How Is Dating Different Than It Was 30 Years Ago?

Imagine a world when two individuals were forced to meet in person and correspond through letters to express interest in one another. In this same world, women dress much more modestly, and men are full of chivalry.

During these years, people often met up at parties or social gatherings and were not permitted to speak to one another unless formally introduced, an idea that might sound absurd in this century. Women and men could often date friends of their friends without anyone being excessively jealous, a rule that has been reversed in modern times.

With the coming of the 21st century has come great changes in social expectations and values. There are numerous factors that have contributed to this new form of dating including social media platforms, dating websites, co-ed universities and schools, later marriage, and LBGT+Q.

Innovations in Technology

Before individuals had access to the technology of today, they were forced to correspond through letters, telegrams, and in-person. They did not have the convenience of texting one another using smartphones, and thus those styles of communication often forged closer bonds between the two people.

In modern times, individuals may use social media platforms of dating websites to find a significant other. Without access to these new forms of technology, people often met one another through family, friends, and even at a social gathering. It was common for two families to set their children up on dates.

Because we have access to the internet and phones at our fingertips, we often take advantage of our ability to call and text. Some couples do this by texting endlessly throughout the day, something that could not be done in previous times. Sending letters or telegrams was often difficult, as letters required good penmanship and often covered more important matters such as confessing your feelings and not a simple “wyd today.”

Co-ed Schools

Gender-specific school institutions were very popular back then, and as such, it was difficult for individuals to date while in school. For this reason, people often have limited contact with the opposite gender. Friends would allow their friends to date people they have already dated, an idea that most definitely would not work in modern times.

With the rise of co-ed schools and several events such as dances, prom, and parties, people have more than one chance to date during school. Schools often strive for an equal ratio of males to females, and while it is not for this reason, it does give everyone an equal opportunity.

Later Marriage

The styles of communication in previous times, such as letters, meeting in-person, and sending telegrams often made interactions between two people more personal, and consequently formed stronger bonds. As such, people often got married as young as their early twenties.

Of course, this can also be attributed to the now present norm of attending college after graduating from high school. This process takes approximately 4 years after high school and maybe a year or two more for a person to become financially stable. In modern times, we often choose to become financially secure before deciding on marriage.

Individuals are often engaged for many years prior to marriage and they only get married upon reaching their late twenties or early thirties.

In contrast, arranged marriages were quite common 30 years ago as people believed that women were housewives and had no other hobbies other than cooking or sewing. This has changed with the movement for female rights and the rise in feminism, which now allows women to attend university along with men, and even hold positions men would usually have.


One obvious change over the years has been the LGBT+Q movement as countless of individuals every day are identifying as sexualities other than heterosexual. In 2003, in the court case, Lawrence v Texas, being LGBT+Q became legalized nationwide. This was only a few years ago, meaning that identifying as anything other than heterosexual was looked down upon greatly prior to year 2003.

No doubt, attending a co-ed school prior to that year would have resulted in individuals questioning their sexualities, but being that LGBT+Q was not normalized at that time, people could not admit it nor express themselves freely.

The legalization of such sexualities has come with a surge in same-sex couples, transgenders, and more. Because this is now normalized, it is now important to identify one’s pronouns and sexual orientation prior to dating.

Dating has changed greatly as more people are now looking for short-term relationships and only being serious later in their lives. People have become more career-oriented and accepting of others, a positive change that is sure to develop as the years go by.

How To Find The Love Of Your Life

Many of those of us walking through life want to do so with the love of our lives. Whether we refer to them as our special someone or our soul mate, we want to crave their attention and picture the rest of our lives with this other human. While love is not necessarily a fairy tale, it is always possible to find someone who you can walk through the trials of life with and who will help you to make positive memories. However, you will need to set the foundation so that you are able to attract this type of person into your life. This may require you to switch up your mindset, evaluate your values, and make sacrifices.

Stop Idealizing The Perfect Person

Movies and television shows often depict cute characters that fall in love and nothing bad every happens to them. They don’t fight. They don’t have a disagreement. They are fairy-tale couples. Unfortunately, that is not how real life works. But, this portrayal of these characters does affect our real life judgement. Idealizing the perfect person for you in your head can be both motivating and damaging all at once. It is important to have expectations and standards, but keep in mind that some things can become unrealistic. Every single person you meet will have multiple flaws. You may meet someone who you feel is perfect in every sense of the word, but then they are met with trials and tribulations that test them and they may react poorly. You may flee when they do not match up to your idealistic expectations. But, in reality, there is nobody who is going to be perfect. Instead, focus on communication and working on things that you know you are doing that negatively affect the relationship. Looking into your own flaws can help you to become a more empathetic person and help you to make the relationship stronger.

For example, some people specifically want a redhead to date. You shouldn’t be dead set on something so particular like dating a redhead. But if you are, checkout some of the best redhead dating websites to find what you are looking for.

Slow Down

Often, when we meet someone new for the first time we can become antsy to see them again. We may push certain milestones, such as the first kiss or moving in, because we feel that that is what we are supposed to do. Relationships are not a race, so don’t treat them like one. Rushing things and manipulating partners to feel a certain way will not build a healthy foundation for a long lasting relationship. It will end up doing more harm than good and could lead to you being unhappy in your relationship. Instead, try not to force milestones and understand that each relationship you develop will be unique. Some feelings may take longer to develop than others.

Be Genuine

It is important when you are looking to find real love that you present the most honest version of yourself. Sometimes, individuals may change their behavior in order to please those around them. They may do certain things or say certain things only because they know that is what the other person will like. Instead, go into situations putting an emphasis on your authentic self. You do not want to be pretending for your whole life. This may require you to really sit with yourself and get to know what you like, as well as how you are. For instance, what do you like to do for fun? For some people, living authentically can take practice.

Know Your Boundaries

It is important to know your worth and to know your boundaries. Setting healthy boundaries will help you to keep healthy relationships. Everyone has expectations and standards when it comes to relationships. You should uphold these to help ensure that your partner values and respects you. While finding a special someone will be a nice addition to your life, you do not need anyone to be part of your life. This is because you, alone, are enough and worth everything in the world. Staying true to your boundaries will help you to stay confident in yourself and your decisions that you make.

Stay Confident in Yourself

You are making good decisions. You are being a good person. You will attract the love of your life. These are things that you should be telling yourself. While this can help to boost confidence, it will help if you actually mean them. Confidence has a way of radiating from people and can lead to others being attracted by how you are treating yourself. This energy will lead to someone finding you who respects you and appreciates you.

While finding the love of your life sounds like a daunting process, it does not have to be challenging. The first step begins with you. Finding out who you truly are and staying authentic can help attract the right people to you. Remaining confident in yourself, as well as knowing your worth, can help you to build long and healthy relationships.