Betsy Hart: Dating no longer a path to marriage, and women partly to blame


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  • student mom salt lake city, UT
    March 26, 2013 4:44 p.m.

    We women really only have ourselves to blame for this article. Had we set a higher standard for the Deseret News they never would have printed it.

  • Gracie Boise, ID
    March 26, 2013 1:33 p.m.

    To The Real Maverick who said in several ways, "Again, I ask, if the world is one big horrible place and is becoming worse and worse then we should be subjecting fewer children not more to this hole of hopelessness until we get this world fixed."

    The world has been a mess for most of its existence. Even during anyone's long-enough lifetime he or she has heard the same moaning: why should we subject "the children" to any of it, recycled by generation. If we went by these criteria, nobody would have been born since the first few hundred years of recorded history at the very least. End of story. We obviously wouldn't be having the same discussion now.

    The point is to do well our own part, raise our families safely and with integrity, and stop obsessing over what we won't change. Who knows? Either we or our children might be the spark in our own spheres of influence to make the world better. That's worth, at the very least, these same, redundant arguments.

  • solsticelight Newport, OR
    March 26, 2013 1:31 p.m.

    Some of us tried to do it right, you know. I graduated High School, had a job, met a dreamy bad-boy who swept me off my feet but was also my bosses friend... we got married. I may have been only 17, but I was trying to do things in the right order. How was I to know that he would start beating me so severely I would almost die? Blame the woman though... we can take it. We handle everything with a smile... and then charge you child support.

  • UGradBYUfan Snowflake, AZ
    March 26, 2013 1:02 p.m.

    "So if the world is so bleak why should there be such a push to have kids? Subjecting them to such a horrible life? The sky is falling the sky is falling!"

    The issue is not that there is such a push to have kids. The problem is that the kids are still coming, but these children are being born without any functional scaffolding to prepare them to be healthy, productive individuals. A healthy family has been shown to the best way to support the healthy development of children. We need families with two committed parents. Dating has been the tool that is used to nurture a committed couple

  • johnnylingo62 Gray, TN
    March 26, 2013 11:52 a.m.

    The Real Maverick, forget about "size of cities" the fact is 48% of children born today are to UNWED Mothers - nationwide!
    The unraveling of the core family is causing the world to become "worse and worse place to live", but all hope is not lost - people can correct their mistakes. Today's social EXPERIMENTS and absolute tolerance for anything and everything will swing back to a more family-centered lifestyle when the "fruits of the labors" show so much rotten fruit is being left by the wayside.
    I like the saying: "If it's to be - it's up to me." We can start modifying our own thoughts and actions and help others know the alternate choices they can make to find true happiness. Following the Hollywood and D.C. media hype are not places to find happiness.
    Expecting more of yourself will help others expect more of themselves. What seems to be the easiest path may turn out to be the most painful path if you don't know where the path leads - there are consequences to every action.

  • rightascension Provo, UT
    March 26, 2013 10:28 a.m.

    or stated another way, "Courtship not a path to marriage and men are partly to blame, since they are the other other possibility in the equation.

  • axle Riverton, UT
    March 26, 2013 9:11 a.m.

    It has been my experience in life that you truly appreciate what you work for. If women want men to appreciate and respect them than they should make them earn it. I think marriages would last longer if women kept their standards high after marriage as well.

  • I-am-I South Jordan, UT
    March 26, 2013 8:09 a.m.

    This article was disappointing. It didn't say anything we didn't already know. The current dating culture (which here is Utah isn't as prevalent as it is in other places, but it still very much exists)is one lacking in formalities. We've lost our sense of propriety as a nation (thanks in great part to the 60's and 70's). This is affecting our culture in some ways negatively and in other ways it has been okay. Really dating is caught in an ugly cycle. Lack of formality created the hook up culture. The hook up culture reinforces itself through women who don't demand more and men who figure if they can get what they want for cheap why pay more.

    @Maverick, if you would like a more liberal newspaper I suggest the New York Times or the Huffington Post. I'm not a liberal, often I find these newspapers blatantly insult my belief systems. I also suggest taking the article with a grain of salt. It was disappointing and didn't say anything shocking at all. There was no need to get offended nor a need to take stabs at the conservatives.

  • BYU Track Star Los Angeles, CA
    March 25, 2013 1:39 p.m.

    Whoa, I think we are polarizing over the message instead of seeing who the Messenger is. Betsy Hart. (I wonder if she is related to the real Roxy Hart, from the Musical Chicago). Wikpedia says

    "Mrs. Hart (turns 50 this year) is the mother of four children and author of the book It Takes a Parent: How the Culture of Pushover Parenting is Hurting Our Kids... and What to Do About It. She is now divorced from her husband after 17 years of marriage. Betsy is raising her four young children in the suburbs of Chicago."

    Although her husband filed for divorce. Does her being a divorcee disqualify her from giving relationship/dating advice or color that POV? That's a hard call. She's done TV network interviews and they are on the internet. I'd be loathe to call her totally conservative without further research. Her educational background is in Russian Literature.

    I agree with some of the earlier comments that the bad economy is postponing alot of marriages to a degree.

  • Common Cents Lehi, UT
    March 25, 2013 12:58 p.m.

    Looking for benefits only? That reminds me of what my dogs have done over the years? As our morals become more "old fashioned" and people give in to their "natural" instincts rather then their brain and conscience, they become more and more like the rest of the animal kingdom, and more like the dogs.

  • RubytheCommentor roy, UT
    March 25, 2013 12:29 p.m.

    Between this and the Stubenville victim blaming I'm getting reallly sick of hearing that men are not responsible for their own actions and women invite the horrors that are dealt upon them by bad men. And this article from a woman no less? Shame on you.

  • K Mchenry, IL
    March 25, 2013 10:28 a.m.

    Women aren't married cause they are awake at 11:30 and willing to communicate through a text with the person they are in a relationship with? Seriously?

    Dating is to figure out if you are a good match. Not always going to meet your one and only the first time you date. The automobile means you don't have to marry someone who lives within 10 minutes of your home. That is a good thing.

  • terra nova Park City, UT
    March 25, 2013 8:48 a.m.

    It may seem lame to some, but there is wisdom in following the prophet. I am not advocating blind obedience. We should follow because we see.

    We all navigate our boats as best we can. It helps to know where the lighthouse is (and what it is). It may not stop the storms, but it can help you keep off the rocks.

  • raybies Layton, UT
    March 25, 2013 6:25 a.m.

    I'm seeing a lot of push back. Frankly, this surprises me. I just don't see any serious upside to the "Hookup" culture.

    How exactly is any of this good? I understand there's often a culture gap, but this isn't a gap, it's a chasm into which the bedrock of civilization is crumbling.

    Honestly, who will make the hard changes or sacrifice their own comforts anymore? Is the age of sacrifice gone? Are we just a bunch of sex gladiators living in one big social media colloseum where the unlucky ones are the ones whose birth control failed? So what about the casualties, cuz everything's casual?

    Are we really better off this way?

    Are we better people because of the hook-up culture? Are we better people because we treat each other with less respect, or take less responsibility or abandon those in need?

    What exactly is getting better? Has the casual availability of sexual encounters really made our nation any stronger?

    I admit this is a genie that won't go back in the bottle, and I don't see any easy fixes, but let's stop pretending it's not a problem.

  • ParkCityAggie Park City, Ut
    March 24, 2013 11:42 p.m.

    I agree, too many here need to put down the cane and stop talking about the darn kids and their darn rock and role music - every generation looks down on the next, they are lazy, don't do think like we did, yada yada yada "why back in my day" is a phrase that should never be uttered less you wanted to be looked upon as "that guy". Yes we know all about "your day" and things weren't so great and peachy like we tend to bias ourselves into believing. Yes most children born these days are born to unwed parents, it's a shame no doubt, but the overall birth is way down too! Yes people are waiting longer to get married and have kids, I'm sorry but this is not a bad thing. Let the kids go to school, get an education, have fun in college, why rush them to the alter? All to often we see these kind of marriages end up in divorce. What we we rather have? More quality marriages and less divorce, or just more marriages and more divorce? Especially if we're bringing kids into the equation.

  • Jack Aurora, CO
    March 24, 2013 8:08 p.m.

    This whole position is advocating the "R" word.........responsibility. There, I said it. Responsibility is the very thing folks want to avoid. They think if they can go through life without any responsibilities then all is good. Trouble is, this whole article revolves around taking responsibility for you own life. She on one hand, he on the other. That's why some here can't fathom the concept. Unfortunately, some here would impose their extreme view of marriage on you and then claim it's your idea... ie the teenage wife, property, arranged marriages. How about getting back to the article: courtship, talking with each other, finding someone with values in common, not just another pretty face. Dating and courtship, not hooking up and moving on. You should be looking for a suitable mate, not the next hot model.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    March 24, 2013 4:47 p.m.

    To "Bebyebe" go back and read the article. While the title implies that women are at fault, it is a shared problem. The women don't expect much, so the men respond with what little is expected.

    To "pragmatistferlife" don't make this a political issue. The facts are that this is destructive to the nation as a whole. You can't expect a healthy economy when the households and families are not healthy. As many studies point out, when there is a nurturing intact family with a father and mother present and involved at home, it reduces poverty and improves outcomes of their children.

    You also assume that the change is for the better. Is it really better when the changes being made will lead to disaster?

    To "Hutterite" blame must be assessed so that people can fix the problem. If we just said "wow its weird that society is crumbling and women and men are settling" and left it there, how would we know what corrections must be made to fix thing?

  • Tekakaromatagi Dammam, Saudi Arabia
    March 24, 2013 9:36 a.m.

    @The Real Maverick:

    Don't look a gift horse in the mouth. Mountainman is lamenting that there is an underclass in inner cities that are trapped in poverty because they are growing up without fathers.

    If he is not a bleeding heart liberal, maybe, he is becoming a bleeding heart conservative.

    Why oh why are you arguing with him over this issue?

  • A Man's Perspective Salt Lake City, UT
    March 22, 2013 10:52 p.m.


    "Why can't the DN have an article about men's responsibility in relationships?"

    Funny. I was going to comment: "About time a DN article about relationships doesn't center around men's responsibility!"

  • 10CC Bountiful, UT
    March 22, 2013 6:37 p.m.

    The traditional, idealized view of marriage is the husband is sufficiently economically successful that he can let his wife stay at home with the kids (if she wishes). This is certainly the historic expectation.

    More & more young males are concluding that expectation is difficult to achieve, and certainly more tenuous than it has been historically.

    It used to be that only slackers were fired. Now, even quite successful and competent people get "displaced"... it's nothing personal, you know, it's just business.

    And people wonder why young men (and even young women) are hesitant to commit to marriage and raising a family?

    I'm not excusing the "hook up" mentality, just explaining that there's some legitimate economic underpinnings to this behavior beyond just young men being averse to commitment because they want to be playboys.

    It's exactly the same factors that are causing the birthrate to plummet among young married couples. Economic anxiety. Lack of confidence that even if you work hard and study hard you'll be able to provide a solid middle class life for your family, without risk of becoming one of the 47%, a leech on society, an embarrassment to your family.

  • Mr DL Bel Air, MD
    March 22, 2013 2:19 p.m.

    A hundred years ago, generally speaking, a man married a virgin wife, usually 15-20 years old, and about 5-10 years younger than him. He earned the income and fixed up the house. She gave him sex, took care of the children, fixed every meal, cleaned the house, washed the clothes, darned socks, and followed his direction. They had a houseful of kids, and never divorced.

    Today, most women have a better education and equal earning opportunities as men. Most begin having sex as teenagers, perhaps 10 years before getting married. Few women wish want to stay home, raise a houseful of children, and cook, clean, wash, and care for the family. For young twenty-somethings in a relationship, it is usually the woman that wants to get married, settle down, and raise a kid or two. The man realizes that half of all marriages end in divorce, and that he is then financially on the hook for child support payments for 20 years.

    Unless the man is financially stable, really wants kids, and is ready to settle down, he's better off waiting. Rushing into marriage benefits no one.

  • DistantThunder Vincentown, NJ
    March 22, 2013 2:13 p.m.

    Right now we are dealing with a daughter in an abusive relationship. She didn't want to have sex before marriage, but he bullied her, called her a whore, threatened to hurt her - and so she gave in. We read about it in her journal which was left behind when she left our home to go to be with him. It's been 2 years, and while she seems upbeat, the gleam has gone from her eyes. She settled for less. She's only 20 and we hope she comes to her senses. She would never have wanted that for herself when she felt strong, but he wore her down.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    March 22, 2013 1:11 p.m.

    "70% of babies born in many cities are to single mothers."

    Newsflash conservatives: that number will only increase if you ban abortion.

  • Counter Intelligence Salt Lake City, UT
    March 22, 2013 12:12 p.m.

    @The Real Maverick
    The fact that you think an article stating that a changing dating culture has consequences for women if they settle, is merely "another doomsday article from the far right", actually says more about the histrionics of the far-left (and explains why I am not one of them).

    I thought leftists claimed to like women (oh - that’s right - they merely like power they derive from feigning concern for women, when in reality they will gladly throw any noncompliant women under the bus if she does not tow the party line)

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    March 22, 2013 11:43 a.m.

    Why is this something to which 'blame' must be assigned? Things change; that's the story of humanity.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    March 22, 2013 11:41 a.m.

    "Certainly not; but could our world be better? Certainly, yes!"

    Again, I ask, if the world is one big horrible place and is becoming worse and worse then we should be subjecting fewer children not more to this hole of hopelessness until we get this world fixed.

  • Anti Bush-Obama Washington, DC
    March 22, 2013 11:29 a.m.

    It's all about materialism and money now. Love takes a backseat to these things.

  • Cool Cat Cosmo Payson, UT
    March 22, 2013 11:10 a.m.

    @ The Real Maverick;

    In spite of Mountainman's vague definition of what constitutes a city, his point that the moral degradation of our country is having serious consequences is not invalidated by that. Is it the end of the world? Certainly not; but could our world be better? Certainly, yes!

  • sigmund5 Salt Lake City, UT
    March 22, 2013 10:52 a.m.

    The church is improving. These tarts are now only partially responsible.

  • Clarissa Layton, UT
    March 22, 2013 10:23 a.m.

    My mother taught me something and I lived by it: You can't have the milk without buying the cow. I deserved the best and would not settle for someone who would not commit to me without marriage first. I've been happily married for 23 years now. The cow won!

  • shhhh Davis County, UT
    March 22, 2013 10:11 a.m.

    Ya'll can be a little nasty. Yikes. I'm for the traditional family always. But I'm also for those that don't have that. I think we should try to get people the best situation that we can.

    And I'm part of the "new" generation and there aren't that many of us putting out our "lines" hoping for a nibble. There is still common sense out there, at least a little.

  • KJB1 Eugene, OR
    March 22, 2013 9:25 a.m.

    Just because someone isn't married and having kids by the time they're twenty-two doesn't mean the world is coming to an end. Too much of this article seems to be bemoaning women having more of a say instead of just sitting around waiting to be "courted." If you want to get technical, "traditional marriages" in history tended to be arranged by the parents for the sake of property. Is that what we should go back to?

    pragmastistferlife is right: people and their societies change. The Utah Mormon ideal isn't the only way to live.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    March 22, 2013 9:12 a.m.

    @ Mountainman

    "Families are the incubator for all societies. Destroy the family and you destroy society. We ignore that fact at our peril and it matters not whether its Orem or Detroit."

    Thanks for clarifying things for me.

    So essentially you have no idea what you're talking about. A city could be New York City or Dayton, Idaho. Your stats are meaningless as they have no definition or context. Take a stats 101 class.

    Good day to you sir.

  • FDRfan Sugar City, ID
    March 22, 2013 9:05 a.m.

    "And no, I'm not arguing that doing the right thing will always get you the right relationship you crave.

    But this much is true: While men are wonderful, we women typically set the standard when it comes to relationships. And social media aside, if we set it low, it will inevitably be met."

    Women are sending out very strong messages about the relationships they crave. Who wants to be settled for?

  • Mountanman Hayden, ID
    March 22, 2013 8:50 a.m.

    @ Real Maverick. Families are the incubator for all societies. Destroy the family and you destroy society. We ignore that fact at our peril and it matters not whether its Orem or Detroit.

  • FDRfan Sugar City, ID
    March 22, 2013 8:51 a.m.

    Cannot read anything on this site because of Kennecot Copper's annoying pop up.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    March 22, 2013 8:43 a.m.

    @ Mountainman

    "Want proof this is happening? 70% of babies born in many cities are to single mothers."

    Is 70 percent of our (newborn) population born in cities? How much of our population is born in "cities?" What classifies "a city" as such? Is Orem a city? Is Salt Lake a city? Is Chicago a city? What exactly is a "city?"

    So if the world is so bleak why should there be such a push to have kids? Subjecting them to such a horrible life? The sky is falling the sky is falling!

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    March 22, 2013 8:38 a.m.

    higv said: "There are a few women that say things like I already dated you, want to date other people, don't want to date same guy twice. Thing is it takes two to tangle and some women put off marriage or turn down everyone too."

    What ever happend to "settling?" hahahahahaha

    Morally casual city girls are to blame for 70% of Americas Problem, Got It!

  • pragmatistferlife salt lake city, utah
    March 22, 2013 8:28 a.m.

    You know conservatives, the world just simply changes, and people change with it..get used to it. The wasup kids with their eyes glued to their phones, and the attention span of a nat irritate the heck out of me when I'm around them but then again my grandfather thought rock and roll would virtually destroy the world, and look what it led to 30 years later..Ronald Regan..well maybe that's a bad example but you get the point.

    I love when I grew up. It was a sweet spot in world history for working folks that has been destroyed now and probably won't be duplicated again, but then again I'm white and male and didn't have a female boss until I was nearly 50...so the world changes. BTW, conservatives, the technology of social media is the same technology of robotic manufacturing..productivity increases.

  • Mountanman Hayden, ID
    March 22, 2013 7:57 a.m.

    @ Real Maverick. Want proof this is happening? 70% of babies born in many cities are to single mothers. Most crimes committed in America are perpetrated by young men with no father in the home. The largest demographic of people living below the poverty line in America is single mothers. You may call it doomsday information from conservatives but the truth is conservatives have always stood for family values. Its your side that embraces alternative lifestyles but don't want the inevitable consequences. Think its bad out there now? Doomsday or not,wait until the next generation of "liberated" from what they call "stereotypes of family values" hits the streets!

  • higv Dietrich, ID
    March 22, 2013 7:31 a.m.

    There are a few women that say things like I already dated you, want to date other people, don't want to date same guy twice. Thing is it takes two to tangle and some women put off marriage or turn down everyone too.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    March 22, 2013 7:18 a.m.

    Another doomsday article from the far right.

    If the world is going into the toilet, why then is there such a push to date, marry, and have kids? Why would we want to subject children to a world so bleak of hope and so dark as conservatives want to portray it?

  • Bebyebe UUU, UT
    March 22, 2013 6:52 a.m.

    Why can't the DN have an article about men's responsibility in relationships?