” my grandmother wondered every time the topic came up. They both obstinately held to the position that courtship was a foolish idea. As I grew older, I started to speak at homeschool conferences and events.
I talked with homeschool parents, students and alumni all over the country and started to see some challenges with making courtship work.
Some of the specific challenges I identified were: So I founded Practical
So if she went out for soda with Bob on Tuesday, she had to go to a movie with Bill on Thursday before she could go to the school dance with Bob on Saturday. The lack of exclusivity kept the interactions fun and casual. How could a boy have a claim to her time, heart or body if she was going out with someone else later that week?
She went on to explain that by the time she graduated from high school, she had gone out on dates with over 20 different guys.
It often had symbols like the girl wearing the guy’s letter jacket.
This telegraphed to everyone at school that she was “off the market” and that she had a “steady beau”.
It seems that my great grandparents’ rule forbidding my grandmother from going out with the same guy twice in a row was a common rule in those days.
The Greatest Generation was encouraged to date and discouraged from going steady while in middle school.
This is different from my generation, which is encouraged to “wait until you are ready to get married” before pursuing a romantic relationship.
This advice, when combined with the fact that “the purpose of courtship is marriage”, makes asking a girl out for dinner the emotional equivalent of asking for her hand in marriage.
I am not convinced that anyone is ever truly ready to get married.
Readiness can become a carrot on a stick, an ideal that can never be achieved.
She went on to explain that there used to be a linguistic differentiation between “dating” and “going steady”.