Do you remember your mother’s advice so many years ago: Don’t get into a car with a stranger, don’t let a stranger into your home, etc? Your mom was right then, and she is still right! If you are a single woman, use caution in the dating world–it’s a jungle. Don’t go home with a man you just met at a party or other social event. Don’t  give your home address to a stranger, especially one you meet online. Always have your first date with a stranger in public, in front of witnesses. Be particularly careful to avoid STDs by taking proper precautions.

Amanda Johnson of Parents Without Partners has this advice:

1. If my friends are not watching my drink while I’m on the dance floor and/or I don’t finish it before I leave the table, I don’t touch it when I get back.  If someone buys me a drink and I don’t see it poured from the bar tender to my hands, I either don’t accept it at all, or say thank you and put it to the side without ever drinking it .

2. If you do connect up with someone at the party, it isn’t advisable to leave with them that night

3. Let someone in the group know if you are leaving, so someone can walk you to your car or know that you have left the group safely.

4. A  first-time date with a strangert should be during the day, and in an area that is comfortable to you (familiar territory).  Provide your girlfriend with the name, email address and phone number, if you have them, of the man you are meeting.  Tell your friends the time you are meeting and set-up a call about 1/2 hour into the meet-up to check-in.  I  usually excuse myself to the restroom to do this.

Sounds paranoid? “Better safe than sorry!”