[ad]A first date is quite an accomplishment, because it means you’ve gotten past the flirting stage to actually set up a time and place to get to know each other. You’ve already been through a vetting process to decide if a date is even worth your time, whether it’s been four email volleys on a dating site or a five minute conversation in a bar.
Although we’re all complex individuals, there is only so much of ourselves that we can share at an initial meeting. In fact, there’s only so much we’d want to share, as first impressions count. Simply put, we want to put our best face forward.
Thus, it is no surprise that the sign on our Ascendant takes the stage on a first date. The Rising Sign is the zodiac sign that was on the Eastern horizon at the moment of birth. The Ascendant is the “face” we present to the world, as well as our physical appearance. When you meet someone, the qualities of their Rising Sign are often more prominent than their Sun sign. (This explains why we are often not initially perceived as our true selves.)
On a first date, you want to display the best possible “view” of your Rising Sign, but this is sometimes difficult. If your Ascendant is “afflicted” — meaning that another planet makes a stressful angle to the precise degree of your Ascendant — then you have an internal conflict preventing you from feeling comfortable with your public self. If, on the other hand, you have a planet making a supportive angle to your Ascendant, then you’ve got a nice boost from other parts of your chart.
“What do you like to do in your spare time?” (The Chart Ruler)
Although the Sun and Moon are key to understanding yourself, another important planet is your chart ruler. This is the planet that rules your Ascendant, or Rising Sign. Below is a guide to determine your chart ruler. (Be sure to figure out your Rising Sign first!)
- Aries = Mars
- Taurus = Venus
- Gemini = Mercury
- Cancer = Moon
- Leo = Sun
- Virgo = Mercury
- Libra = Venus
- Scorpio = Mars (or Pluto)
- Sagittarius = Jupiter
- Capricorn = Saturn
- Aquarius = Saturn (or Uranus)
- Pisces = Jupiter (or Neptune)
[Note: I typically use the personal and social planets (Sun through Saturn) as sign rulers, but many other astrologers use the outer planets for Scorpio, Aquarius and Pisces. It pays to experiment.]
The house that your chart ruler is in suggests what you need to do to feel fulfilled. If you have Libra Rising and your Venus is in Capricorn in your Fourth House, then home and family are going to be really important to you. Even if you’re not a Cancer, you may end up talking about your parents on a first date! (And you’ll do it in a very charming, gracious way, of course.)
If you don’t “live out” the themes associated with the house in which your chart ruler is placed, you’re not likely to feel content. And when you’re scoping out your next boyfriend or girlfriend, you’re obviously looking for someone who will match you on that level — whether you’re looking for a spouse or a summer fling. Thus, it makes sense that you’ll talk about this area of your life, because if you get blank stares from your date, you know a relationship might not go anywhere.
Comment below: Which “self” do you put forth on a first date, and how does it differ from your Sun sign?