There’s just something about first kisses. When, where, how and why they happen can tell you a lot about a person. They can also tell you a lot about what the relationship might be like. Usually imbued with all sorts of anxieties, they can send tingles up your spine, set your loins on fire, or totally turn you off.

I remember my first kiss …

I was fifteen – his name was Bruce. We both worked at the local grocery store, but went to different high schools. I think I only wanted to “go out” (we were so innocent in the early ‘90s) with him because I didn’t want to be “sweet sixteen and never been kissed.”

I think that was the first time I realized that I could wield power over a man. I remember breaking up with him soon after that – a scene that rolled out on my parents’ front lawn. I couldn’t give him a good reason; I just didn’t want to “date” anymore.

But back to the kisses …

The “when” of a first kiss tells you a lot about how much he’s into you. Is it on the first date? If it’s a hug and a kiss on the cheek, he might be a gentleman. If it’s a gentle, slightly prolonged goodnight kiss on the mouth, he likes you but is being a gentleman. If it’s a total mash-mouth with tongue, he just wants to f*ck you, so proceed with caution.

Second date? This is the best time for a first “real kiss.” If he hasn’t done it by the second date it means he’s not going to do it, so you should just forget it. But if you’re really into him and you’re getting all of the green light signals from him, you should take the lead. Men love it when women take charge of physical contact.

The “where” is telling as well. I’ve had some interesting first kiss locations:

  • There was the one on the floor of my college dorm room, can’t remember his name
  • With Harry it was on a swing in a romantic moonlit park
  • My first kiss with Russell was in my living room
  • Soldier Boy and I kissed in a parking lot after a fun date
  • With Rich the Sailor it was in the evening on a pier overlooking the city lights
  • The Plumber and I did it while slow dancing in a restaurant
  • With Justin, my post-college boyfriend, it was on the bed in his apartment
  • Crazy Jeff first kissed me on Halloween night under a street lamp in a park

Okay so not all of these are romantic locations, but each happened in a certain place for a reason, which brings me to the “how” and “why.”

“How” and “why” a first kiss happens are the most important parts of the story. How and why are intertwined – the motive and execution are linked. Looking back I realize that several of my first kisses came after months of harmless flirting and pent-up sexual tension. That’s how the first kisses were with Russell, Rich the Sailor and Justin.

Then there were the kisses that I motivated: Soldier Boy and the Plumber. For me, it’s about the power that physical contact possesses, and the control that I can wield over a relationship by bestowing or withholding that physical contact. It’s totally psycho – I get it. But knowing that I can control a man is very powerful. Is it right? No. Is it healthy? Of course not. I’ve been in therapy for a while now, but this is something I still haven’t been able to get past.

I haven’t had a first kiss in over a year and a half – since my first date with the Plumber. I’m jonesing for another first kiss. The anticipation is like a drug … will he, won’t he, should I?  The spine tingle, the taste of his lips, the moment your heart skips a beat … oh dear. I really need a date!