Before I leave dating lessons learned from Dona, I’ll give a few dating rules: Three lighthearted rules from Dona and three heavy rules from me. Scoff if you want, but they worked toward our relationship.
Dona’s Dating Rule #1: Never Date a Guy Who Owns a Van
A van could mean…
If you can’t figure that out, it’s probably best not to date at all.
The corollary for men is: Keep your pants on and zipped.
I drove a Nova.
Drew’s Dating Rule #1: Only Date Someone You’d Marry
This rule has a double edge.
First: Dating is for marriage… eventually. If you are dating for some other reason… well, we know what it is and I refer you back to Dona’s #1 Dating Rule.
Sound prudish? America could use a little prudery.
Second: Character is key.
I’m not saying you have to decide marriage before you even go out. I mean, give the guy or gal a chance. But be smart. Why date someone you know doesn’t have the kind of character traits you’d want to marry?
Another thing: In selecting who to date, leave physical aspects a distant second.
It doesn’t matter whether a person looks like a model or not. It doesn’t matter if their skin is yellow, red, black, white, or polka dot. The physical is most times out of their control and can change easily. With age, it changes inevitably.
Character doesn’t change, at least not without divine help. Don’t deceive yourself that you can change them. Leave that to Jesus.
If you date shallow people, you’ll marry a shallow person. If you date a lush, you’ll marry a lush. If you date kind and upright people, you’ll marry the same.
This isn’t rocket science, people. It’s human nature. Sow only where you want to reap.
Dona’s Dating Rule #2: Never Date a Guy Who Has Fuzzy Dice Hanging from His Rearview Mirror
I mean, really, what do fuzzy dice communicate?
The guy’s a player. He wants action and isn’t afraid to broadcast it.
At least this was the message in the 80’s.
To Dona, dice were a symbol of someone trying to prove something. A man – or a lady – needs courage to be who they are without a big show.
The reverse is advisable, too. Don’t try to make your date to be someone they aren’t. Relationships are difficult enough without requiring acting ability.
Drew’s Dating Rule #2: Only Date Someone Heading in the Same Direction
I’m not talking about road directions. I’m talking about values.
My Dating Rule #1 is about who someone is at the moment. Dating Rule #2 is about who they’re becoming. No one stays the same. We either progress or decay in our values.
The two of you don’t have to like exactly the same things, though a few common interests are nice. But if your values differ, this is a problem.
What values am I talking about?
Whatever it is you value.
Is your deal to make as much money as possible? Then date the driven. Be warned: They’ll run out when the money does.
Do you strive for position and status? Watch Downton Abbey and date only those upward in society. Be warned: They may not want you since they’re crawling up the ladder themselves. Don’t be a rung.
Do you want a family life? Don’t date a person dead set against kids. This disagreement leads to heartache.
Do you prioritize charity? Date only one who prioritizes this as well.
Is your life dedicated to emulating that Man who rose from the dead? Then date only a person so dedicated.
If the two of you pull apart, you’ll be pulled into parts.
Conversely, if the two of you are working toward the same goal, you’ll come closer together.
Dona’s Dating Rule #3: Always Carry a Quarter for a Phone Call
Update this to: Carry a fully charged cell phone and never end up somewhere with no service.
An auxiliary is: Don’t date until you know how to drive. This goes for girls, too. If things are getting out of hand, I instruct my daughters to say, “You’ll be giving me your keys now. You can pick them up along with your car tomorrow morning from my father.”
But the other dating rules are trying to prevent these situations.
Drew’s Dating Rule #3: Work on Being the Best You Whether Single or Not
Let me tell you: You may not always be married. You may never get married.
But don’t be desperate.
Use your time, whether in a relationship or not, to work on being your best ‘you’. Be your own hero.
‘You’ are not completed by another. If you must have someone, then you’ll put unbearable expectations on your mate. And they’ll probably be the same. It will be a relationship of two leeches, sucking the life out of each other.
‘You’ would do better searching for the One who can complete you.
There they are: Dating rules. I wish you the happiness Dona and I had.