First Dates recap: Drama over the splitting of a bill sees Barbara and Chris part ways

 Why are so many men lying to their girlfriends about their wives? Just one question raised by this week’s First Dates Ireland
First Dates recap: Drama over the splitting of a bill sees Barbara and Chris part ways

Barbara was a bit thrown when Chris asked to split the bill on First Dates Ireland

Barbara and Chris 

Barbara says a near-fatal motorbike accident when she was 18 made her live life to the fullest. Now 57 (but looking at most 45 as barman Ethan accurately points out), she said he wants to move on from being a serial dater. Enter Chris, who wants to click with someone.

He says he has experienced heartache, saying “it’s a real kick in the nuts” and Barbara reveals she split from her husband when she discovered his secret fiancée, who he told he was a widower. Despite the incredible betrayal, she said she emerged more confident in herself.

They swapped life stories and in the pre-show interview they both answered exactly the same when asked about sex: “yes please.” However, one moment towards the end of their date caused Barbara some concern - Chris immediately asked to split the bill. “I was a little bit surprised. Straight away he just said will we half it. It sort of threw me.” 

She said she didn’t feel a romantic connection and Chris agreed. When asked if they’d have done anything differently, Chris says he wouldn’t have suggested they split the bill.

Miranda and Sam 

Miranda hopes Sam will end her streak of 'situationships'
Miranda hopes Sam will end her streak of 'situationships'

Dater Miranda told the camera pre-date about a past relationship where she discovered the guy she was dating lied about his name and actually had a wife and family. Was… was she with Barbara’s ex? Another ghosted her for weeks before eventually telling her he had been in a coma. Surely, her dinner with Sam is guaranteed to turn out better than those disasters.

At the bar, Miranda is all chat and Sam can’t get a word in, despite his best efforts. Things are a bit more back and forth at the table where they share jokes about virtual dating (‘You’ve muted yourself there…”) but there is definitely an imbalance in who gets to talk and Sam’s face can’t always disguise the disappointment and annoyance when he is interrupted again.

However, her infectious laugh won him over and while they both want to meet again, they agree they’d be better as friends.

Ed and Jason 

A second date beckons for Ed and Jason
A second date beckons for Ed and Jason

Wedding coordinator Ed from Cavan says he can’t help being a romantic considering the hundreds of unions he has witnessed. Will his date with Jason lead to wedding bells?

Ed says he has had flings but now is looking to settle down long-term. Jason, meanwhile, is hoping to find a love like that between his parents, who met at 16. He arrived wearing amazing rainbow-soled shoes, “just in case anyone couldn’t tell”.

He tells Ed about how he struggled with sexuality and was about to take his own life because of that when a passing woman stopped him. “I downloaded Grindr the next day!” Since he came out, he says he hasn’t experienced a negative reaction from anyone.

They’re both looking for someone to make them laugh, and they seem to have found that in each other. From chats about watching plastic surgery on TikTok, or “big titty TikTok” as Jason wonderfully describes it to talking about how they both want kids in the future, it was no surprise these two agreed to a second date.

Rachel and Ben 

Despite Ben's 'Mr Bean start to the day', his date with Rachel goes well
Despite Ben's 'Mr Bean start to the day', his date with Rachel goes well

Podcaster Rachel says she approaches dates like she would a job interview, but adds she sees job interviews as “just a chat”, so the pressure’s off. If Ben were at a job interview, the phrase “my life peaked when I was six years old” might never have been uttered and he wouldn’t have revealed the ‘Mr Bean’ start to his day: shaving his beard too short and putting his trousers he is wearing in the dryer so they shrank.

They had a good chat, exactly what Rachel wanted, but it did at times feel a bit too formal for a date. However, straight-talking Rachel said she’d be up for a second date with him and Ben agreed.

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