Jordin from "Paths of Peace" is making a series of posts explaining her view on the dangers of dating games and why courtship is preferable to dating. Take a peek at her excellent post here. I've just read it and it was... well, the very thing I needed to hear when I was 16 and no one ever told me.
We need to help young people understand that:
1) Dating leads to divorce.
Jordin mentions in her post that dating is like trying one outfit after another, and throwing it out when it doesn't fit. I brought up the same point in a post I made this month. Dating doesn't prepare us for marriage. Dating only prepares us for more dating, heartbreak, emotional and physical dangers.
2) If you want to be safe, avoid situations that lead you to temptation.
I would like to stand up and applaud Jordin for saying "If you want the best for your children, it's best they not be alone". When I bring up this point while talking to other young people, I get - how should I describe this? - sackfuls of rotten eggs: "What?! Are we animals? Can't we trust ourselves to control our impulses?!"
... well you know what, when you're on a diet, you don't keep a box of chocolates next to you to "test the strength of your self-control". I know it's a very crude comparison, but yes, we are humans and we are weak. Avoiding temptation is part of resisting it.
Yes, it may sound controversial, but I believe that ideally, courtship should proceed without touching at all (and that includes holding hands), and without being alone together. Even if young people are strong enough to resist temptation, physical contact clouds a person's mind and can only interfere with the main goal of courtship: finding out if the young man and woman are suitable for each other as potential spouses.
Thank you for bringing this up, Jordin. I will stay tuned for more eye-opening posts on this topic.