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Friday, February 22, 2013

When Casual Group Dating Isn't Done in Your Town

Dear Bro Jo,

I have two problems that have the same base problem: no one in my area really dates.

I live in a small town surrounded with other small towns. There are 200 (give or take) students in my high school, so there aren't many people in the first place. But to add to that, it seems that most of he people willing to date are always in relationships, and therefore don't date around.

Plus, most of the guys aren't really that great.

They swear and talk inappropriately, even the members (most of the people in my town, and the entire area, are members)!

I recently turned 16, and things started getting complicated.   At a teen dance (it's kind of like a stake dance, but in an area of small towns, we need more than one stake to make a dance haha) I danced with a boy that I sort of knew from a school activity.

He's from a town a little ways from mine, but since that dance I've been on a few dates with him, and I know he wants to take me out on more. It's not like I have haven't gone on other dates, but...

So I guess my question is, how can I go on other dates in between when no one else ever asks me on dates?

People hardly ever just go on fun, Casual Group Dates!

I don't want to be the one to ask someone on a date, and even if I was ok with it, I would be too worried that I'd find out the hard way they are dating someone.

Now that I've poured out my heart and soul, I hope that you can give me some advice. 



Dear Sincerely,

Sister Jo and I have talked about this a lot lately as our older boys graduate and move on and our oldest daughter is all too rapidly approaching dating age.

We understand the need to be flexible, but we also are firm believers in the "Dating Rules" that we've established. Here's our opinion so far, as well as some things that may help you:

Q.   If a girl is supposed to follow the "no dating the same person twice in a row" rule, what happens if only one boy is asking her out?

A. If enough time has passed, say 3 months or so, we may consider that enough for the dates to not be "in a row"; however, we think a better choice is for her to tell the guy that really wants to date her "look, I'd love to go, but I can't go out with you until someone else takes me out . . . and no one else has asked; so if you want to date me you better fix that".

That may sound . . . weird or awkward, but if everyone is Casual Group Dating (as you should be - though I get the feeling you aren't) then it's no problem.  If other kids in your area aren't on board with the concept, then it's up to you to be the leader; teach them!  Be an influence of change.

Consider this: since all of his dates with you are supposed to be double or more dates, then he and his buddies can simply rotate who's taking whom. Everyone plays by the rules, everyone gets to know more than one person better, and much more dating happens.

Q. What if a guy asks her out, but because of lack of friends, or lack of friends who are willing to date, he can't find a Dating Buddy?

A. Then you don't go. People seem to solve problems when properly motivated; when no Dating Buddy equals no date, and a guy really wants to go out, he'll find someone. Trust me.

(By the way, our rule is that the Dating Buddy needs to be in the car when she gets picked up, and in the car when she gets dropped off. Very important.)

And for your part, when he asks you out you should be asking who else is coming. If he has a buddy, but that buddy doesn't have a date, you should be ready to suggest one of your friends.

See how it all works?

And if you end up not getting as many dates in High School as you want . . . or deserve . . . that's okay, too. You're a wonderful daughter of God!  And you have worth and talent and value, whether the boys in your small area are smart enough (or brave enough) to realize that or not.

- Bro Jo

1 comment:

Laura said...

Yep. Great advice.
I'm about to graduate college now, and I never once was asked out on a date in high school. I wasn't actually technically asked on a date until my second year of college! And it's not like I wasn't trying, either.
So just hang in there. Life after high school is much fuller, especially if you move to a greatly populated area!