Although it is somewhat of a necessary evil, dating can actually be a half-way decent experience for both the man and the woman if they are both on the same page about how it should be done. But, as many discover, that isn’t always the case. There really is no ‘official’ handbook for dating and there are numerous schools of thought on how it ought to be done, so the chances that both are on the same page at the same time are slim.

This blook has been an attempt to give men and women a method for dating that they can agree upon. It is certainly not the method for dating, but it is one that could make dating more of an honorable pursuit rather than an awkward, painful, and heartbreaking merry-go-round (even if the couple breaks up).

The the core ideas of this method have been these:

  • The method is the message. The man’s method of approach every time he initiates with a woman he is attracted to communicates something to her about her value (or lack-thereof) to him. Thus, the man’s approach should always communicate the highest value to the woman.
  • Men should be clear about their intentions. Men are afraid of rejection. Because of this fear, they are tempted to initiate a friendship with a woman to avoid initial rejection in hopes that a friendship will woo the woman into a relationship. Women, by and large, don’t appreciate the bait-and-switch.
  • The relationship needs definition – regularly. Relationships are not successful just because they matriculate. They need to be carefully maintained with the same thoughtfulness and intentionality it took to get it started. Without definition, the relationship quickly begins to unravel.
  • “True love” is only possible within marriage. Dating does not prepare people well for marriage because it focuses on the performance of the other person. If it is poor, then the relationship suffers. If it is good, then the relationship thrives. The problem is, both people in the relationship are looking for a love that is not based on performance. That kind of love is only possible when it is promised – regardless of performance.

Dating is certainly not the best way of initiating a relationship, but it’s the only one our culture really embraces right now, so it will have to do. Until something better becomes popular, men and women would be wise to adopt a method for dating – whether it is this one or another – so that they can develop meaningful relationships that don’t just flare up and fizzle out. Instead, they can nurture a relationship that will truly last “until death do us part.”

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Even though this entry represents the last post in the method itself, I will continue to post articles in the appendix where I will periodically address specific issues related to this dating method and questions posed in previous posts. If there is a specific topic or related issue that you would like more specifics about, please leave a comment below and I’ll add it to the list.

My commitments to the Forge will keep me fairly busy this year, so I will not promise as frequent posts as I have been able to do this summer. Nevertheless, I hope to post a new article at least once every 1-2 weeks. I will also resume blogging on my regular blog, www.matthewdlantz.com.

Thanks for reading along!