Courting Instead of Dating: 7 Reasons Why You Need To Try It
What is Courting?
To court someone comes from the word courtship. It describes the period of time before two people enter a relationship. The word courtship can mean many things to different cultures, with some describing it as an inherently religious practice. But, courtship wasn’t born out of any religious scripture. In fact, in the 1800s it was the standard way of pursuing someone with the intent of marriage.
Simply put - courting is the time before a relationship starts when the couple gets to know one another, exchange gifts and generally keep a respectful distance with little-to-no intimacy. Historically, courting has been a male pursuing a female, but it’s 2019, thankfully anybody can court anybody these days. So, if you’re looking for a long-lasting relationship and want a slower pace than today's speedy dating culture, then courting might be for you.
Courting Can Eliminate Short Term Flings
One of the main courting rules is honesty. Being completely honest in the early stages of a relationship flies in the face of most modern dating advice. Cliches from movies and television portray ‘typical dating’ as a place where you never admit your true feelings and intentions, lest you be mocked or rejected. By being honest whilst flirting or starting a conversation with someone you genuinely like, whether online or in person, you can rule out mixed signals or different goals early.
Try this: “We’ve been talking for a while and I wanted to let you know that I’m looking for a long-lasting committed relationship. I like you and I think it’s fair to share your goals and plans early.”
Exclusivity is Key in Courting
When people start online dating it’s natural to be in contact with multiple people. It’s an integral part of the experience of online dating to talk to lots of other singles. It’s also normal to meet and date multiple different people, especially if you’re having a lot of first dates which can peter out quickly if there’s no spark. When you’re courting someone, it’s important to give that person your full attention, which can be hard if you’re constantly weighing your options. Try dating one person at a time, instead of juggling several people. This will give more importance to a first date and make it more special for both of you.
Try this: Meeting someone for the first time? Try working your preference for only seeing people exclusively into the conversation. You could also mention that you find messaging lots of people online disingenuous to the other person. Your date will appreciate the honesty. You’ll have also subtly let them know that they’re special and that they’re the only person your seeing!
Battle of the Sexes in Courting
As we mentioned earlier, the word courting relates to a more archaic type of dating, and with that comes less progressive views of male and female roles in relationships. Traditionally viewed as a masculine endeavour, courting, like society, has evolved. Women and men can be the courter and the courted respectively. However, depending on which you are, there are some gender roles that can be ignored. For example, paying for dinner is still a complex issue with lots of different opinions. So let’s take gender out of it. If you are courting someone then paying for their meal or drinks is the height of decorum and politeness. If they decline, then the offer is still taken in good faith. Sometimes it really is the thought that counts!
Try this: If you’re a man and you’re worried about how paying for dinner will appear, just explain your reasoning. “Jennifer, I had such a lovely time this evening, I’d really like to show my appreciation by paying for your meal.” No pressure, no stereotypes, just a gift that shows your affection- the essence of good courtship.
Going the Extra Mile
After a few dates, it’s easy to get comfortable. This is usually the point in dating where you’d be exchanging a few text messages a day and meeting up once a week for a casual drink. In the world of modern romance, nobody would be expecting anything more than this. However, the importance of courtship is going the extra mile. Surprise your partner, send flowers to their office if they’re having a bad day, surprise them with a book that they mentioned, or offer to cook them their favourite meal. All these little things will show your appreciation and affection to your partner and will show your level of commitment to the relationship.
Try this: Maybe your partner mentioned a friend they haven’t seen in a while? If so, buy two cinema tickets and suggest that they go together to reconnect. This is a lovely selfless act and will impress anybody being courted.
Friends, Family and Social Interactions in Courting
One of the major differences between courting and dating is how involved you get in your potential partner’s life. In courting, you want to make a good impression with your beloved’s family and friends. In modern dating, this isn’t something that happens until much later in a relationship and the hesitation around this is due to the commitment it shows. In courtship, you’ve already declared your intentions. By going to a distant nieces birthday party or accompanying your partner’s friends on a camping trip, you stand to get to know both your partner and their loved ones much better.
Try this: If you don’t have the opportunity to meet the friends and family easily, then stage an event where you can meet. A dinner party is a great way to make some effort, show off your hosting skills, and build relationships with partners social circle.
Intimacy and Courtship - What're the Rules?
How does intimacy work in courting? This is one of the biggest courtship questions. Because of courtships’ old-fashioned roots and religious overtones, intimacy can be viewed as a no-no. However, in the modern world, this isn’t achievable for most couples. Instead of staving off intimacy completely, instead, react to your partners physical and emotional cues. If they are giving off signals that they would like to become more intimate in your relationship, follow their lead if you’re also interested. Think of intimacy as a bonus, not the goal.
Try this: Every classic romantic movie has had the kiss in the doorway at the end of the date, something that’s romantic, iconic, and well within courtships boundaries. If your partner hints that they’d like to come in, then accept their signals if you want. Remember, if they’re happy, then you’re happy.
Interested in courtship but sceptical that it’ll work in the modern world? EliteSingles is a website for people looking for long-lasting, committed relationships. Our members are marriage-minded and intent on finding a compatible relationship that works for them. So, what are you waiting for?