As we jump out of the marriage series, we’ll be diving right into the next which will be a series of guest posts on how dating is in different parts of the world. To start it off, my dear friend and fellow blogger, Olivia, has kindly put her hand up to give us the scoop of how the dating scene is in the UK.
Other posts in the series:
Hi everyone, my names Olivia from olivialucieblake.com. I’m a lifestyle blogger that writes about a wide range of different topics on self-love, well-being and relationships just to name a few. I’m thankful that this is my second time being on Shelly’s blog, and although our blog niches are different to one another. I love that we can always find topics that we can both learn from and come together to share some knowledge about.
I’m so excited for this opportunity to be part of Shelly’s series on dating around the world. I find it so interesting how being from different parts of the world that we all have different thoughts and opinions on dating and relationships. And I can imagine it’d be quite boring if we all thought the same wouldn’t it?
I just want to mention before I begin that these thoughts are my own, I of course don’t represent the whole of England or the UK for that matter. So what my thoughts on UK dating are just my experiences and might differ from other people from the UK.
Shelly provided me with some questions, I’ll start by answering some of those and then at the end I’ll do a little recap of what’s been discussed in the post. So lets get started!
Whats and acceptable age to start dating in the UK?
For me personally, it wasn’t until I was over with High School that I really took any interest in dating or relationships. I think the High School experience can have an effect on whether you pursue a relationship or not. I’m saying that because most of the people in my year at HS (high school) were getting in and out of relationships from a young age. I wasn’t one of those people, I kept myself to myself. I do remember knowing guys outside of my school that I used to talk to and had been on a few dates with. The dating age just seems to be getting younger and younger here, which is quite scary when you think about it!
I think it’s down to parenting too. If you came from a strict household there would be no way you’d be allowed to date, but if your parents didn’t really care too much you could basically start dating at any time. My parents were not strict, but I knew better than to bring several different guys to my house ha-ha.
What is dating in the UK like?
This is a tough one to answer, I guess dating in the UK is probably like everywhere else. It’s hard. You never really know anyone’s intentions, especially if it’s through a dating app. I think the whole socialisation aspect of dating has disappeared. It’s now considered rare if you meet your potential partner in person rather than online. Whereas a few years ago it was the other way around.
Online dating is now at the forefront of how people meet. Most of my friends met their partners online. But again, for me, it’s hard to know their intentions. Or whether or not they’re a serial killer or not ha-ha! A lot of the time guys just want hookups, Tinder is probably the worst one for this. There are diamonds in the rough, but it’s so hard to filter them out from all of the other guys on these apps. Most people just want something casual and not a relationship, and personally, that’s not for me. I have found in the past that guys are usually upfront with you and let you know their intentions, which I think is good. But again, it’s hard to find someone who wants something serious. I’m not sure what that says about my generation, maybe we have all developed commitment issues!
How soon is too soon to meet the parents?
Personally, I think it’s once you are serious with one another. I tend to keep my dating life private until there’s something to tell. I only usually tell my close friends; family never know about dates or anyone I’m talking to. I don’t do this because I want to keep it a secret. But I don’t want to go around telling people something and then the next week saying that it’s not happening anymore. I’d rather wait until it’s serious and I feel like they need to meet my parents. Parental approval is so very important too in my eyes. I want my friends and family to love the person I’m with too. I know other people who have taken their dates home after the first date or first time meeting. I’ve done this in the past and learnt my lesson from it!
What’s it like dating between races and social classes?
Interracial dating is very common here, and I have had inter-racial relationships before. Again, this would depend on what ethnic/religious background you and your family have. Some cultures don’t agree with dating or marriage outside of theirs, but for me, that’s never been the case. I come from a Caribbean background and have never felt that I wasn’t ‘allowed’ to date outside of my race. I think experiencing other races and cultures is very important and something we should all take the time to learn about outside of the dating world.
In regards to social classes, I don’t pay much attention to those. I don’t even think about or consider what social class the guy I’m talking to is from. I care more about their character, morals and who they are as people. Again, some people find that social classes are really important to them and their families, but that’s down to different cultures and backgrounds.
When you go out, who gets the bill?
So, this is quite a controversial topic, for me personally I will always pay for myself on the first date at least. My mindset is, why should this man pay for me when he hardly knows me. I’d rather pay for myself, and then if things progress, we take it in turns. That’s what me and my past relationships used to do.
Some people take it so seriously and insist that the guy must pay, but to me, that’s such an old-school way of thinking, I think. We are both adults with our own money, I can pay for my own food. I see it as a nice gesture but not something I would want my date to do for me. And I think a lot of younger people in the UK have this mindset too. I’ve been on dates before and told the guy beforehand that I’ll be paying for myself. It saves the awkward moment when the bill comes!
Do you agree on dating multiple people?
I really agree with this and tell my friends this all of the time. There are many people here who don’t agree and say that if you are dating one person you shouldn’t be seeing anyone else. But in my mind, if I go on one date with a guy, that doesn’t automatically mean I am off the market. That’s what dating is, you are dating people to figure out if you have a connection with any of them.
Number one rule in dating, don’t put all of your eggs in one basket!
Final comments on dating in the UK?
As I have said through all of this post, it’s all situational and depends on different factors. If you come from a strict, very traditional household then the answers to these questions will be quite different. Dating in the UK is hard, it’s hard to find people who are good and have a lot of the qualities you want from a partner. That’s probably why a lot of people tend to date outside of their country. Cultures and morals change from place to place, as this series is showing.
I hope you liked this small Insight into dating life in the UK and hope it gave some useful information on the subject!
Thanks again Shelly for the opportunity to write this post today. I look forward to hearing everybody’s thoughts on what I have written!