It may surprise you to see how much dating is actually going on! Rather than leaving everything to chance, dating academy grads understand what needs to happen and they plan accordingly.

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You can brainstorm with friends really fun ideas for a date.

Then work together to think of what planning is required to make those ideas actually happen. In the Richardson Dating Academy, all of our children practiced dating invitations.

Most memorable was an older sister showing how she could turn a hug into a handshake with the grace of a princess and the speed of a ninja.

You too can get together with family members and role-play different scenarios that might happen on a doorstep.

Can you explain the purposes of dating and the specific dating standards and guidelines set by the Church?

Or, do you know when it’s most appropriate to be involved in dating and steady dating (having a boyfriend or girlfriend)?

Or, you can ask your parents to let you plan the next family outing. Plan all the details (event times, travel time, cost, backup plans) and then put your plan into action. For example, our children might call an aunt, older sibling, or other family member to practice inviting someone on a date.

You could even come up with a dating plan complete with backup ideas if something goes wrong and share it in family home evening, while talking together around the dinner table, or with friends. Or our son or daughter would receive an invitation from a family member and practice responding.

Our youth enjoyed role-playing different situations to think about how to act most appropriately.