Teenage dating 70s
I remember, now, an experience I had when I was in medical school. After a time, she asked if I would accompany her to the theater. To be forward that way meant either that she was desperate or that she had tremendous self-confidence. When I met her, I decided she was probably desperate.
I lived at the Hall of Residence and helped make ends meet by working at the switchboard, (Believe it or not, there was such a thing as a switchboard.) I tried to connect a woman who wanted to reach one of the medical students. It would not be gallant of me to describe her; but I had a good time anyway! By the way, the men who advertised, or answered advertisements, had their own concerns.
The kind of dances performed then required holding each other, which put those of us who were shy at a disadvantage.
Otherwise, a fellow and a girl would be “fixed up” on a blind date by a mutual friend.
In another time and place, matchmakers would have been called upon to make the necessary arrangements; but no such social institution existed here in this country.
There was a time when a proper young man and woman could not speak to each other unless they had been formally introduced. On the other hand, I understand from my patients that it is considered bad manners now for young people to date someone who has previously dated one of their friends.Both men and women often find it difficult to approach someone at a party, let alone announce to the world that they are eager to meet someone.In a larger context, this is a problem that impacts all dating situations: how to seem interested without seeming desperate.These precautions seemed less important after the first few times a woman responded to these published invitations to meet.It turned out the men they were introduced to this way were no more or less dangerous than men encountered for the first time in a bar, or even men whom they met through the recommendation of a friend. (A somewhat older, recently divorced, woman told me she was sitting with her date at a fancy restaurant when he took out his teeth and put them in a wine glass.) Being pro-active, as I usually am, I encouraged men and women, too, to try dating this way, although, certainly, only after taking reasonable precautions.
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Such a rule did not hold in my time, at least not among the people I knew. The only women any of us ever saw were women that were dating our friends.