These Are The Ways Dating Has Changed In The Past Century

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that dating works a little differently today than it did in the past. In the early 20th century, dating was more about social status than it was about finding love. As such, the parents, particularly the father, of the woman would typically be involved. By the middle of the century, getting married shortly after high school was the norm, which didn’t leave much time to date around. Nowadays, online dating offers countless prospective suitors, but the process of dating seems more watered down. Read on to discover how dating has changed, for better or for worse, over the past 100 years.

Courting Became Dating

Cambridge Dictionary defines courting as “to have a romantic relationship with someone that you hope to marry.” While this may at first sound similar to dating, the differences are fundamental. As more and more people began attending college and joining different workforces, they became exposed to more potential partners.

A couple walks outside.
Christian Vierig/Getty Images
Christian Vierig/Getty Images

Thus, dating emerged as a less structured adaptation of courtship. Free of the pressure to get married, people who are attracted to one another could have fun getting to know each other. In essence, dating places emphasis on the journey rather than the destination.