Middle-Aged Dating Horror Story I’m at ‘that age’, and I was recently on a first date when… Boom! I got struck by one of my very first hot flashes. I hadn’t been getting them regularly or even that strongly before that moment, so I was really caught off guard. At first, I thought, am I nervous? Having a panic attack? I escaped to the restroom to get myself in order. Why did this have to happen while I was trying to make a good impression?? I’d never even considered that dating and hot flashes could be an issue. Talk about bad timing… Please ladies, stay cool and learn from my mistakes. Some Advice for Dealing with Dating and Hot Flashes DO NOT wear a sweater. I don’t care if it’s 20 below zero outside. Wear layers if it’s colder out Blouses or a dress are better for a date, anyway, and while we’re at it – no turtlenecks, either. Just make sure your clothes won’t readily give you away if you overheat. Silk is a no-no if this is a possibility. Test-drive this at home by putting a drop or two of water in a discreet area of your clothes (side seam works well) to see how water will show. Alcohol exacerbates the problem – yet many of us rely on liquid courage to get through a first date. I know I do. Get around this by figuring out ahead of time which alcohols are more likely to heat you up. I never drink red wine and limit myself to two glasses of anything on a first date. Order ICE water. Even if you don’t feel like it, you’ll be glad those ice cubes are nearby. When you feel the heat coming on, take a sip of the ice water and subtly take a piece of ice in your mouth. Cool your mouth on it while you politely listen to your date talk about his job . . .:) If you can, get there earlier to scope out the room for the best place to sit. Avoid the seat by the fireplace (even though the lighting would really flatter your skin). Sit under a vent or in the best breezeway. Ask the staff where’s the coolest spot is. Whatever you do, if you feel the hot flash coming on, DO NOT fan yourself. This is like wearing a flashing neon sign that screams “I’m having a hot flash!!” This is not the kind of attention you want. (Fanning myself with my hands and arms never really works for me, anyway.) Instead, dip your napkin in ice cold water and hold it back on your neck or on your wrists or inner elbows – any major pulse point will help. To be less obvious, prep this before your date arrives (get an extra napkin or two to store in your purse) or while he is in the restroom. And, if it’s bad episode, excuse yourself and head to the restroom. Cool yourself off with some paper towels and cold water in the bathroom and dry off. When you’re composed, make your return in elegant style. Use the Hot Flash to Your Advantage Lastly, if the date is going well, consider coming clean about what’s happening. Dating and hot flashes may not always mix well, but this can work to your advantage if you’re willing to see it that way (and not try to hide your age). Parlay this potentially awkward moment into an opportunity to show off your great sense of humor. Better yet, tell him he is making you flush! Trust me, any man will be flattered. Good Luck! Dating at middle age has its challenges, but it can be the most fun when we just own who we are and have fun. Do you have a question as it pertains to sex or dating during or post breakup or divorce? Ask us HERE.