Some say the “DTR” is required. (That’s “define the relationship” for those who are either behind the times or who are married and no longer need this vital information.) Others say the relationship has to be publicly recognized. The guy may define it one way, and the girl another.
One’s definition of the term “dating” can cause a lot of confusion, and subsequently, a lot of frustration for the roommates obligated to console their confused friends. Surely a pattern of consensus can be found. So we asked students the question, what does it mean to be “dating” someone?
“It could be either just going on dates with someone or it could be what my parents call ‘going steady,’ where you’re more just going on dates with one person.” –
Amy Vanden Brink, senior, humanities, Temecula, Calif.
“If you say you’re dating someone it means exclusively — nobody else. If you continue to date them, you think that they may be a viable candidate for marriage.” –
Cami Allred, master’s of nursing, Springville
“Shoot. To be dating someone means to be going on dates. I think that’s kind of obvious. Dating someone means that you like them and they like you and you’re both interested in getting to know each other further; and there’s some level of commitment involved.” –
Christian Hanselmann, senior, exercise and wellness, Indianapolis, Ind.
“I don’t really know. Either you say you’re going out with them or you’re like seriously involved with them, invested in trying to get married with them.” –
Cody Weller, junior, economics, Sugar City, Idaho
“I don’t know; I’m married. It means you’re exclusively dating somebody.” –
Dallen Allred, senior, economics, Provo
“To be going on consistent dates with them and not seeing anyone else.” –
Hailey Billat, freshman, nursing, Parker, Colo.
“Well dating is a general term. If it’s like seriously dating or casually dating that makes a big difference. Dating in general is like the three P’s: Planned, paid for and paired off. That’s from the general authorities. They know what they’re talking about.” –
Heather Patiño, senior, family studies and visual arts, Brigham City
“It depends. Everyone has different definitions. For some people, dating is like you just go on dates. For other people dating is like you kiss or you hold hands. It depends on people’s definitions and whether you’re openly dating or you’re exclusively dating.” –
Heidi Sommer, senior, human development, Kayesville
“Be in an established and publicly recognized relationship. I feel like if it’s not something that people are aware of then it hasn’t reached the point that you’re actually in a relationship.” –
Jeremy Miller, senior, humanities, Lakeville, Minn.
“It means you are interested in them and do a lot of stuff with them and are working toward marriage, probably.” –
Jesse Bahr, junior, electrical engineering, Payson
“It means that you’re seeing them on a regular basis. I would think of dating as being exclusive, so if I was dating someone then I wouldn’t be dating anyone else. I wouldn’t be going out with anyone else at the same time. I’m married so I’m ‘dating plus.’ Whatever you want to call that. I’m not dating anyone else for the record.” –
Josh Bishop, graduate student, J.D.M.P.A. law and master’s in public administration, Orem
“There’s surface dating, which has no commitment. Then there is dating where there’s commitment involved so you’re not dating anybody else, just one person.” –
Kimber Killpack, junior, dietetics, Springville
“It means that they are calling you up and asking you out and taking you to do things.” –
Kristen Somerville, junior, health and wellness, Lehi
“Dating does depend on your definition. For a lot of people it does just mean dating around, going on dates, having fun, getting to know people. For other people it’s more ‘courting,’ I guess would be the old-fashioned word for it, where you’re dating with the intent of getting married.” –
Mary Daniel, graduate, home and family living, Apex, N.C.
“You’re meeting with them frequently and talking with them, and they’re the opposite sex.” –
Matthew Argyle, senior, English, Chino Valley, Ariz.
“Be in a relationship.” –
Paula Chen, junior, computer science, Taiwan
“Oh that’s a hard question. I think to be officially termed or to be able to officially (say) that you’re dating someone it’s an agreement between the two of you, or to just exclusively date someone.” –
Renae Dorius, sophomore, archaeology, Bountiful
“After having the ‘DTR,’ the talk, you consider her your girlfriend. I’ve been dating someone for three months and we were official after we had that talk. You have to have that talk. You can’t just assume that you’re dating. You have to actually lay it out there on the table.” –
Scott Jackson, senior, accounting, Atlanta, Ga.
“It could mean that you’re sort of in an exclusive relationship where you’ve both sort of said, ‘Hey we’re only going to see each other. We’re not going to go date other people.’ I think, generally, both are true. It just kind of depends on the situation.”
Taylor Smith, senior, English, Dallas
“I would say to have DTRed, to have gone on a few dates and decided you wanted to keep going.” –
Taylor Williams, junior, history teaching, Parker, Colo.