Dating Dilemmas to AvoidWhen it comes to online dating scams, hookups, and toxic relationships, even the most experienced daters can get into any number of dating dilemmas. While dating can be daunting—if you use discernment—it doesn’t have to be. The Bible says, “Commit your actions to the Lord, and your plans will succeed” (Proverbs 16:3, New Living Translation). You can be successful in dating if you know some dating dilemmas to watch out for.

1. Getting Scammed
Did you know that according to the F.B.I., romance scams resulted in the third-highest crime losses on the internet in 2021?

Here are some signs of a romance scam:

  • They live far away and can’t visit.
  • Their profile is too good to be true.
  • They create a sense of urgency.
  • The relationship moves fast.
  • They ask for money.

2. Being Unequally Yoked
The Bible verse used to refer to being “unequally yoked” is 2 Corinthians 6:14a, which in the New King James Version says, “Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers…” To be yoked refers to two oxen joined by a bar. When oxen are not equally yoked, they cannot complete a task. Unequal yoking in dating hurts your walk with God. If someone isn’t a Christian, beware of the dangers of dating them.

3. Dating Only One Person
Dating a couple of people helps you not become overly attached to someone who might not work out. In Steve Arterburn’s book, Is This the One?, he suggests going on 10 dates with 10 different people “to avoid the regret of never having been on a date with someone else.”

4. Talking About an Ex
Nothing is worse than going on a first date and hearing someone talk about their ex the whole night. While there is a time and place to talk about an ex, the first date is the worst time to bring them up! When your date talks a lot about their ex—negatively or positively—this probably indicates they’re not over their ex and still need to heal.

5. Having Premarital Sex
The Bible is clear that you should wait until you get married to have sex (see Matthew 19:5, Mark 10:7, 1 Corinthians 6:18, and Hebrews 13:4). Be clear to anyone you’re dating that you are waiting to have sex until marriage. If they insist, consider breaking up.

6. Disregarding Your Boundaries
A big dating dilemma to avoid is dating someone who disrespects your boundaries. The main sign that someone you’re dating doesn’t respect your boundaries is if they don’t stop their actions, even after you’ve expressed discomfort and said something like, “I don’t feel comfortable with that.” Having someone disregard your boundaries in dating is bad, but it will get even worse after marriage.

7. Harboring Secrets
Asking the right questions while dating is crucial to understanding if your date could be keeping secrets from you. For example, women should always ask a man that they are dating, “What has your experience with pornography been?” A question both men and women can ask is, “Do you use any drugs, or have you ever?” How your date responds might show if they’re lying or hiding something.

8. Neglecting Friends and Family
One of the worst things that can happen is for you, or your date, to neglect friends and family. What if the person you are dating is jealous or angry when you spend time with others? This may be a sign that the person you’re dating is controlling, struggles with low self-worth, or is anxious.

9. Moving Too Fast
Have you met someone who is a believer and seems to be a good fit for you? Make sure you don’t move too quickly. Date for at least a year; see a licensed counselor in the New Life Counselors Network to do premarital counseling before getting married.

We know how frustrating dating can be. For help, call 800-NEW-LIFE (639-5433).

by Kimberlee Bousman

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