Looking to go steady

Added: Trevin Innocent - Date: 24.02.2022 21:59 - Views: 39650 - Clicks: 3569

It provides concrete opinion on dating age which may run counter to the current attitude of many young people of today. The readers are advised to look into and reflect upon the arguments of the author based on his rich actual experience on the subject matter. Why is a priest writing about a topic like this? What does he know about this stuff? The answer to the latter is simply that I too was a regular dude once, the campus scene in the early seventies not being much different from what it is now as far as this topic was concerned, except that premarital sex was much less then.

After counseling young people for the past thirty years- especially as a priest in the past twenty- I have arrived at the conclusion that premarital sex among teenagers can largely be blamed on going steady. Ultimately, of course, the deterioration of morals in society should be blamed. However, I am more convinced each day that the occasion for possible failures in this regard can be minimized by postponing going.

This is the main reason that urged me to write this article. Why Go Steady? Before anything else, it is important to define our terms, given the different stages of the man-woman relationship prior to marriage. In brief, we can lay down the following:. This stage can be subdivided into:. It starts when the possibility of a future marriage is first entertained, and therefore marks a certain degree of exclusivity.

Most young people go steady for the wrong reason:. If I fall in love. The fact is, love can be a cold- blooded affair, if it is true love- that is, an act of the will towards a person who has been perceived by the intellect as somebody worthy of love. One loves deliberately. Unfortunately, love has been confused with feelings or affections.

These latter are reactions to sensible good that can indeed precede, accompany or follow love, but they are not love. Only the intellect can really judge the overall aptness of a person for conjugal love. The failure to distinguish between feelings of love and love itself is at the bottom of many failed marriages. Because real conjugal love is inseparable from marriage. Going steady is like getting engaged. The couple are getting to know each other more, so as to be able to finalize the decision for conjugal love and marriage. It is not rational to get into this relationship in college or high school, because it is too early for that.

You casually ask him when he plans to make the actual purchase and he- just as casually- tells you he has no plans yet, at least not in the next couple of years. Something like that happens with going steady in college. The Problem of Serial Monogamy. Another consequence of teen-age steady relationships is the rise of a mentality which has been called serial monogamy- i. Granted that within those two years the couple may really feel in love with each other and thus practice fidelity with each other hence are monogamous in a sensenevertheless, since they are too young to really commit themselves to each other for life, the relationship is not indissoluble.

Thus, in the span of the decade or so prior to marriage, the unwary young man or woman might go through several monogamous but dissoluble relationships.

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Such serial monogamy prior to marriage is the breeding ground for a divorce mentality afterwards, since conjugal love has been equated with monogamy alone, forgetting the aspect of indissolubility. Real marital love is for keeps.

How long should courtship be? This is quite logical, since most girls- at least in the urban setting- go to college, and would therefore want to experience a bit of their professional career before they settle down to the more serious business of raising up a family. Hence, the young lady is not answering my question, but is rather thinking of how long it will take her to be old enough to get married.

Rephrasing the question normally unravels the fuzzy logic. This is the crux of the matter. Why long courtships are unhealthy. The answer has to do with physiology and psychology- specifically male physiology.

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Girls and women are perfectly equipped by the Creator to be loving and caring- also with the opposite sex- without getting sexual. This is part of their femininity, which is relevant to their role in society especially connected with child-rearing and caring for the family. Hence nurses have traditionally been women. Thus in a boy-girl relationship, the girl can be affectionate in many ways- words, looks, affectionate touches, gestures, attention to details- without getting sexually stimulated.

But not a boy. Thus, a boy is not deed to spend many years with the object of his affection- his girlfriend- beside him, day in and day out, without getting on with it. Either that or he is subjected to a terrible strain to control his sexual drive. Thus, a steady relationship at college worse in high school can be a proximate occasion for going too far — at least where the guy is concerned. But since a steady relationship always includes a girl hopefully!

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The moral principle is that to deliberately open oneself to a proximate occasion of doing something wrong, one needs a proportionate reason- i. So when can one start going steady? Human acts are for their end: to act rationally, one must have an end in mind, and orient his action according to that end. Marriage is the end of courtship, just as final purchase is the end of shopping even when one is just window-shopping at the moment, he is normally looking forward to buying in the near future.

Thus, when to go steady is a function of the decision- approximate as it may be initially- of when to get married. Hence, the healthy age for girls to start going steady can be roughly computed:. Nevertheless, girls can really be quite flexible in their target marriage age: as soon as they have the right fellow, they really can get married. But not so with men, normally. Contemporary society imposes a minimum age for a man to get married well- i. He is expected to be able to set up house immediately after getting married- at least to be able to rent a flat.

In our society, this age is about years. It takes that much time for a fellow to graduate from college 21 years oldfind a suitable job after trying several 25 years oldstabilize himself in that job and get a few promotions years old. Nowadays a t family monthly income of P30, would barely enable a couple to rent a humble apartment in the metropolis, or buy a low-cost house on installment somewhere in Calabarzon. Thus, the minimum age for a man to get into a serious relationship with a woman can also be computed:.

Of course there are exceptions- e. Of course not. Knowing the opposite sex is part of the maturing process that coincides with high school and college years. Dating therefore forms part of a healthy college life. But dating is not going steady. Much less would one be committed to him or her in an exclusive relationship. And this is the key to the whole thing: non-exclusivity. Non-exclusivity is the very guarantee of non- seriousness and therefore non-involvement in those details of physical intimacy which are the run-up for sexual activity. Boys and girls should have many friends of the opposite sex in college and high school.

It is part of their educational process to discover different personalities of the opposite sex, precisely in order to be able to one day choose a partner for life. Some girls think that dating several guys would mean they are promiscuous. Quite the contrary, what such casual dating accomplishes is precisely that they avoid being physically promiscuous. Among other things because guys normally behave well- as in properly- with a female friend; he gets more daring with a girlfriend.

A last word on teen-age dating. Multiple dates should be the rule. Not only are they safer—goons will think twice before attacking two or more couples, they also provide a natural check against going too far in manifestations of affection. One of the greatest consolations in my life as a priest has been to see young people grow- physically and spiritually- into mature individuals, without suffering the scars of a badly-lived adolescence.

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An even greater joy comes from guiding some of them to lives of dedication to God and their fellow men. No less exhilarating is to see youthful romances bloom- all in their due time- into mature conjugal love and eventually marriage. Unfortunately, the past 30 years have seen Hollywood and the media glorify teen-age romantic relationships. Coupled with an eroticized environment, this has resulted in what is quite obvious to everyone now: an alarming increase in teen-age premarital sexual relationships, a rise in teen-age pregnancy, and on the whole a deterioration of sexual morality.

I hope reading this piece will make some teenagers reconsider their position and postpone any serious emotional involvement with a person of the opposite sex until the right moment. And if they are already too emotionally involved, at least to cool off a bit. But if they are hopelessly in lovethen I earnestly invite them to go to regular spiritual direction, to frequent the sacraments, and to embark on a no-nonsense struggle to develop the Christian virtues. That was how healthy teen-age romances were possible in the not too distant past. I, for one, am all too-ready and willing to help them through spiritual direction.

This updated article was printed by permission from the author. Universitas Foundation, Inc. Jomari Likha Umali Dr. Mygs Litao Bino Socrates Dr. Amiel Villanueva Elijah Rito Fr. Jaime B. However, I am more convinced each day that the occasion for possible failures in this regard can be minimized by postponing going steady until after college.

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In brief, we can lay down the following: 1st: Dating — the stage of boy-girl friendships, without any hint of exclusivity or any relation to the possibility of a future marriage. The Problem of Serial Monogamy Another consequence of teen-age steady relationships is the rise of a mentality which has been called serial monogamy- i. Conclusion One of the greatest consolations in my life as a priest has been to see young people grow- physically and spiritually- into mature individuals, without suffering the scars of a badly-lived adolescence.

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Looking to go steady

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GOING STEADY Is it ruining our teen-agers?