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Additionally, the many legal and social barriers surrounding divorce increased the pressure to ensure that a match was suitable.
Separation was often only granted on grounds of bigamy, impotence, or adultery.
Men in the relationship would make their arrangement visible to outsiders by gifting his date a letterman jacket or a class ring, and the girl expected to be called and taken out on dates a certain number of times each week.
Consequently, a new concern arose for parents: as young people grew more secure in their committed dating relationships, they became more likely to engage in premarital sexual behaviors. This movement ushered in another paradigm shift; youth rejected the prescribed dating model in favor of a more liberal approach to love and sexuality, and “hookup culture” was born, a shift that emphasizes physical pleasure rather than emotional intimacy.
The courting script was usually contained to “calling,” in which the man was invited into the woman’s parlor for conversations over tea and involved a large degree of supervision.
Reputation was also an essential form of social currency that required intimate guarding.
Despite increased emphasis on a single relationship, “going steady” was still a very social label.This consisted of men and women attempting to construct the appearance of desirability, a feat which was accomplished by different means based on gender: Males’ reputations depended on their ability to create an impression of wealth, while the reputation of females was based on the ability to secure the interest of popular men.A woman had to secure a large number of dates with attractive men; if she was unable to, or if she chose to exclusively date one man, her soci al “ratings” would suffer.With the advent of new technologies (cell phones, social media, Tinder, etc.) and the changing definitions of traditional dating and families, modern dating is a more fluid and self-interpreted concept, very different from the relational context of the past.It is important to note that historically many of these mainstream rituals were strictly confined to heterosexual dating.