If you have ever read advice on how to have a first date, you have probably noticed that almost every piece of advice involves engaging in an activity where you have plenty of opportunity to talk. This is why activities like shows and movies tend to make poor first dates and activities like picnics and visiting the zoo tend to make good first dates.

Of course, even if you have plenty of opportunity for conversation on your first date, you still need to find something to talk about. Assuming you met online, you should have plenty of topics to talk about just to learn more about each other. But just because you can discuss certain topics, that doesn't mean you should. There are certain topics that are best to avoid during your first date, at least if you want to enjoy a second date. The following five topics are ones that you should avoid during a first date.

1. Your Past Relationships

Just about everyone who has ever gone on a first date has felt incredibly nervous. Part of what makes most people nervous is the concern that even one little mistake may cost them the chance at a second date. Discussing a past relationship just makes that situation worse.

When you discuss a past relationship, your date is likely to feel like they are being compared to past boyfriends or girlfriends. This makes the situation not just uncomfortable, but also makes it feel like a competition. In turn, your date is likely to try too hard to impress you, in a way that may seem obsessive, or may become paranoid about every little thing. Neither will be beneficial to your date.

If you are absolutely forced to discuss a past relationship for any reason, like if an ex happens to show up where you are and tries to talk to you, make any such discussion brief and try to cleanly transition away from the discussion as quickly as possible.

2. Where Your Relationship is Going

First off, assuming you met online, you already know whether you have compatible relationship goals based on your profiles. You certainly didn't agree to go on a date with someone who just wanted a sex partner if you wanted a long term relationship. Second, and more importantly, it is way too early to discuss relationship goals, since you don't even know if you are compatible enough for a second date yet. Any such discussion will be incredibly premature and uncomfortable.

If there are relationship goals or related topics that absolutely need to be discussed early in your relationship, like the fact that one of you has children, have that discussion online before the first date ever happens.

3. Politics and Religion

Once again, if you or your date are only willing to date people of a specific religious or political bent, that information is visible in your profile and should already have worked itself out before your first date. Other than that, politics and religion are generally topics that pull out the most extreme views in people, views that do not otherwise represent the person as a whole. By engaging in a discussion of these topics early in the relationship, you are likely to get a misleading perception of them.

4. Sex

There are a couple reasons to avoid the topic of sex on the first date. The simplest reason is that almost any discussion of sex will eventually end up with you discussing past sexual encounters, which means you will be discussing past relationships. Additionally, since your date is probably in a public location, you are likely to make others in the area rather uncomfortable if you are overhead. Finally, by starting the discussion, you are basically suggesting that you would like to have sex. While that is generally understood to be likely for at least one of you, actually talking about it puts your date in an uncomfortable position if they aren't interested yet.

It is important to note, talking about not having sex is still talking about sex So, even if you are abstinent and plan to remain so until marriage, it is best to make that clear in your profile, rather than have the discussion on your first date.

5. Being Nervous

You are nervous. That is pretty much a given. Your date is nervous, too. Any discussion about the topic will pretty much start and end there. It is a poor conversation starter that is likely to do nothing more than end up with a long silence afterwards. You are literally better off talking about the weather than your nerves, because at least you can segue that into some interesting conversation topics if you are a little creative.