Dating Manners for Teens

Do teenagers still date today or just hang out? Read what we were taught in school about teens and dating. In the 1950's and early 1960's it was a lot different.

If a young person wants to have a good time and be able rate a second date, you should practice Dating Manners.

Making a Date

There are 2 rules of etiquette for making a date. Let's use the story below for an example.

Mark had decided to ask Sally to go with him to the ninth-grade dance which was to be held in the school gymnasium. When he telephoned her several days in advance, he was careful not to embarrass her by asking if she had any plans for that particular evening. Instead, he said, " Sally, will you go with me to the dance on Saturday night?" "My friend Bill is taking Kathy and we'll be going in his car."

Sally, in turn, didn't embarrass Mark by hesitating while she figured out whether or not she wanted to go with him, or whether she had anything to wear, but she answered right away, "Thank you Mark, I'd love to go with you."

Mark thus followed two of the rules of dating etiquette in inviting Sally to the dance: First, he called her far enough in advance; second, he told her what the plans were for the date. Since Sally had accepted the invitation, she did not change her mind the next day when Sam asked her to go to the dance. She simply thanked Sam and told him that Mark had already invited her to go. If a girl wishes to refuse a date, she should still be courteous and give some reason for the refusal. She may say she has other plans for the evening.

Mark and Sally agreed that he would pick her up at her home at seven-thirty. This would give him time enough to meet Sally's parents, chat with them a few minutes, discuss with them when they would like her to be home, and get to the dance on time.

Your date may be as glad to be invited into your home as your parents are to meet him.

Double Dating makes an occasion more enjoyable because it gives each couple an opportunity to share their relationship with one another. You may consider double dating for a first date.

Being a Good Date

-Do you insist on having your own way when other members of the group want to do something else?
-Do you lose your temper when you can't have your own way?
-Are you too critical of other people in the group?
-Do you continually find fault with the arrangements for the parties the group plans?
-Do you criticize when things go wrong?
-Does saying, " I told you so" give you satisfaction?

If you are a good date you can answer "No" to all of these questions. If you cannot, your "friendship quotient" is probably below average and needs some improvement.

Being a "good date," however, does not mean that you have to disregard your own code of behavior, because the decision of another person or the crowd is not always the best one. You should be able to decide when to go along and when to use your own judgement as to your actions.

Do's and Don'ts of Dating

A boy is expected to arrive at the girl's home at the time set for the date. If he comes in an automobile, he should not blow the horn as a signal for her to join him. Instead, he should call for her at her door. If he has not met her parents, she may invite him in and introduce him to them. She should present the boy to her parents, saying, "Mother and Dad, this is ______." Together they should decide when to return after the date. The wishes of the parents in this manner must be respected.

It is not proper for a girl to invite a boy into the house for any length of time if a parent or another responsible adult is not at home. When young people entertain one or more friends, an adult should always be somewhere in the house.

If it is necessary, as it may be, for a girl to break a date, she should be honest and tell the boy the reason, saying that she is sorry. Of course breaking dates should not become a habit.

A boy and girl can have fun on a blind date if the arrangements have been made by friends who know both of them. Blind dates should be double dates.

If you are a girl:
Do keep a date after you have made it.
Do be ready when the boy arrives at your home.
Do introduce the boy to your parents
Don't break a date without a good reason, and without giving a definite explanation.
Don't make a practice of meeting a boy away from home for a date.
Don't stay out later than you had agreed with your parents you would, unless you phone them.

If you are a boy:
Do make the date in advance.
Do make sure that you have money enough to carry out the plans for the date.
Do find out what time the girl must be home, and make sure the agreement is kept.
Don't be late in arriving at the girl's home
Don't fail to show courtesy to the girl by helping her on with her coat, etc.

Dating Manners

1. If the boy has the use of a car for the date, he escorts the girl to the car and opens the door for her before getting in. In leaving the car, he gets out while she is still seated and opens the door on her side, helping her out. In some communities today where traffic is heavy, the girl might ask the boy to get in the car first, from the curb side. In heavy traffic also, the boy should reach over in front of the girl to open her door, and then slide across the seat to get out after she does.

2. If the boy and girl are using a bus, the boy helps the girl on, and follows her to a seat. When leaving, unless the bus is crowded, the boy gets off first so that he can assist her in getting off.

3. When walking together on the street, the boy's place is nearest to the curb. When he is with two girls, it is correct for him either to walk between them or on the side nearest the curb. A girl with two boys walks between them.

4. When walking together, a girl does not take a boy's arm unless she needs assistance. He should not take her arm either under ordinary conditions, but sometimes he places his hand on her elbow when crossing the street in traffic. Linking arms or walking with arms around each other is not considered in good taste.

5. When finding seats in a movie, the girl follows the usher, to whom the boy has indicated where they would like to sit. If there is no usher, the boy should lead the way, or the two may go down the aisle together. Then the boy should step aside and allow the girl to enter the row first. In leaving the theater, the girl goes up the aisle ahead of the boy.

6. Refrain from any sort of disturbance in the theater. This includes eating noisily, talking loudly, or displaying affection.

7. Girls should avoid applying makeup, fussing with their hair, or combing it frequently in public.

8. When entering a restaurant, the girl follows the waiter to the table selected. The waiter seats her. If there is no waiter, either the girl may lead the way and choose a table, or the boy may select the table and precede the girl to it. He then pulls out her chair, seats her, and helps her to remove her wraps.

9. When ordering food in a restaurant, the girl makes her selection from the menu. After asking her what she has chosen, the boy may give both orders to the waiter. The girl may give her order directly to the waiter, provided he asks her for it. Also see Table Manners

10. When a boy takes a girl home after a date, he should escort her to the door and help her to open it. If her parents are there and it is not too late, she may invite him to come inside for awhile and possibly to have something to eat. When he leaves, she accompanies him as far as the door and tells him that she has enjoyed the evening.

What to Wear on a Date

Because it is good manners to arrive on time for a party, a girl should be sure to be ready when the boy calls for her. This means that she will be dressed appropriately for the occasion, have her hair combed, and have her make-up on.

For an informal dance or school party she could wear an afternoon dress or a short evening dress which is not extreme in style. For a date to go to the movies, for example, she should dress up a little, but not too much. Neatness, cleanliness, and simplicity are always in good taste. Girls too appreciate having boys appropriately dressed. For any date, soiled rumpled clothing shows carelessness in a boy's grooming. Slacks, sport shirts, and sweaters or jackets are good selections for informal parties or movie dates. A dark suit, white shirt, and a tie are right for such occasions as church, dining out, or formal parties.

Clothes for dates

Clothes for dates will vary according to the activity planned. For getting together after school, of course, school clothes are alright. Boys and girls who are going to a movie at night or to an informal party will probably dress up a little. A more formal party or dance gives a girl a chance to wear her best dress, and a boy, his best suit. Also consider the season and the part of the country you are living in. For example teens living in the northern United States wear different clothes than teenagers living in the southern United States.

Conspicuous dress should be avoided in public by both boys and girls. Clothing that is not appropriate or suited to the wearer or occasion is in poor taste. When a girl wears a dress that is fitted too snugly or cut too low, she may embarrass the boy she is dating.

Teen Tips

Teen Allowances and Jobs
Teenagers and Money
Teen Party Tips
Teens and Dating Tips
Making and Keeping Friends
Teenagers and Credit Cards