Want to help your child have a better dating life? Want to stack the deck so your kids are more likely to want to date godly young men and women? Want to make sure your kids know when the person they are dating is going to make a great Christian spouse? There are no guarantees, but there is one fun thing you and your spouse can do to give your kids a great start on dating, love and marriage.
What is it? From the time your kids can talk, each child should have regular “dates” with the opposite sex parent. Although obviously the dynamic is very different than a “real” date, make sure you do something you both enjoy. Use the time together to demonstrate how to be considerate and thoughtful on a date. As your children get older, start talking about the type of person who makes a great date, a great boyfriend or girlfriend and eventually a great spouse.
As your kids reach the teen years, begin discussions of setting physical boundaries in romantic relationships. Discuss the pros and cons of dating people you know you would never marry. Talk about your own dating experiences and what you learned from them. Share why you chose to marry your spouse instead of other people you may have dated. Talk about the difference between lust, infatuation and love.
Have fun with it. Let your child plan some of your “dates”. They don’t have to be expensive or fancy. Keep “dating” as long as you possibly can. Don’t worry if you have to start calling your “dates” outings instead. The point is to have fun together, create memories and get to know your child’s heart a little better. You are helping them fill their romantic relationship tool chest with the skills and knowledge they will need to successfully navigate the dating world. It is definitely worth the time and effort.