Tuesday, February 13, 2007

On Dating and Love

If love is a battlefield, dating has many casualties.  I have a 17 year old son, Bubba.  And I read a young woman's private journal and comment there.  Things from both have been spinning around in my head for some time.  For what it is worth, with Valentine's Day at hand, I'm going to share my thoughts on some of what I see and hear.

It seems that the teens in our local school district have adopted a policy that constricts their ability to get to know a variety of people and really explore what they like, enjoy and admire in another.  If you ask someone out, you are "going together".  One date and you are committed.  Only way to go out with or do something with someone else is to "break up".   I suppose this metamorphosis occurred to try to be safe in a world of rampant sexual diseases.  I don't know.  But it is sad. 

These young people or setting themselves up to hurt and betray one another.  They are missing out on one of the most thrilling parts of youth and being single.  To them, wherever they live, I recommend you abandon this nonsense and try another approach. 

Go to the movies with Diane on Monday.  Take Sarah to the game on Friday.  Spend Sunday afternoon at the park with Chuck.  Boys, ask any girl who interests you in any way on a date.  Girls, accept all invitations from acceptable young men.  If one of these people really capture your interest and touch your heart after a dozen or so dates over time, then if you want to try some exclusivity, fine.  It's good practice for later relationships. 

And the next part arises out of what I see and hear these young girls doing.  They repeatedly sell themselves short!  I realize there is a lot of competition out there, but if you win a guy by lowering your standards or cheapening your own value....what have you gained?  And if this is how you got the guy, how long do you really think you'll hold his interest?

Twenty-three years ago, I was in many ways where you are.  I knowthat now it seems the things you want will never come.  And I know it sounds crazy, but the best way to go is just to get on with living the life you have.  Find things you enjoy.  Do them.  Be yourself.  Pray for God to prepare the man He would put in your life.  Don't go looking for him, but don't withdraw into a cocoon either.  When we actively look for a mate, we actually start to try to make everyone we spend a little time with into the love of our life.

Many of the old ways are still the best ways!!! Man's character has not changed, only the times.  A man needs to feel he has worked for you, won you. And that you were worth winning. 

Don't call him in the beginning unless you have to, to be courteous and tell him plans have changed or something.

Don't invite him out unless it is something he cannot invite you to.....like a company party, etc.

Don't drive all over meeting him places or picking him up.  Make him come and get you and don't go out to a honking horn!  He should always come to your door.

Never, ever pay a guy or boyfriends bills, pay for the date or buy him things for no occasion.  It attracts freeloaders, gigolos and bums.

After you have been in a long-term steady relationship you can begin to do some of these things.....but don't be extravagant.  Keep it simple.  Extravagance can come after you're engaged. 

We all crave connection and relationships of all various sorts.  That's how God designed us.  He gives us all family, and that fills the void to one point or another depending on the family we are given.  And as we go along we find friends and acquaintances and that fills another little piece.  But at some point in time, we crave, we need more!  That is so that we will search for God and come to Him for THAT relationship.  If we do, and we put our relationship with Him FIRST it will do much to heal, direct, and grow the relationships we already have with family and friends.  It will bring new relationships with other Christians in our lives.  All of this works to make us more whole and complete so that we can have that SPECIAL relationship with someone of the opposite sex.  Now quite often we get all of this out of cinq, out of order.  And it causes us pains, heartaches and disappointments.  But the wonderful thing is it is never too late to loosen the harness and put the horse in front of the cart, so to speak.

17 comments:

  1. very well said...
    love ya,
    carlene

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  2. Excellent advice!!  It is very hard for young people these days.  Seems like they don't get any of this good solid advice from their parents or if they do they ignore it.
    Lisa

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  3. Good advice Barbara, Helen

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  4. Amen....I am copying & pasting to send in an email to both of my children...I love this entry...
    Michele
    http://journals.aol.com/glensfork4/these-are-my-thoughts/

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  5. Great post.  Hope everybody copies and pastes it and sends it to their children, and grandchildren. I know I will.
    Hugs, hon,
    Barb- http://journals.aol.com/barbpinion/HEYLETSTALK

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  6. I love this post and may send some young friends to read it.. Your approach is the "no nonsense" approach. It can even cut down on the sexual activity of teens. If they dont see so much of each other , maybe it will help them to avoid some feelings that lead to too much intimacy too soon..

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  7. You said this so well. I hope it helps many teens. If it only helps one that is an accomlishment. Thank you for telling it like it should be. Happy Valentine's Day to you, Paula

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  8. Good advice, Barbara, and it worked in my days too... though the styles of dress are different, there is nothing much else different, except that todays teens have cell phones, iPods, and a past history of playing video games and watching MTV or other music videos. Which means they've had influences we never had growing up, which could be a negative. But the basics, the need for a friend, a relationship, a lover, a lifetime partner, and God will never change.  A relevant post for teens. bea

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  9. I always told my oldest son to have lots of friends that are girls.... and to date different people.... He had lots of friends that were girls and had a total of three girlfiends that I know of... He has been with his third girlfriend over a year and they are now living together.... So I'm still keeping an eye on him to see how it all turns out....
    Happy Valentines Day!!
    Linda :)

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  10. thank you for shairing this entry ;)
    em

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  11. What a precious picture you posted with this story.

    Marlene  - A Poet's Point Of View

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  12. Good advice! In fact, I think it applies to our youth, and all ages~~ I have friends who are in their mid 30's who haven't displayed these simple ideas.
    Rebecca

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  13. Good entry.  I hope you were able to reach some young ones with these good words of advice.
    Lori
    http://journals.aol.com/helmswondermom/DustyPages

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  14. I absolutely agree with you.  Chivalry is extinct.  The basic concept of dating is misconstrued -- not just by teenagers, either.  I give you many kudos.  Well said!


    Dolores

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  15. The trouble is, we don't know what we are supposed to be anymore. I have been accused of being sexist, just for holding a door open for a girl on more than one occasion. I'm afraid you must now labour under the post-feminist backlash!
    http://journals.aol.co.uk/acoward15/andy-the-bastard/

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    ReplyDelete
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So glad you stopped by! Come 'round any time. ~ Barbara

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