Dating and Courtship: On the Other Hand
A while back, we were in a group of homeschoolers having a spirited discussion over our blog post, It’s Just Coffee. Suddenly, Melanie noticed that the woman arguing most strenuously against it was wearing a ring on her left hand. Melanie thought, Oh, maybe she found a mate through a very regulated model of courtship. Maybe that’s why she’s so adamant. “Oh, you’re married then!”
The girl looked puzzled. Melanie pointed to her ring. “Oh no, I’m not married! That’s a purity ring.”
“Then you need to move it to the other hand!” Melanie said, “If a guy sees it, he’s going to think you are taken and never even try to get to know you.”
“But, I don’t want him to talk to me! I want him to talk to my father first!” the lovely young woman asserted.
“I don’t think you understand,” Melanie gently stated. “If he thinks you’re taken, he won’t talk to your father, either. In fact, he’s unlikely to approach your dad before he has gotten to know you well enough to know you are a good possibility for the future.”
What astounded us is that we had the exact same conversation twice more within a week or so. One young lady even confided that if a guy hit on her in Wal-Mart that she’d hold up the hand with the purity ring on it as if to say, “Taken!” and the young man would walk off.
We asked her, “If the forward guys think it’s an engagement ring or wedding band and leave you alone because of it, what makes you think nice Christian guys won’t?”
It also surprised us that in all three conversations, the father or mother listening in, once they understood the issue, immediately responded, “Move the ring to the other hand!”
Strangely, all three ladies were reluctant. One said, “But, I promised you!” Her mother responded, “It’s okay to wear it on the other hand, honestly!” It’s like the girls believed that if they moved it to the other hand, they weren’t pure any more. Nonsense!
Parents, we need to adjust our advice to the age of our children. Sometimes the advice we gave them at thirteen, like “Don’t think about marriage! Don’t ask yourself if those around you would be good mates,” doesn’t necessarily apply at 23. Both guys and girls in their twenties have told us they are struggling to feel free to pursue/be open to a mate when they’ve been told again and again not to, even though it is now time! We need to encourage them!
To our single female friends: Honorable guys look for things like rings because in our culture, a ring on your left ring finger says you are promised to someone else. And no, he won’t know it’s a purity ring. Not when you are old enough to be married.
It’s not unmaidenly to be clearly single! Or to be friendly. In fact, most young men we talk to as we speak around the country say that they look to see if a young woman seems interested in what they say or smiles when they see them. A girl that seems friendly is a good candidate for friendship. And most guys want to know a girl before they decide to pursue her. So, Don’t Shut the Door Too Soon. Definitely not at the first glance at your hand!
Why not wear the ring on the other hand?
Hal & Melanie
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