Learning about your date’s past can be a challenge, especially if they’ve told you they had a rough early life. Yet an essential part of a relationship is coming to know each others past as well as present self. But most people think of their past as ordinary or average. Truthfully, there’s no such thing as an ordinary or average past. What is ordinary to one will be interesting and unique to another. Drawing out that past can be rewarding and fun.
Here are some ideas to help you learn a few things about each other’s past.
Recreate Childhood Photos
Find some pictures of when you or date were tiny kids. Get a camera and reenact the scene from the photo, complete with matching hairdos, clothes (as close as possible), and facial expressions. Talk about the situations of the photos.
Visit an Old Neighborhood
There’s nothing like visiting an old school, church, store, job, or neighborhood to spark stories of growing up. Drive through your dates growing-up areas, and get them to tell you about everything you see.
Read Old Journals
People don’t usually like to share their recent journals, but they love sharing entries from their childhood journals. Not only can this be hilarious, but it can spark all kinds of conversations about the past.
Take turns telling each other your most embarrassing moments, as well as your most happy, sad, startled, dreaded, and blissful memories.
Look Through Photo Albums
Pop out the old photo albums (remember those???) and invite your date to bring his. Take turns looking through the albums and talk about the photos.
Talk with Family About the Past
If you can catch your dates family at dinner, at a reunion, or just hanging around at your date’s home, ask them about the past. “So, was (your date’s name) a terrible two?” “What was she like as a kid?”
Google Each Other
Sit down together at the computer and take turns Googling each other. See what you can find about each other, and talk about what you find.
Go through Facebook Friends Together
Sitting together at the computer, go through Facebook friends, and talk about memories you have with different individuals. Go through photos, and timelines. Sometimes seeing faces from a previous life situation will spark stories, laughs, and meaningful discussion about the past.
Earliest Memories Competition
Have a fun little memory competition. Take turns telling each other your earliest memories. The one who can remember a situation from the youngest age gets to have the other one take them out to dinner.
Play, “Have You Ever”
This is similar to the game “I have never,” but in “Have you ever,” one person says, “Have you ever…” then shares something they have done that they think the other has probably never done. If the other person can honestly say, “I have, too,” then the first person has to go again. That person continues to say things they’ve done until they can find something that the other hasn’t done. Once the honest response is, “I’ve never done that!” it’s that person’s turn.
If you want, count points for every time you can honestly say, “I have, too,” and have a prize for the winner.