The girls role in dating is just as critical as the man’s. For too long our society tried to convince us that men and women were pretty much identical other than just some physical equipment. I think most of the world now realizes that this is a ridiculous notion; the differences between men and women are profound, and therefore our roles in dating are different as well. The girls role in dating is critical to the outcome of the relationship.
Do realize that (I’m assuming you are the girl reading this; but guys should read this too) you have tremendous power to focus and influence a man for good. But you need to be deliberate in the way you behave and seek to understand how a man’s mind and heart works. You need to understand yourself as well.
With that in mind, here is the gal’s part:
1. Be Modest.
This goes against what our culture is promoting. I highly recommend you read the book How to Choose a Husband: And Make Peace With Marriage by Susan Venker (Available in the Love U Bookstore). She makes a strong case from a woman’s perspective about how much women have given away by dressing and acting like, well, sluts. While many feminists would argue that dressing like a prostitute (i.e. short skirts, plunging necklines, and tight clothing) and sleeping with just about anyone is empowering; in reality it has been one of the factors in producing a society full of boys in men’s bodies who use women and discard them on a regular basis.
It used to be that a young man had to mature, get a job, and win the heart and hand (i.e. put a ring on her finger) in order to enjoy the pleasures of her body. With the clothing standards of today and the lack of moral standards, just about any guy can see just about anything he wants to see and probably find someone willing to do the nasty with him regardless of his immaturity.
As Mrs. Venker relates it, “…modesty is what true empowerment is about. Being restrained, or cautious, with one’s sexuality is what it means to be truly empowered. Any woman can strut her stuff and sleep with the hottest guy in town – that’s no big feat – but the woman who choses not to stands out…There’s nothing more attractive than a savvy woman who doesn’t become jello in the presence of a hottie. If she likes a guy, she doesn’t let him know it. Instead, she holds her cards close to her chest until she determines his intentions and character.” (How to Choose a Husband, Venker)
So here’s the lowdown. When it comes to the girls role in dating – be modest. Don’t wear mini-skirts. Don’t show cleavage. Don’t wear skinny jeans or any clothing that is skintight. At least while you are dating do not wear these things. Once you are married, though, you might want to put these on to meet your husband when he comes home from work – you may be surprised at his response!
Your body is a powerful aphrodisiac for a man; unfortunately in our society it is hard to go outdoors at all without seeing someone dressed provocatively. Save the provocation for marriage. What you have is designed to draw your husband to you in a permanent relationship. It is not for indiscrete daily use or intended just for fun. So a key part of the girls role in dating is to keep purity as a top priority.
2. Understand Your Worth.
This goes along with the first point. As a woman, you are the nourisher of human life. While the man is the protector, you are the only one who can bring life into the world. It is a unique and precious capability. As was mentioned in the unit on safe sex, this capability to have children is very easily compromised through what is called casual sex. If your date starts threatening to dump you unless you give him sex; show him the door. Unless you have a ring on your finger and the preacher has already pronounced you man and wife – the answer to “can we have sex” is always a firm “no.” Protect this precious life-giving gift that is you.
Further, you as a wife will be the primary nourisher of your husband’s emotional life. Men live (usually) in something of a cutthroat world. We expect men to run toward danger and put their lives on the line. They go out (if they are real men) and do whatever is necessary to earn a living and provide for their families. This requires a certain hardness of emotion. We do not want men who are firefighters, soldiers, pilots, doctors, or other dangerous/critical professions taking counsel of their fears before every task! But living in this courageous manner continually is not good; so our Maker designed women to be the means through which men reconnect with gentleness and compassion.
The comforts that a woman offers through her body and emotional sensitivity in the process of physical intimacy play a huge part in a man’s ability to step down from the stress of his daily routine and become a relational human being again. A good and responsive wife (like the one I have adored and been married to for nearly 30 years now) is a priceless and worthy to die for component of a man’s life.
As part of the girls role in dating, act worthy of what you are. You bring to a man a world of joy and comfort, do not sell yourself for anything less than his total commitment.
3. Be Feminine.
Several years ago I was flying (as a military pilot) with a female copilot. She was an attractive lady, but as I looked across the cockpit, I noticed she had a big plug of tobacco in her bottom lip. She was spitting into a cup on a regular basis. At some point she became annoyed at my glances her way and queried: “Why are you looking at me?”
I said, “That’s disgusting.”
She said, “Well guys do it.”
To which I replied, “I’ve never kissed a guy, nor do I have a desire to.”
I can tell you, the vast majority of men feel the same way. We have no desire to be with a lady who acts like, looks like, talks like, dresses like, or chews tobacco like a guy! In spite of what the politically correct crowd would try to claim, the average true American man actually prefers his woman to be feminine. We are not attracted to men, nor manly women.
Susan Venker puts it this way: “If you want to find love, you need to stop being in charge all the time and learn how to embrace your femininity. If you do, you’ll find a different kind of power awaits you.”
Dress nicely. Talk with a gentle and refined voice. Use proper language. Listen intently when your date talks. Wait for him to open the door for you. Allow him to pick up the check at the restaurant. Speak respectfully. Expect him and allow him to be your hero.
The power of a truly feminine woman is amazing.
4. Have High Standards, Voice Them, and Keep Them.
Because of the way men’s brains are wired, they tend to be more impulsive, visually stimulated, and thrill seeking. Thus in the dating relationship, there needs to be a stabilizing influence to keep things from getting out of hand in the sexual arena. Throughout history, the woman has played that role.
Women have more serotonin in their brain than men; this is important because it helps women resist impulses better. As was mentioned in earlier units in this study, women generally suffer more in sex outside of marriage; whether that be in the context of dating or cohabiting. In marriage, the act of having children, caring for them, and even maintaining a household results in women needing protection – the kind of protection a man can provide. The healthiest, safest, and most permanent caring arrangement for a woman is to marry a virgin husband as a virgin, and marry only once.
So in the dating game, it is the lady who needs to politely state that you are saving yourself for the man who proves himself worthy and honorable of the blessings you will bestow upon him. In other words, state up front that you will only participate in sex after marriage; and understand that sex begins with hands, lips, and even bodies just coming together.
You have to decide where to draw the line, but if I found myself “on the market” again knowing what I know – here is what I would do. I would state to my date that we can hold hands and give each other “side hugs.” I would save frontal hugs and kisses on the lips for the marriage ceremony and beyond. There have just been too many times in my married life where a simple kiss or hug led to much more momentous and wonderful things; things that were not intended by either of us!
Do not accept dating opportunities which result in time alone, unaccountable to others. Watch your date carefully and inquire about any lack of care and true love you may observe. If you see warning signs, let him know that he needs to work on those character issues. Protect yourself so that you can experience the blessings your Creator intended – and be a blessing to the man you marry.
5. Get Connected Spiritually.
We are made to be relational – and women seem to crave this even more than men. Far too often a woman will choose poorly when dating because she is so desperately insecure about who she is. She believes, thanks to the influence of romantic movies and books, that she is incomplete without someone to love her. While we are designed to live in relationship with others, the ultimate “other” is none other than God himself. You are a daughter of the King of the universe and are dearly loved. If you do not know Jesus as your Savior, you need to get to know Him.
Then you will be able to exercise self-control in your relationships and have His guidance in finding that special person with whom to share your love and life.
6. Get Smart On Relationships.
That’s really the whole purpose of this website. The quality of your life will largely be determined by the quality and love experienced in your relationships – yet we seem to just think that our primary relationship is just going to work out somehow. We prepare for careers, driving a car, managing our money and so forth; but when it comes to understanding the opposite sex – how much study and effort do we put into that?
Put some serious effort into understanding yourself and the opposite sex. Study the principles of successful marriages. Here are a couple of books I highly recommend to get you started in the right direction on properly fulfilling the girls role in dating. (which are available in the Love U Bookstore and possibly at a local community or church library):
How To Choose a Husband: And Make Peace With Marriage by Susan Venker.
Sacred Influence: How God Uses Wives to Shape the Souls of Their Husbands by Gary Thomas.
Boundaries in Dating: How Healthy Choices Grow Healthy Relationships by Henry Cloud.