The Mormon religion is a form of Christianity that began in Palmyra, NY in the 1800s by Joseph Smith. He later moved to Ohio, and eventually the religion made its way across the country. Followers can be found all throughout the United States. They follow certain traditions within the church regarding all aspects of life. Families tend to enforce certain dating customs within their faith.
Age for Mormon Dating
Mormon children are typically not permitted to date until the age of sixteen. Even then, it is expected that dating will only be casual for a few more years. Young women are expected to finish high school. Young men should finish school, as well as a mission trip prior to becoming involved in a serious dating relationship that could lead to marriage. Dating is prohibited during the two-year mission, which usually occurs at the age of nineteen. Allowances are made, however, for men and women to mingle and socialize, as it is very important for them to find a spouse.
Mormon Dating in Groups
Even when Mormon teens are considered old enough to start dating, they are encouraged to get together in groups instead of one-on-one dates. This allows boys and girls to get to know a variety of people instead of prematurely focusing on one person.
Modesty in Mormon Dating
Mormons are expected to be modest and pure in their thoughts and actions. They should not go to movies that are gratuitous or read books that provoke impure thoughts. They should dress modestly for the situation, trying to not draw much inappropriate attention to their bodies.
Chastity in Mormon Dating
Mormons place a high value on chastity in their dating relationships. They believe people are required to be chaste in their relationships. Sex after marriage is beautiful and sacred. It is a physical representation of the unity of one flesh that occurs during the marriage ceremony. Even heavy kissing and touching or petting is prohibited during dating, as these acts can often lead to intercourse. Hugging and hand-holding are okay.
Dating Outside the Mormon Faith
The Mormon church encourages its members to marry within the Church. However, people are not prohibited from dating members of other religions. Problems can occur, though, if the relationship becomes serious, as family traditions in the Mormon church are very important. It's difficult for a non-Mormon to fully understand them. Others within the church may look down upon the mixed couple, but such behavior is considered to be unlike Christian ideals.
Myths of Polygamy
Polygamy did occur back in the 1800s. At that time, some men were actually married to more than one woman, so their sexual relations were appropriate. Now, however, the practice has been abandoned. When a Mormon man chooses one woman to date to be his wife, she will be his one and only.