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His First Date Behavior, Decoded

So he brought up his ex? What does that mean?

While it's thoroughly impossible to definitively say that each one of these guy actions means one specific thing, there are general indicators of what a guy is trying to tell you via his first date behaviors. Here's what those signs usually mean. 

1. What he did: Hugged you goodnight instead of kissed you.

What he means: This one is tough because it so often means that he didn't feel a strong romantic connection (and let's face it, you probably didn't either), but occasionally it just means he's too shy to kiss you. Either way, the romantic vibe isn't strong enough to push past everything to get you to Kiss City, but it's a first date. If there's a second one, you'll get that info then. 

2. What he did: Put his hands *somewhere* on your body. 

What he means: If those hands landed on your back, he's being super-sweet and kind of protective. I always love when this happens on a first date because it's not a grope-y touch but it's also some form of physical contact that signals, "Yep, I am digging you." If he put his hands on your thigh, however, he is down to bang ASAP and if you are too, book the eff out. 

3. What he did: Orders for you. 

What he means: If he knew what you wanted, this is usually just a cute way of him trying to take care of you. Ordering for you both instead of doing the "who should order first" dance is actually a pretty baller move for either gender, so that might be the case. If he didn't know what you wanted, there's, like, a 5 percent chance he really wanted you to try this one amazing thing on the menu he thinks you'll love, and a 95 percent chance he's a controlling turd who doesn't care what you want. Time will tell. 

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4. What he did: Picked up the check. 

What he means: This is so often debated, but based on the guy friends I've spoken to about this, it just means he's into you and wanted to pick up the check, because we're socialized that that is what happens on a good date. You can let your mind nap now. 

5. What he did: Paid for himself only. 

What he means: This is tricky because it can mean that he wasn't that into the date. But it can also mean he is into you ... just not into splitting the check on first dates or worrying too much about gender stereotypes. Simple as that. Please stop overanalyzing this because it will only drive you batshit. 

6. What he did: Picked you up instead of meeting you there. 

What he means: Honestly, this is an adorable AF move because it's old-fashioned and romantic … unless he's just into the environment and wanted to reduce your collective carbon footprint, which is also cute. Any way you slice it, this is cuuuuute. 

7. What he did: Met you at the bar instead of picking you up. 

What he means: Even though I said it was super-sweet of the guy to pick you up, it's also totally possible that he felt like you'd feel weird if he picked you up (or you'd feel like you were a 1950s ad for Coca-Cola). Or maybe he doesn't have a car so he has no way to pick you up. Either way, it's definitely not a sign he thinks your boobs are awful or something weird like that. 

8. What he did: Looked at his phone a few times. 

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What he means: While this could just mean he has a lot going on (or is just a modern person in the world), it still isn't a great sign. I'm on my phone all the time but when I'm on a good date, I never look at my phone because it feels rude as hell (and it pretty much is). 

9. What he did: Didn't look at his phone at all. 

What he means: While there's a tiny chance he has no friend or his phone fell into the ocean, it's way more likely that he's having such an awesome time with you that he temporarily forgot he even had a phone. Great sign. 

10. What he did: Brought up his ex. 

What he means: It depends how he brought her up. If it was the old, "My ex is crazy, god she was the worst," he might not be over her and might have some rage issues in general. But if it was like, "Yeah, my last relationship ended because I wasn't ready for a real relationship and now I am," that's a great sign that he's open to sharing his romantic past because it directly relates to your romantic future, which is good knowledge to have. 

11. What he did: Mostly talked about his job. 

What he means: He's clearly into his job and probably spends most of his time there, so that makes sense, but it could also mean he doesn't have much of a social or personal life and your relationship might come second to his career as a … as a … crap, you don't remember what it was but it sounded cool job. 

12. What he did: Asked you a ton of questions and didn't reveal much about himself. 

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What he means: He could be hiding something sinister, but my money's on the fact that he's super-interested in getting to know about you and your life. And if you're still worried about finding out more about him, duh, that's what second dates are for.

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This article originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.com. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.