You’re at a party, event, or yoga class and someone catches your eye. You’re interested and although there isn’t a ring on their finger, you’re uncertain if that means anything. Do not despair or give up hope. You can find out discreetly if someone is single and available, without asking them directly. Pay attention to the following signals and responses to decide if you want to continue to pursue your love interest.
1. Body Language.
When you approach and talk to your love interest, check out if they’re consistently trying to inconspicuously look at their cell phone or watch. Also, do they need to leave and go home, without explanation or flexibility? Someone who is feeling pressured in terms of who might call/text or a time they need to leave, typically has someone special waiting for them at home.
2. Contact Information.
If you ask your love interest for a phone number and they won’t give it to you, either they’re not available or not interested. Either way, you’ve gained critical information. Further, email addresses and work phone numbers are given when people want to cautiously connect with someone but completely control when the communication occurs—free from others finding out.
3. Place and Time to Meet.
Ask your love interest if they can meet you this weekend for dinner, coffee or a drink. If they won’t agree to meet you in public, or weekends and nights are off the table, they may already be cozy and comfortable with someone else. Yes, people are busy and working hard, but restrictive schedules—where people will only meet you at out of the way places, your home, or during non-date inconvenient times—typically means someone is probably hiding something.
4. Open Ended Questions.
Don’t make the mistake of talking all about yourself when you speak to your love interest. Instead, ask open-ended questions that require thought on their part (e.g., what do you like to do on the weekends, where would you like to travel to). People who hesitate, or get flustered easily with open-ended questions may be lying or trying to narrate something different than their reality. In addition, be aware if they use “we” language as they describe what they’re doing this weekend of their lives in general (e.g., “We went to the movies”). People who are already partnered consistently use “we,” rather than “I” language, and are not always conscious of it.
5. Visit Facebook Page.
Once you learn their name, check out their Facebook page. Do some research. What kinds of pictures and information are they sharing? Don’t just visit their page once, but several times over a period of time.
Dr. Terri Orbuch (aka The Love Doctor®) is a relationship expert for OurTime.com, as well as a professor, therapist, research scientist, and author of five best-selling books, including “Finding Love Again: 6 Simple Steps to a New and Happy Relationship,” available on at amazon.com. Learn more about her at: DrTerriTheLoveDoctor.com.