'I tried emotional foreplay on a third date. I have so much regret.'

The one thing they don’t tell you growing up is that dating isn’t all roses and fine dining. We’re brought up on fairytales that make us think Prince Charming will sweep us off our feet and we'll find ourselves married with babies in a house with a white picket fence all before the ripe ol' age of 30. 


What actually happens is we will go on many bad dates, ones that will make us cringe when we look back on them. Which is exactly what I’m doing now as I write this. Yes, RIP me and my most recent dating experience.

You see, at the age of 39, you would think I would know better. But like most millennials, I’m still figuring it out. Why? Because the dating rules keep changing.

In this case, however, I blame Selena Gomez.

But first, watch the horoscopes go on a date. Post continues after video.

Video via Mamamia.

Late last year I sat down to watch her documentary My Mind and Me. During the (admittedly brilliant) doco she played a card game with her friends that came in a bright red box and was titled We're Not Really Strangers (WNRS).


It asks all these deeply personal questions so that players can get to know each other on an intimate level. 

Naturally, I immediately googled it. For just $40 (excluding postage, sigh) you can buy the game that will guarantee you know all there is to know about someone in under an hour. In fact, it's marketed as “Emotional foreplay”. 

Now as someone who can’t stand small talk but struggles to get to the core of a person making it sound like an interrogation, I loved the idea. 

I bought it, then six months later, decided to play it with a guy I'd been on three dates with.

No, Jana. Bad idea.

You see, I hadn’t yet got the memo about the latest dating trend that I was about to inadvertently follow. 

It’s called PMI (which stands for Premature Intimacy) and experts are warning it's not the best idea. 

PMI involves sharing way too much personal info about yourself, way too fast. According to the dating website Plenty of Fish, which surveyed 6,000 daters in the US, PMI has become one of the most common dating woes.

It can overwhelm your date. It can ruin the mystery between two people who have just started dating. 

If only I'd known. 

My date had a massive week travelling for work, so we decided to just Netflix and Chill at my place. Yes, that is code for we were going to do the 'deed' but also hang out as well. He came over with a bottle of wine and a pizza, and I suggested we play the card game. First mistake.


The game comes in three levels of intimacy. We decided to pour ourselves a glass of wine and start at the ‘beginners’ end. This involved asking each other questions like 'What was your first impression of me?' which was cute. He told me I appeared confident, and I told him I thought he was really attractive.

We answered these questions for around 30 minutes. More wine was consumed, and we decided to move up to the next intimacy level. 

This included the question 'When was the last time you were in love?'.

I told my date all about my most recent heartbreak and to my horror, started to cry. 

He then responded with 'I don’t think I’ve ever been in love' which I found a bit concerning for a 40-something year old man. 

And I told him so. I was far too judgemental, and he was far too offended.

Listen to The Undone where the hosts break down the three types of people you'll definitely end up dating sooner than later (you might even be one yourself). Post continues below.

By the time we got to the third level of intimate questions, we were feeling a little emotionally spent. 


Now we were covering issues from our childhood.

One card instructed us to write a note to our younger self and read it out. Another asked what we thought each other's weaknesses were. Then there was 'prescribe the other person a self-help book based on what you know about them'. 

Guys, it got grim.

The more wine we consumed, the more honest we got. And by the time we finished the game, it’s safe to say there was certainly no mystery left. Not only did he now know I thought his goofy faces in his Instagram pics were slightly immature, but I also found out he thinks my job is kinda lame. We woke up the next morning not only to a red wine hangover but also to a vulnerability hangover.

Some questions are better left unanswered. I may have discovered later down the track that he pulls those faces because he doesn’t like his smile, and he may have slowly discovered that my job really comes with some awesome perks. But we were answering all these really emotional questions with absolutely no context around them.

The final question in the game was 'What will you take away from this conversation?' and upon hindsight, I would say… don’t ever play this game with someone you’re casually dating ever again.

Our mutual 'it's not you, it's me' texts were exchanged within a week.

Feature Image: Instagram @jana_hocking.

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