Comments about ‘17 dating rules for my sons’

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Published: Friday, May 23 2014 2:45 p.m. MDT

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Crisco B
Salt Lake City, UT

Another document indicating the "Demands of a Dating Diva." We must begin to recognise that the dative paradigm is not the be all end all of society.

Mark from Montana
Davis County, UT

I have four daughters and have a list of rules for boys that have wanted to date them. Here are two of them;

1. If you are in the driveway honking, you better be delivering a pizza because my daughter will never be picked up that way for a date.

2. If you have trouble keeping your jeans pulled up all the way, I can help with that problem. I have two power staplers I am happy to use to prevent the sagging pant problem.

Murray, UT

The best method of creating a lousy relationship? Begin dating with a list of behavioral demands...

Salt Lake City, UT

It is rules like this that create what we call the dating game. It creates an atmosphere of princesses looking for the perfect man. I want my daughters to look a lot more for a man who is a good quality person, not just a butler or a prince. Let's face it, a knight in shining armor might open all your doors and kiss the lady's hand, but men wearing plates of metal went out of vogue and practicality some 500 years ago.

Houston, TX

My mother taught me a similar set of dating etiquette rules, and they have served me well. My wife and I have been married 40 years, and I work hard to still apply them in our relationship. Being married to a princess is a wonderful thing if she treats you like a prince.

Detroit, MI

I find many of the author's viewpoints to be outdated for the generation of girls her boys will eventually date. I also believe some of her instructions are confusing and even paradoxical. If she were my mother when I was dating I would have eventually tuned her out and just winged it, which isn't so good for a young man to conclude he has to do. Bottom line, I recommend dialing it down a couple of notches if you don't want these 17 rules to backfire on you.

Cougar Claws
Lindon, UT

I think this is a well-intended article and it says good things that young men should do but the vibe I get from the article is really one-sided and unsettling. It wreaks of "okay boys, here everything you are responsible to do, and oh by the way, good luck, it's all you!" I was raised and taught to do all of these things, and I've done a lot of them with a smile on my face, but I've had jack success in dating. While I still agree it is important to treat women with respect and to be a gentleman, I think young men, (particularly in this LDS market) feel overwhelmed with everything "required" of us when it comes to dating. Besides which, in this new generation of feminism, women aren't exactly making it easier for us, nor are they doing a whole lot to encourage us, to fulfill our roles as men. As an older single person, I know this doesn't do a whole lot to encourage me, but it rather reminds me of everywhere I fall short, and I doubt I'm the only one who feels that way.

Kalutara , 00

Nice sexist article so in return what you propose for daughters. Never ever leave the kitchen.

Salt Lake City, UT

I think these are excellent ideals to teach sons. And for the naysayers who say these ideals are too high in this day and age: It is better to aim for the stars and miss by a mile than to aim for a pile of manure and hit it dead center. By teaching sons the proper way to treat a lady they are more likely to find those daughters who have been raised to act like a lady. Don't forget to teach them to take their dates on occasional outings where they must experience getting dirty though... camping, hiking, fishing, or even volunteering to help build with an organization like Habitat for Humanity, etc. Those kind of activities will really weed out the princesses.

Salt Lake City, UT

The negative comments about this excellent article are clearly symtomatic of the selfish, cynical attitude in our society that has replaced kindness and good manners in relationships between men and women. I do agree, however, that the suggestions, if possible, should be adapted and followed by young women as well as young men. To you readers taking issue with the author's points, is the list of dating suggestions "old fashioned," inapplicable to our "advanced" society, not "hip" enough for you, or even laughable? They couldn't possibly appeal to those of the "me" generation, many of whom forget that "love" is a verb, not a feeling, and is exhibited through caring service and courteous behavior to one's partner. Perhaps lack of adherence to the author's suggestions, both during courtship and during marriage, will be a major contributing factor if one's relationships fail.

Vernal, UT

Hey Team Watkins,

An additional amendment to rule # 6:

No prolong kissing in a parked car and the violation of this rule will result in seeing your Mom's camouflaged face with a bandanna on her head staring you down through the driver's window........LOL!

Laura Bilington
Maple Valley, WA

Many of these rules are sexist and are a terrible preparation for marriage. Opening a car door for someone who is perfectly capable of opening it herself does not show respect. This sort of relationship morphs into one where a husband who opens car doors but wouldn't even dream of cleaning a toilet, wiping up mess, getting up to calm and diaper a howling baby before he brings it to his wife to nurse, or learning to cook so he can have dinner ready when she comes home from work.

Spanish Fork, UT

Excellent suggestions. Thanks for a great article.

Laura Bilington
Maple Valley, WA

@Mayhem Mike, caring service and courteous behavior to one's partner is shown when they split the cost of dates 50-50, or whatever is reasonable given the relative incomes of each person. Caring service and courteous behavior toward one’s parents is shown when you pay for your own wedding instead of treating the bride’s parents as cash cows to put on a show when the Princess gets married. Caring service and courteous behavior to one's guests is shown when you don’t play Bridezilla and put on half dozen parties prior to the wedding and expect people to bring gifts to each.
One of my sons married a girl with the surname of Russell. She was the last of the Russells and didn’t want to change her name. Neither of them liked hyphened names. So he changed his surname to Russell.

As far as evidence of “caring service and courteous behavior to one's partner”, I’ll take that over a thousand door-openings.

Las Vegas, NV

Your assuming your son(s) will want to date girls. Your teaching him that dating girls is the only option, which is not the case. This assumption puts a huge amount of pressure on your boys and really in a way teaches discrimination. What if your son is gay and is attracted to males. Consider teaching your son(s) to date whomever they are attracted to, not "it has to be a girl" and let them know you will love whomever they date. The same rules can apply from your unrealistic list of expectations, but you won't be sending a hateful message to your son who may not want to date girls. Think about!

Brent T. Aurora CO
Aurora, CO

Really people? Enjoyed the article. Then started seeing the disparaging comments. Did I miss something? Went back and re-read these 17 tips and found absolutely no shred of bad advice, anything remotely dated or chauvinistic or sexist or condescending... absolute, solid advice that if anything, isn't conclusive.

Panama City, FL

As a mother of 3 boys, I thought this article was spot on. So as I came to the conclusion and read the first few comments I was shocked it was viewed negatively! These are all things I expect my sons to be doing/do when they date. I taught them to open doors for strangers too! (GASP!) I'm not sure why everyone keeps bringing up the word outdated. When did being polite and treating women with respect go out of style??

Laura Bilington
Maple Valley, WA

Jenjen4, You are confusing courtesy and respect. Courtesy and care is shown when you open a door for someone burdened with packages or children. Opening car doors for able-bodied people of either gender is not respect. The idea that women are delicate flowers who will wilt if they are not waited on --but who, as wives are expected to provide for your every need---is as outdated as the notion that women should only work as secretaries, nurses or teachers.

True respect is shown when you treat all people--women included--as equals. If you want your sons to succeed in the workforce, they need to learn that.

There is no reason that each dating party can pay for their own dates via their own money (or their allowances, if that’s their source of money). Telling your sons that you will provide money so that they can pay for the full cost of their dates does not show respect for the dates nor your sons. Making an automatic “the guy pays” rule sets women up for a “he paid for it, so I have to do whatever he wants” rationale.

Vernal, UT

@ Laura Billington

Women are to be treated with respect at all times. This includes opening doors for them. If there is a woman standing in a room, and there is not enough chairs for them to sit down, a true man would immediately stand up to give then a place to sit. A true man, like myself, shows respect and concern for women and girls at all times.

Salt Lake City, UT

The interesting thing about many of the comments here is that the Pro comments seem to come mainly from people who are well past the dating age. As someone who is single, believe me when I say that dating is different than when you got married. It has drastically morphed in even the last decade. Accept this. I treat girls with courtesy and respect. My mother taught me this. And she despises the suit of armor chivalry. If you believe in that for your marriage and make it work, great. But understand that the culture has changed. I know that this encroaches on the little red school house "good ol' days" dating at the local dance hall paradigm, but we need to allow the natural social progress to occur. I have found that I can both treat girls with utmost respect and also allow them to open their own door. And girls of my single culture hav I'm great and large part embraced this concept. Some of the comments here reflect the complete myopia toward the modern singles culture. The movement is toward a more equal yoking of the husband and wife.

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