Friday, April 15, 2016

A Catholic Dating Scene

What is the definition of dating??

Everyone is so worked up about what the definition of marriage is (and we should be), but let's go even further than that. What is the definition of dating? What is the absolute, sure sign that you are currently in a relationship?

I have been talking to a gentleman for a while now. (There! I said it!) We have only been talking because I met him online and he currently lives far enough away that we have to strategically plan when and where we are going to meet.

I really like this guy. He's sweet and seems to be a hard-working, honest man of faith. That's all I ever looked for in a man. I really can't wait to meet him face to face, because I really hate phone conversations. I am a visual person. It's difficult for me to talk to him and not be able to picture him in my mind.

So far, I have only told a handful of friends and they have all been really excited, wanting to know more and see pictures.

I was dreading telling my sister. Because I knew, no matter how I phrased this, something negative was going to come out of her mouth. I love my sister and I know that deep down, she says this out of a deep seated fear she has of the fact that I have never before had a serious relationship in my life, so what could I possibly know??

I finally told her today. I wasn't really thinking when I said it. I just said it.

"I'm dating someone."

At first, she acted like it was no big deal. My head was a little busy trying to wrap around the fact that I just said for the first time that I was dating this guy I had never physically met.

But, soon enough, the negativity came. Unlike all the people I had told before, she started saying how I shouldn't call it dating because that was just going to set me up to be hurt.

I told her that we were two people who were really interested in learning more about each other for the specific purpose of finding out if God's will was marriage. That, in my be-it-so-humble opinion, is dating.

Is God calling us to marriage? I don't know.

Are we not destined to be together forever? I don't know.

All I know for a fact is that I really want to find out. 

Why wouldn't that be called dating?

Questions are constantly swirling in my head... am I taking this too seriously? Does he even consider this dating? What would he say when he heard what I said?

I do have a tendency to take things either too seriously or not serious enough. With me, there is no middle ground. But I digress...

What is the definition of dating?

In our current hook-up culture, we are constantly barraged with the idea that dating someone is no big deal. I refuse to believe that. I believe that dating is the path which God shows us our true calling. There have been people who have heard the call to religious life through dating and there have been people who have heard the call to married and single life through dating. So I believe there has to be something more to it. It must be a big deal!

Maybe, if we look further than just trying to define marriage... maybe if we looked into the definitions of dating, relationship, or even boyfriend or girlfriend, we shall find some of the answers we are looking for. Let's go all the way back to the beginning and decide, what it is we want from our dating lives and what they should look like. 

You never know how God is going to use this period in our lives.

God bless.

~ Joan Crookston

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