"For the word of the Lord is truth, and whatsoever is truth is light..."

Why Double Date?

by Jenny Walsh

We have been counseled many times to refrain from dating until we are at least sixteen years old. Even then, we have been counseled to double date until we are ready for a serious relationship and marriage (See the pamphlet "For the Strength of Youth"). Some may believe that waiting until sixteen provides enough maturity to handle single dating and that double dating is unnecessary and burdensome. However, double dating provides a wonderful opportunity to develop friendships with both young men and young women, lots of fun, and moral safety. A better question might be, Why Single Date?

I remember at BYU playing racquetball on a double date. We walked to the courts together and joked all along the way. When we changed into our gym clothes, I had someone to dress with and to keep me from getting lost in the unfamiliar building. The other girl and I jokingly complained about the gym-issued clothing together. Neither one of us had played racquetball before, but the guys were terrific. I felt reassured that I wasn't the only bad player there. We switched teams in between games--guys against girls, couple against couple and mixed couples against each other. Later, we all climbed a tree in the Quad and told jokes, stories, and riddles to each other. Just outside the tree, people were playing night games and we got hit by squirt guns. We walked back to the dorms and talked about Star Trek. It was great fun, no one felt awkward about saying good night, and we had no regrets. The people on that date became my friends and we continued to have enjoyable times together until the guys went on their missions and I got married.

When I was in high school, my friend Ruth and I went on a double date with a guy I really liked and his friend. We went to Little Caesar's Pizza and my date won free pizza for us by playing the Simon-like game in the lobby. Then we went to Pizza Hut, ordered drinks, and ate Little Caesar's Pizza and vegetables brought from home. The waiters kept looking at us. It was so crazy, which made it fun. We went to a pie place and the youth dance afterwards. My friend and I still talk about that date.

On the other hand, I know several young women who got pregnant before marriage. None of them wanted to get pregnant and all of them were basically good girls. If they had not been in single date situations with the young men, they would have never allowed themselves to get so familiar with them. Regrets, from lost virtue in all of its degrees, are less common when we remain safely with the group.

All of the date ideas in this section will work well with double, or even triple and quadruple dates. The dating years have potential to be so fun and exciting. I hope that they can be that way for you.

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