Ask Angela: I will not date girls in my ward

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  • desert Potsdam, 00
    Dec. 3, 2013 12:46 p.m.

    Most people think dating is the door toward marriage, it is not, never has.
    You cannot go dating and expect to get married.There is no Math to it.

    People who will get married some time, are ending up dating, like a blind date,
    but they use dating as an excuse to not show their feelings at first,
    that what dating is for, but without the form of "dating" people would still get married.

    There is another purpose in dating, to get to know as many as possible and to help out in times of uncertainty, as long as we live up to certain standards.

    BYU is an example how you can handle this stuff some way to create very bad feelings by isolating people into groups, who is for return miss., who is for fast marriage etc.
    Dating is to have fun and enjoy our social life, not to calculate a trip to Mars.
    Love is another dimension, dating is just plain upps, nice to get to know you.

  • junkgeek Agua Dulce, TX
    Sept. 1, 2013 9:31 a.m.

    LDS women need to be taking dating matters into their own hands these days.

    Aug. 30, 2013 2:16 p.m.

    Wow! What a luxury to be able to be able have that kind of response to a dating request. Only in Utah, I suppose. Not here in the "mission field". I'm glad I didn't limit myself like that, or I wouldn't have gotten to know, date, court and wed my now eternal companion. She happened to be in the same ward I attended at the time.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 29, 2013 12:24 p.m.

    "The men need to get out of their recliners and start dating! And, yes, dating the women in their wards!"

    Easier said than done. When I was an LDS member I had way higher success rates getting non-members to actually accept a date (4 of around 10) than members (a whole 0 out of about a dozen there).

    @Brother Benjamin Franklin
    "The fact that people can be this picky in Utah astounds me."

    Guys can. The LDS singles age 20-40 (or something like that) in Utah is around a 3:2 ratio women:men, the most extreme gender imbalance the church has had.

  • Jim Hippen Palmyra, NY
    Aug. 27, 2013 7:16 p.m.

    Young men are so gutless today. My friends and I had an unspoken contest going, where we dated as many young women in our ward as possible. We often extended it to other wards in the area. We considered it our responsibility to date the girls who didn't have as many dating opportunities as the more popular girls. They were usually a lot more fun. We also made it a policy to double date as much as possible. There was one 'messy' break-up when I had dated one girl frequently. She and her best friend would ask if we could double, so I was with both girls a lot. I quit that scene when I realized that I liked her best friend a lot more. I eventually married the best friend, but I had to overcome the stigma of being the jerk who 'dumped' my future wife's best friend.

    Get some courage, guys!

  • Kazbert VAIL, AZ
    Aug. 27, 2013 6:50 p.m.

    Being in the same community with an ex bf/gf is part of growing up. The absence of face-to-face contention isn't peace. We Mormons don't know how to resolve differences charitably. Instead, the women gossip and the men feign smiles. Taking the easy way out in all kinds of relationships is selfish, lazy, and cowardly.

    And this is far more than a "Utah Mormon" problem. I've lived in many locales across the U.S. and I've seen it everywhere I've been while raising my own kids.

  • sisucas San Bernardino, CA
    Aug. 27, 2013 4:01 p.m.

    When I got into the singles ward world I was blown away by the attention from all the girls. My friendliness was too oftern interpreted as interest and I got asked out so much I couldn't handle it any more. I was too much of a wuss to just tell girls I wasn't interested in them and often made policies, including one exactly like this. It's hard to get asked out all the time when you have other priorities and other people you want to spend time with. In the end, I married a girl from my singles ward. It's hard for nice guys to say no. Cut this young guy some slack and move on.

  • BeThouHumble Los Angeles, CA
    Aug. 27, 2013 3:54 p.m.

    "I will not date girls in my ward"

    Translation: I use this excuse to more easily avoid girls in my ward who I am not attracted to.

  • Cinci Man FT MITCHELL, KY
    Aug. 26, 2013 10:24 a.m.

    I never dated any girls in my ward in high school, but after my mission and away at school, I was assigned to home teach 8 girls. I dated one on the first Sunday night I met them (they invited me to dinner). After dating her 30 days straight, we got engaged and two months later were married in the temple. We have had 37 years together and enjoy a wonderful life with our children and grandchildren. I was too shy to ask girls in the ward out in high school, but we had lots of parties and activities together and I enjoyed all my great friends. After my mission, my agenda changed, and I don't regret dating a girl in my ward at all - not one bit.

  • Steven S Jarvis Orem, UT
    Aug. 26, 2013 10:12 a.m.

    If you date ONE girl in the ward, it is like you are dating ALL the girls in the ward.

  • Incite Full Layton, UT
    Aug. 26, 2013 10:04 a.m.

    I suppose a guy or girl might have this policy, but it's kind of an illogical policy, though. The reason singles wards exist is to give singles an opportunity to meet without the confusion that comes from trying to find them in your area/stake home wards.

    You might as well stay in your home ward and date folks from singles wards, if that were your true motivation. While I can see how a close dating relationship between two singles might cause you to get a reputation, the turnover in singles wards is usually such that it shouldn't be a serious concern.

    IMO, Just stay in your home ward you have no intention of dating those in your singles ward.

  • TiCon2 Cedar City, UT
    Aug. 26, 2013 9:49 a.m.

    "Wardies." Kind of applicable during high school, not so much after that. Grow up.

  • Shawnm750 West Jordan, UT
    Aug. 26, 2013 9:39 a.m.

    I can see both sides of this one. Growing up, I didn't date girls in my ward. Not because they weren't nice or that I found them unattractive, but because I had know most of them my whole life, seeing them every day at school and every Sunday at church, I'd become to see them as almost like family. But, I also felt that there were plenty of opportunities to meet people outside of my ward.

    Being older now (and having had to re-enter the dating scene,) I've learned that dating can be (and should be) more about having fun than some people let it. As others have said, "dating" is about getting to know someone. "Courting" is when things go to the next level and you start considering whether that person is someone you'd like marry. It's a concept that's been lost in contemporary culture.

    To the young woman who asked the question: he said "no" (for whatever reason.) The world's still turning, so it's time to move on.

  • The Rock Federal Way, WA
    Aug. 26, 2013 9:32 a.m.

    When I was at BYU I had people tell me never to date girls from my ward. I thought they were nuts. If there was a cute girl that lived in my ward that I was interested in, I asked her out. Student wards were mobile enough that it was never an issue.

    I have also lived in Pennsylvania. If you didn't date girls from your ward you had a minimum 50 to 75 mile drive to date an LDS girl.

  • moniker lewinsky Taylorsville, UT
    Aug. 26, 2013 9:28 a.m.

    Reading stories like this, it's really hard not to be flooded with really negative memories. I spent a total of five years in the same university ward. The last two (following a painful breakup with a non-mormon) were spent staying home Friday and Saturday night and then attending church on Sunday for a lecture on dating. Granted, those lectures were probably intended for the men. But still... It would have been nice to be asked out now and then. I was asked out by a total of two guys and I wasn't interested in either of them, but at least I gave it a chance. My LDS parents are currently in some sort of leadership position in a student ward and from what I hear, things haven't gotten much better for any girl who isn't trophy wife material. It ended for the best because "non" and I eventually wed. I wouldn't change things. In case anybody is wondering, I wasn't carrying around more than a few extra vanity lbs and there was nothing I can think of that made me undateable.

  • JP71 Ogden, UT
    Aug. 26, 2013 8:16 a.m.

    To be as nice as possible this guy was just using this answer as a nice way to say no thanks. If a man really finds a girl attractive he will overlook any “rules” he may have. That being said, don’t take it personally. Just because one person isn’t attracted to you doesn’t mean you are not attractive to someone else. People have different likes and dislikes.

  • Brother Benjamin Franklin Orem, UT
    Aug. 26, 2013 3:28 a.m.

    The fact that people can be this picky in Utah astounds me. I guess if someone doesn't want to date someone in their ward they don't have to, due to the proximity and seeing people regularly issues. But there ought to be a realization that at some point if you're interested you will have to do things that involve a degree of calculated risk to succeed.

    There are no easy answers to this because people and situations all are different. You have to take the situation you have and do the best you can. It always helps if you have experience dating others, or if you can draw on the experiences and wisdom of others, particularly though who are newly married or close to your age.

    Drawing on parent's, bishop's, and others wisdom is also helpful on occasion. Keep it to people who are relevant, trustworthy, sensitive, and close to you. Keep in mind, though, that their advice is going to be based on what they have seen and experienced in their lives too. You are going to get different perspectives.

    Ultimately, the decision and the consequences are yours to live with.

  • gburns52 Milford, UT
    Aug. 26, 2013 3:05 a.m.

    A girl from my singles ward asked me out. It turned real messy. At one point I even had to take out a restraining order. Was it because we were in the same ward or that she asked me out(reflecting on her aggressive personality)? I have a feeling he would be willing to date within his ward, but was leery about dating a girl that would ask a guy out and was giving excuses. Take excuses for what they are, someone cares enough to try and not hurt your feelings.

  • moniker lewinsky Taylorsville, UT
    Aug. 26, 2013 2:15 a.m.

    Really, Beart.
    I, personally, have never asked a guy out. Not my style. But I think your attitude is extremely sexist. There are plenty of "non-aggressive" ways that a woman could casually invite a man out.

    I agree that he'd probably break his policy for somebody who was more of a dream girl. He's just not that into her.

  • utah cornhusker NORFOLK, NE
    Aug. 25, 2013 11:20 p.m.

    I dated some guys in my last ward in utah and they were nothing but bonafide jerks. I had given up on marriage and so i came home for a visit with my family in nebraska and met my future husband while visiting back here.

  • Serenity Manti, UT
    Aug. 25, 2013 9:37 p.m.

    Well, dear, never mind what his motive. That was a snobbish thing to say at best. The best thing to do is laugh it off and move on. Personally, I met my husband at college and we made sure we had as many classes together as possible. We truly enjoyed each other's company. Don't even pay attention to that snob. Find someone who appreciates you and wants to be near you because he likes you.

  • ulvegaard Medical Lake, Washington
    Aug. 25, 2013 6:15 p.m.

    When in the Single's Ward many years ago, I asked out a young lady I found interesting. She responded with a resounding "No", saying "There is a church policy that a person can't date her home teacher."

    I was still laughing a week later. There is no such church policy, of course. She just didn't want to go out with me -- and that is fine, that decision spared me a great deal of anguish later on.

    The young lady in this article may one day learn that each 'No' quite often brings happiness later on. Its never worth forcing. What we often deal with is a blow to our ego as such responses suggest that there is something wrong with us. This is seldom the case, though we should always endeavor to be more than we currently are and not worry about all the negative responses we get and hold out of the 'Yes' that is worth the wait.

  • Vernal Mom Vernal, UT
    Aug. 25, 2013 5:30 p.m.

    Thanks for a good answer, Angela. Also, thanks to Dennis and Ry Guy.

    Dating has REALLY changed since my days in college where we all dated the guys in our ward, got to know many,and then most paired up and got married. Mix it up, is great advice....and we have made dating way to serious! Come on, I tell my 17 year old son. It's just a date, not a relationship or marriage! But I guess times have changed. I am longing for the days of dating lots of people so you can know what is a good fit for you, and who you would like to marry someday.

  • OnlyInUtah Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Aug. 25, 2013 4:00 p.m.

    Accepting a date isn't a commitment to marriage nor is it a commitment to go on another date. The young man could have gone on the date and shown this girl a fun time. When I was young I dated many "friends" in my singles ward and we remained friends. Dating is about getting to know others. I think the young man was rude and selfish. She's better off without this guy in her life.

  • Brent T. Aurora CO Aurora, CO
    Aug. 25, 2013 3:33 p.m.

    For whatever reason I took the question as coming from a teenager pre-missionary age rather than a post-missionary, singles ward. Concerning the former, I weigh strongly against one-on-one serious dating within a ward; and group dating (or church/school activities) is natural, fun, no pressure and best. Within a singles ward however, this would be an exclusionary move thwarting the gods who move chess pieces into place.

  • dtday2003 Rabat, Morocco, 00
    Aug. 25, 2013 3:29 p.m.

    I think the most telling thing in this question is not that the man said no, It's that SHE had to ask HIM! One of the biggest problems in the singles wards are that many women don't get asked out on dates and so feel that they need to be asking the men in order to date at all. I know the brethren have commented on this again and again. The men need to get out of their recliners and start dating! And, yes, dating the women in their wards!

  • samuelbradshaw Provo, UT
    Aug. 25, 2013 3:28 p.m.

    I think nothing's wrong with dating someone in your ward (particularly and especially a Young Single Adult Ward!). First, it's practical – you live close to each other. Second, you get to know them well because you go to different ward events and activities together – you get to see them from many angles "in context" of their lives, and you make sure the most important parts of their lives – their priorities – are aligned with yours.

    In a place where there are many YSA wards (in my case, Provo, UT), dating someone seriously in another ward can easily keep you from being able to participate fully in your own ward. To those who are dating people in another ward, I would offer the suggestion to not miss out on your own ward or allow your significant other to miss out on theirs. Participate fully where you are and you will make many friends and be given many opportunities to serve others and grow in faith. If you are able to participate in your own ward and in the other ward, then all the better – but don't uproot yourself from your own ward.

  • ImABeliever Provo, UT
    Aug. 25, 2013 3:20 p.m.

    I can see why people don't want to date others in the ward. It is called, gossip, gossip, gossip.... I refuse to date anybody from work. One day I got off work and there was a note on my truck window that said, "Hey handsome, are you dating anyone." I ignored it.
    I guess it is good they didn't sign the note. lol.

  • eagle Provo, UT
    Aug. 25, 2013 1:07 p.m.

    I found my wife at my workplace, my sister found her husband at the bay, my younger brother found his wife at a single's ward. Whatever works...

    Aug. 25, 2013 1:02 p.m.

    I met my husband within the BYU 4th ward - a ward which had some 50+ marriages each calandar year, about half the couples being within the ward (and not counted twice). And yeah, occasionally We used to joke that it was the highest marrying ward at BYU and consequently the whole church! Don't know if that's really true, but wards are at least great places to get to know people whether or not it turns into something more. There are other great places too.

  • rsrino New Canaan, CT
    Aug. 25, 2013 11:39 a.m.

    I married someone from my ward as did my sister and daughter. We would have all missed out if we had a no ward dating policy.

  • cjb Bountiful, UT
    Aug. 25, 2013 10:59 a.m.

    There are no good opportunities to meet guys?

    School and church dances

    Internet dating sites

    Find a worthy cause and volunteer

    Three ideas, lots of opportunities.

  • Winglish Lehi, UT
    Aug. 25, 2013 9:32 a.m.

    I once dated a girl from my ward and it was one of the worst decisions I ever made. It was awkward seeing this girl all the time, especially when one or the other of us brought dates along. I forever wished I had never dated a girl in my home ward. In fact, I still wish I had never done it. There is nothing but painful memories there. I totally respect the guy's decision to date girls from outside the ward.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    Aug. 25, 2013 8:26 a.m.

    Maybe you should think outside the box. The one with the pointy stick on it. There's a whole world of adventure out there just outside the expectations everyone has of you, and this is a good time to exercise that option.

  • TimBehrend Auckland NZ, 00
    Aug. 25, 2013 7:37 a.m.

    Beart, how did you get from a woman asking a man out on a date to a woman who is aggressive and misunderstands church leaders' advice about marriage? Projection?

  • Vienna25 Anchorage, AK
    Aug. 25, 2013 7:12 a.m.

    I've never been a fan of needing a reason to say no to a date. Reasons seem to offer a solvable problem, which sometimes just isn't the case. (You don't date in the ward boundaries, so let me move!) Let a no be a no, and a yes be a yes.

    But don't we all have reasons to date or not date someone? At times, the reasons are superficial and naive; as experience and wisdom come into play we begin to judge our dates with a more eternal set of standards.

  • osmir Brasil, 00
    Aug. 24, 2013 9:34 p.m.

    i lived in a little city... in my ward there are not girls...
    i need travel for 70 km for dates.
    for many years, my dream was to date a girl from my ward...

  • rlsintx Plano, TX
    Aug. 24, 2013 9:16 p.m.

    Messy ? If you conduct yourself with integrity, it's highly unlikely to happen.

  • Canyontreker TAYLORSVILLE, UT
    Aug. 24, 2013 6:33 p.m.

    If he's not dating inside the Singles Ward, then he's cementing his feet for the long haul. Move on. Singles Wards are supposed to be messy.

  • Aggielove Cache county, USA
    Aug. 24, 2013 5:40 p.m.

    Found my wife in my ward. So I'm fully against this point.

    Aug. 24, 2013 3:58 p.m.

    That's one of the problems with dating today. We have made a date too serious. Going out on dates is just how you get to know a person. When my mom dated, she went on 4 or 5 dates a week, mainly with just friends. Some of them turned into more serious relationships. But now we won't ask someone out unless we think they could be "the one". Just go out, have a good time and be adults. We give up too easily.....if we don't "feel it" early on we give up.

    There was a girl I took out a couple times, went ok...didn't really feel the spark. A month later we met at a party and I thought maybe I should try once more. 16 months later we were married. Don't give up too soon!

    Aug. 24, 2013 1:03 p.m.

    This is what happens to aggressive women, and some men, who take too seriously the advice to get married, so that it becomes more of a hunt than an opportunity to meet someone and actively court to see if marriage is right, I have met too many people, especially LDS women, who seem to have a "revelation" over nearly every eligible man he meet. The commandment was never to have caused people to be desperate, and I think the high leadership would say this. It is just so many of our peers and untrained local leaders who apply a little too much pressure. If he ooncerned woman in the article just backs off a bit, maybe good things will happen, certainly better than those that come about through unnecessary pressure. If local leaders tell you otherwise, they are dead wrong.

  • onceuponatime Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 24, 2013 12:44 p.m.

    I guess the excuses guys use are just as a lame as the excuses girls use.

  • Gildas LOGAN, UT
    Aug. 24, 2013 12:41 p.m.

    The only girl who ever asked me out was one that I just was not attracted to in any way. I declined her invitation respectfully and avoided making excuses.

    Since the tradition is for the boy to ask the girl out it is usually the boy who risks rejection and I well recall that rejection as embarrassing and sometimes almost devastating. You feel you might become the subject of gossip too as some people can't seem to mind their own business. I can see why someone might look beyond their ward though not to avoid a "messy" breakup.

    When a girl decides to be the date maker I think that she usually does it subtly and with careful thought. Not a bad idea as you can avoid hurt, overt rejection, and embarrassment on both sides, by approaching date making indirectly or by doing some "market research" first. Conversations in the hallway or the classroom can often give you plenty of information as to whether an individual likes you and how well you are likely to get along for instance.

    Hmm, I wish I had been as thoughtful as that when I was younger.

  • Scott H Ogden, UT
    Aug. 24, 2013 11:34 a.m.

    In real life, most guys with such exclusionary dating policies would make an exception in the blink of an eye if a girl that particularly catches their fancy were to ask them out. Many guys will use excuses like this to avoid saying they're simply not interested.

    Guys and gals have to meet somewhere. How many young adults really want to rope off one of the biggest sections of their potential dating pool where they mix with others that hold similar beliefs?

    Still, since it is extremely difficult to see into the heart and mind of another, it is best to accept the young man's declaration at face value and move on.

  • Vladhagen Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 24, 2013 11:02 a.m.

    It is a great move by this girl to ask this boy on a date. An understanding of mutual prerogative in finding a spouse is refreshing. Some men have "policies" against dating ladies in their ward. It is perhaps not the best approach, but I do not think that most men use this as a personal stab at a girl. Hence this lady just needs to try again with someone else and look for someone better suited to her paradigm.

  • flatlander Omaha, NE
    Aug. 24, 2013 10:21 a.m.

    My seminary class which included all four grades only had 8 kids, half girls. They were more like sisters. Everybody I knew dated non members but they did live within our ward boundaries (10 miles by 20 miles). (Stake was 7 hours across). We did love seeing Mormon girls at youth conference when three states got together. ( states is not a typo)

  • Brave Sir Robin San Diego, CA
    Aug. 24, 2013 9:14 a.m.


    You SHOULD have an escape hatch open all the way to the altar. That's the purpose of dating and engagement. That's why we don't get married the first time we meet. It's because we need time to figure out if we're compatible. Gordon B. Hinckley said "be married with your eyes half shut, but date with your eyes wide open." Just because two people are dating doesn't mean they're obligated to get married - using the "escape hatch" is normal, necessary, and expected.

  • Dennis Harwich, MA
    Aug. 24, 2013 8:31 a.m.

    Young men can be so clueless. I dated a lot of girls in the ward growing up and don't regret a one of them. 45 years later I'm still good friends with many of them.
    I don't understand the "all or nothing" mentality of both the girls and guys. Mix it up. Enjoy one another. There's a lot to be learned from someone other that your BFF.

  • NDM Vienna, Austria
    Aug. 24, 2013 8:17 a.m.

    Talk about a "Utah Mormon" problem!

  • BlakeR St Joseph, MI
    Aug. 24, 2013 8:06 a.m.

    Great answer, as usual. I would just add one other reason for which this sister should not feel bad. The comment " case things get messy", says a lot about this brother's dating perspective. Do you really want to date someone who has the escape hatch open all the way to the alter?

  • Eliyahu Pleasant Grove, UT
    Aug. 24, 2013 7:39 a.m.

    I can understand where the guy is coming from. It's much like dating women in your workplace or in your apartment building. The danger is that an unpleasant breakup leaves both of them still having to encounter the other on a daily basis. Still, we have to take some risks to find the right person and can't always play it safe. It would be unfortunate to miss the perfect soulmate just because she lives near you.

  • george of the jungle goshen, UT
    Aug. 24, 2013 7:04 a.m.

    I have a code of conduct
    1. Watch what you say.
    2. don't take what some one said to you to hart or personally.
    3. Never assume any thing.
    4. Always do your best.

    That's the basic ones You can add Do no harm , Leave it better than you found it . Honor your parents. Their is a lot of rules but the thing is you have to have your own boundary, limits and standard.