Should I Write a Thank You Note After a First Date?

Posted by in dating after divorce, dating in midlife, first date success, online dating after 40 | 1 comment

thank you after a first dateA few years back, I had a first date with a man I’ll call Allen. I drove into Manhattan for a fun day in the city; the Museum of Modern Art to see the Tim Burton exhibit and a wonderful Japanese restaurant for dinner. We laughed easily, and the conversation flowed. He accompanied me across town to where my car was parked. He opened the door like a gentleman and gave me a good night kiss on the cheek. I’d give that date a 9 out of 10 on the successful first date scale. The next morning, I sent him a thank you note. That’s the polite thing to do, right? Not so much. Here’s why.

Thank you note after a first date

Good morning, Allen,

Just wanted to thank you again for a delightful day in sunny NYC.  I was inspired by Tim Burton, invigorated by the hub of the city, and satiated by the delicious food (that I didn’t have to cook, shop for or clean up after!).

Thank you for being a gentleman and seeing me back to my car.  I enjoyed your upbeat personality. You seem like a guy who loves life, sees the bright side, and appreciates what’s real. I haven’t met many people who are as grounded and happy as you seem to be.

Hope you are enjoying another glorious day.



Nice email, right? We had a good time, and I wanted to let him know I was thinking of him.

His response:

Hi Sandy,

I had a long day yesterday, but I did use my breaks to walk outside in the sun.

Thanks for driving into the city on Sunday for a fun day and for the complements in your email.  I do try to stay on the positive side as  much as possible!  I hope you managed to avoid traffic on the way back.

Have a great birthday tomorrow and hopefully it’ll be another day without cookin’ and cleanin’.



We exchanged a few more platonic emails until the conversation came to a dead end halt. Why? Mostly because men are hardwired for the chase. They like to know that they’ve ‘earned’ your love. I was chasing him. I didn’t even give him a chance to email or call me after the date.

Sure, he was flattered by my follow-up thank you email, but he was probably also turned off. As great as the date may have been, the romance was dead in the water.

My date with Allen came to mind this morning when my client, Lily (not her real name) had a similar situation. She had just gone on her first successful date since her divorce. ‘This guy is a 5 out of 5’, she told me. She had such a great time, she sent a follow-up email.

Traditionally, I might write a “snail mail” thank you note for such a lovely evening. However that will take a long time to get to you.

Last night was fun and I’m still smiling. While the food was wonderful, the company was better.

Enjoy the day and I will look forward to talking to you soon.

His response:

 Thanks for your kind and sweet note. I had a wonderful time last night.  You are very compelling.

We need to get together again, so let’s talk in a couple of days and make plans. Any suggestions or ideas you may have are welcome and may even be accepted!

Take care and look forward to seeing you soon.

While his email was positive and included plans for an upcoming date, notice that he was asking her for date suggestions. The danger here is that Lily is prone to resuming her ‘take charge’ role, the one she took in her marriage. She wants a man who can make decisions. She is tired of being the one in charge. If she wants a take charge men, she’ll need to work on leaning back and letting a man step forward.

In coaching, I have helped her become less anxious and more confident with men. She is beginning to relinquish the need to fill in the void with control. She’s starting to let a man step it up and show his desire for her.

So, instead of emailing him back right away, I advised her to wait for his phone call. If she read his email carefully, she’d see that he said, ‘let’s talk in a couple of days and make plans’. And speaking of plans, I told her it would be great to let him make the plans, even though he said he’d be open to her suggestions.

One of the keys to successful dating is learning more effective ways to interact with the opposite sex. If your past relationships failed because of a pattern of behaviors, it makes sense to change those behaviors if you want to find love.

Don’t write a thank you note after a first date. When you call up a man’s inner hero and respect him for taking charge and making decisions, he will grow to cherish you even more. Soon, he won’t be able to get you out of his mind. Be the woman who inspires a man’s love.



1 Comment

  1. I think that’s a lovely idea…but some people may find it a bit full on.

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