7 things Mormons do
that make dating harder than it needs to be!

 

Dating has become toxic. We can see the adverse effects in the growing number of single people who are not only unmarried, but they are not even dating. So I started to ask dozens of real YSA’s why they think dating is toxic, these are the 7 reasons that came to the top.

1st. Getting Physical And Spiritual Priorities Backwards.

 

If the majority of dating problems could be boiled down to one issue this is it. We’ve got our priorities backward. We place a higher importance on their physical looks than the spiritual stature. Don’t let anyone tell you that physical attraction is not part of the equation because it is, but only part of it. Far too often we sort people by who is most attractive then we try to find the most spiritual one of them. IE Tinder, Mutual, and other dating apps. Instead, we should seek for the most spiritual people and find one we are attracted to.

“Believe that your faith has everything to do with your romance, because it does. You separate dating from discipleship at your peril.”
~Elder Jeffery R. Holland.

“Believe that your faith has everything to do with your romance, because it does. You separate dating from discipleship at your peril.” ~Elder Jeffery R. Holland.

2nd. Taking The First Date Too Seriously.

 

To make a cooking show analogy, too often we treat dating like the finale of Hell’s Kitchen. One wrong move and you are not going to get a second date, it is extremely discouraging. Instead of Hell’s Kitchen, dating should be like Diners Drive-Ins and Dives. We should have a good time, get to know people and preferably have some good food.

“You can have a good time. Of course you can! We want you to have fun. We want you to enjoy life.” ~Gordon B. Hinckley

 

“You can have a good time. Of course you can! We want you to have fun. We want you to enjoy life." ~Gordon B. Hinckley

 

3rd. Blind Dates!

 

Blind dates get an awful rap in Mormon culture. But if missionary work has taught RM’s anything it is that referrals work! So why do blind dates suck? Mainly it is because how we approach blind dates. We set someone up thinking “she will like him” and it leaves the date lacking because he has no interest or Vice versa. Or we stake our relationship on the outcome of whether they liked each other.

Instead, of trying to “find the one” to set your friend up with, try to help them have a good time. Be like “Hey I know you, and I know this girl, I think the two of you would hit it off and have fun. You should ask her out.” Blind dates like that are tremendous fun and actually effective. Remember to relax and to give people a chance! And as Sister Holland told us.

“Don’t be afraid of blind dates!
Sister Paige Holland

 

"Don't be afraid of blind dates!" Sister Paige Holland

 

4th. We Want Someone Who Is Perfect.

 

Unrealistic expectations hurt everyone, as no one feels good enough. It is easy to fall into the trap of making composite expectations, it comes from our list mentality. Sister Holland at a Valentine’s Day devotional at UVU talked about unrealistic expectations. She told the Sisters that the Brothers are continually told to be realistic, but that girls were becoming extremely unrealistic. She then warned everyone that this habit is dangerous because it is unrealistic to expecting a 20-year-old to have the qualities and attributes that often take decades to develop.

Instead of seeking for someone who is perfect, seek for someone who is worthy. Ask yourself, do they love God? Do they keep their covenants? Are they honest? Often times if all three of these are “yes” you are on a good path.

“I suggest that you not ignore many possible candidates who are still developing these attributes, seeking the one who is perfected in them. You will likely not find that perfect person, and if you did, there would certainly be no interest in you. These attributes are best polished together as husband and wife.”
~Elder Richard G. Scott

"I suggest that you not ignore many possible candidates who are still developing these attributes, seeking the one who is perfected in them. You will likely not find that perfect person, and if you did, there would certainly be no interest in you. These attributes are best polished together as husband and wife." ~Elder Richard G. Scott

 

 

5th. Trying to read minds.

 

Seriously, stop trying to read minds. So often we read so much into the actions of others that if we stepped back and looked at ourselves we would look ridiculous! Maybe the reason he opened the door for you was that is how he was raised. Maybe he asked you on a date because he thinks you are beautiful and he wants to get to know you. And maybe she just always uses smiley faces at the end of her texts.

When we read more into actions than what is meant, we destroy any joy dating brings because we are always analyzing and trying to figure out what their motives are. Instead of analyzing their subtle moves or text messages, talk to them. It is far easier to read into a text message than an actual conversation. This also means if you like someone, just ask them on a date! No more cloak and dagger.

“Don’t text her! Use your own voice to introduce yourself to the righteous daughters of God who are all around you. To actually hear a human voice will shock her—perhaps into saying yes.”
~Elder M. Russell Ballard

"Don’t text her! Use your own voice to introduce yourself to the righteous daughters of God who are all around you. To actually hear a human voice will shock her—perhaps into saying yes." ~Elder M. Russell Ballard

 

 

 6th. Incorrect Understanding About The Millennium.

 

I love the Millennium, it is the promise that all things will be made right. If you are denied any blessing by the actions of others, God will give you an opportunity to have that blessing in the millennium. That is to say, if you try and can not find a spouse in this life God will not deny you that blessing because of the lack of options you had, and in the millennium you will be given that chance.

But it is not true that you can just hold out and reject good covenant keeping options who are not perfect because in the millennium you’ll get the perfect man/woman. The millennium is not for second chances, it is for denied blessings and fulfilling promises.

“The Lord has promised that in the eternities no blessing will be denied his sons and daughters who keep the commandments, are true to their covenants, and desire what is right.”
Elder Dallin H. Oaks

 

"The Lord has promised that in the eternities no blessing will be denied his sons and daughters who keep the commandments, are true to their covenants, and desire what is right." Elder Dallin H. Oaks

 

7th. Looking For Love At First Sight Or A Soulmate.

 

One of the most repeated counsels I’ve been given is. “When you meet her, you’ll just know and it will be magical.” Or “it will be love at first sight.” But the problem is that is not the rule but the exception. Most people don’t know at first, often it takes multiple dates before you can tell if there is something there.

With love at first sight also comes the myth of soulmates. The truth is marriage and dating take work. It is not some Disney Fairytale where it’s going to be easy. There is not only “one” person for you. The truth of the matter is simple, any two worth people who are willing to sacrifice and pay the price can make it work.

“‘Soul mates’ are fiction and an illusion; and while every young man and young woman will seek with all diligence and prayerfulness to find a mate with whom life can be most compatible and beautiful, yet it is certain that almost any good man and any good woman can have happiness and a successful marriage if both are willing to pay the price”
~President Spencer W. Kimball

“‘Soul mates’ are fiction and an illusion; and while every young man and young woman will seek with all diligence and prayerfulness to find a mate with whom life can be most compatible and beautiful, yet it is certain that almost any good man and any good woman can have happiness and a successful marriage if both are willing to pay the price” ~President Spencer W. Kimball

 

 

If you liked this article on dating, you will also like this one on dating from my YSA Bishop. 

Do you know someone that is single? Maybe you are, here is dating counsel from a YSA Bishop that every YSA needs to hear!

22 thoughts on “7 things Mormons do that make dating harder than it needs to be!

  1. My only caution is, while not believing in “soul mates,” be careful of using the President Kimball quote about “any good man and any good woman”. That is actually from a devotional all about divorce. It’s saying “you’ve made the commitment, keep working it out” not “Hey single people, go to church and just pick SOMEONE…it’ll work out!”

    1. Thank you sharing this! I think it’s also important to note that President Kimball said, “It is certain that *ALMOST* any good man and any good woman can have happiness and a successful marriage if both are willing to pay the price.”

  2. “Be like ‘Hey I know you, and I know this girl, I think the two of you would hit it off and have fun.'” No. No. NO — WRONG. Setting people up like this is EXACTLY what is wrong with blind dates. Just because two people are single and “great people” does NOT mean that is a valid reason to set them up. If a person wants to set them up because they both have similar interests and personalities, by all means: make that magic happen.

    1. I used to be of this school of thought, but I changed recently. My friend has been trying to set me up on blind dates but struggled to find a girl who he thought I would “like” or that we had common interests. I told him that for the first date I really just want to have a good time. Since then he was like “oh if you want to have a good time and get to know girls I can help!” He’s set me up on a blind date each week since then.

      I would much rather the first date be about having fun and getting to know them, rather than not getting as many because we are not similar. If that makes sense.

      I just think most people could use good dating experiences and some practice!

  3. Decent article, but I’m only commenting to say one thing: you REALLY need to change your color scheme here. The article is light gray text on a white background — very little contrast. And the commends are even worse (light grab text on a slightly lighter gray background).

    Please consider changing this.

    1. Thanks for your feedback, you are the first person that has mentioned that. I’ll look into it!

      1. Maybe it is just exceptionally bad on my setup. I’m using Chrome — and there appears to be a font issue too actually. So, check it out — but then maybe it is me. Thanks.

  4. I think people should just mine their own business and the singles work it out for themselves!! There’s a lot of erroneous information out trying to explain why singles aren’t married. One problem singles have is Local Mormon Leaders wanting to really listen to them!!

    1. I can see where you’re coming from. I’ve been rather lucky to have some really good YSA Bishops who listen and give advice and counsel. I think we can’t lay all the blame on any one person, or any one reason. There is a multiplicity of problems with dating.

  5. So YSA means young single adults then I guess singles adults over 31 don’t even exist.?

    1. They do, I am just a YSA so I’m writing to my peers. The same principles applies for MSA’s (Mid Single Adults).

  6. I am struggling to read the replies. The letters should be bolder, not so faintly blending in the background. It gave me a headache til I look away then try again. Another person did comment on this issue. Not everyone can read through blended colors. Hope you can fix this issue. Thanks for sharing though.

  7. This article would have been good had it been written by someone who could use English properly.

      1. Since you made one, and I don’t know you well enough to be able to comment intelligently on your judgment, I shall reason from the premise that it was.

  8. Being single adult is worse than YSA. Try living in Iowa – I am part of the biggest stake in IA and there are no Single adult males that make themselves known to anyone. Most are poor, lived alone so long they don’t know how to date or care about dating anyone or they are on welfare or sit at home all the time. Sorry I am not going to seek them out not ask them for a date because you don’t even know who they are. In other words single adult stinks! Or they all think they are so old – the list goes on and on. Therefore I have given thought to seeking out someone who is not in the church but might be interested in the church. That is even a big chore – you go to the nearby other state functions and dating couples show up and have a gay old time and than leave than the SA that are single with no mate get up and dance. What the heck is that? Sorry this whole SA thing is not what it is cracked up to be and in our Wards nobody cares. Yes I have made it known that I would like to be the Ward single adult rep. Who cares? No one.

  9. I believe every thing that this person has written about. I have seen it not just with my own brothers but also with the women of the church. Their looking soooo hard for mister perfect but they are also looking at a guys’ paycheck more than they are the person. It doesn’t matter how much they make its how they make you feel. I have had boyfriends that weren’t members of the church as well as girlfriends, and the funny thing is everyone is looking for this gorgeous person who makes lots of money, has a fabulous job and home and has this wonderful personality and is a righteous person that they can go to the temple with. The boyfriends that I have had may not have been the best looking men on the planet. My girlfriends would ask me what I saw in them. I would tell them that looks don’t last forever, that great job won’t be around forever or the house or what ever that this guy is suppose to have. They would come up with all these arguments of why I should ditch them. I’m married now. My husband isn’t a member of the church, he’s not the greatest looking guy on the planet, he actually grew into his looks. He doesn’t have the greatest paying jobs or anything like that. I prayed to Heavenly Father if he was the right one for me and got the answer that he is. Quit looking for perfection in every one and everything in this life. When you do you are going to be disappointed time and again. I know of a woman in my stake, whose fiance broke things off with her for whatever reason and prayed if she would ever find someone. She got the answer that her eternal companion isn’t going to be in this life. She probably gave herself that answer which we can. She has sooo many guys that would like to get to know her but are afraid of being turned down and rightly so. We are not meant to be alone in this life. Some times we need to look not with the “natural man’s eyes” but with our “spiritual eyes” instead.

  10. I came upon this site and thought it applied to ALL SINGLE ADULTS. I am a Senior Single adult. My Loved one returned to heavenly Father almost 2 years ago. Just the past couple of months I have thought about dating yet I can,t find any Single Adults meetings, dances ,any contacts in the Plant City Florida area. I moved here from the Provo Utah area where there are many activities for my age group. If any one has information on someone or sites I could contact I would Sincerely appreciate hearing from you .Thank you , God Bless

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