Do You Have to be Dating to Go Out Together?

Many times people get bored and want to go out in the evening. If buddies of your same gender are not available is it OK to simply go out with someone of the opposite sex and not be dating, not be interested in sex on the first date? Maybe your friends that would like to go to a baseball game are not interested in the movies and your friends that might like going shopping are not interested in a trip to the zoo. If there is someone of the opposite sex who is interested in the things that you like do you have to be dating to go out together? Here are a few thoughts on the subject.

Shared Interests

It is OK to have shared interests with someone who is not your boyfriend, girlfriend or spouse. It is also OK to enjoy these shared interests with such a person. But there are things to watch out for such as falling in love with the person with whom you share a given interest or finding out that they are falling in love with you. And there is the matter of appearance if one of you is married or in a long standing relationship. Why, people will ask, are you spending time with a single man or woman when you are married? For that matter if you really enjoy the company of that new person it may be a good idea to decide early on if having someone with shared interests is more important than the stability of your long term relationship or marriage.

What is So Bad about Being Friends?

We wrote about being just good friends. And we noted the disappointment that occurs when one person wants more. You do not need to be dating to go out together but beware of being just good friends who do things together when your friend thinks it is something else.

You are 14 and in love with the girl across the aisle in algebra class. You finally get up the nerve to ask her out to a movie. She gives you her best sisterly smile and says that although she really likes you the two of you can only be just good friends. Hopefully, you catch the part where she leaves school by the back door and jumps into the passenger seat of her 18 year old boy friend’s convertible on her way to a make out session. This part is painful but a necessary part of growing up.

If you are a 14 year old girl and madly in love with the boy next door he may suggest that the two of you are just good friends. You will live in hope that just good friends could turn into something more until you hear giggling in your sister’s bedroom and peek around the door. As your sister struggles to extract herself from the boy’s embrace and cover herself you are immediately, if painfully, cured of the just good friends curse.

Beware of becoming friends and wanting more. There are many ways to arrive at a happy relationship but also many ways to be terribly disappointed.

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