WB - I'm LDS age 14, and I was woundering, am I aloud to have a boy friend as long as I don't go on dates with him? Cuz I ask people and some say I can some say I can't. I'm really mixed up about it. I wouldnt be kissing him or any thing. To have a boy friend is just kinda like to say your taken.
JOEL - My answer depends on one very important question. Are you a girl or a boy? If you're a boy, it's time to talk to your bishop. Just kidding!
My answer to this question might not be very objective because I have a 14 year old daughter. And my answer to her would be, "No! You're too young!" But of course if she asked me again at age 21, I would say the same thing.
I would say that it's not so bad to have a boy friend at your age as long as you get that idea of being "taken" out of your mind. You may find out that your idea of "taken" and the boy's idea of "taken" are two different things. It's best to just be good friends with him and get to know other people as well.
The Church leaders have always counseled the youth to wait until after 16 years of age to start dating, and then even after 16, you should not pair up exclusively with one person, but should take the opportunity to get to know many people through group dating and other activities. It gives you time and the opportunity to experience different types of people and personalities so you can later make a better decision about the kind of person you would like to be with forever.
Here's some information from "For the Strength of Youth" pamphlet put out by the Church, that you should be able to get from your own Bishop:
"...do not date until you are sixteen years old. When you begin dating, go in groups or on double dates. Avoid pairing off exclusively with one partner. Make sure your parents meet and become aquainted with those you date. Later the time will come for choosing just one."
Here's some quotes from various leaders of the church:
"It is natural to date. Every right-thinking young person has a native desire to become acquainted with the opposite sex, looking eventually to pairing off in honorable marriage" (M. Petersen)
From Marion D. Hanks:
"Who? Only those whose standards are high, like your own.
Where? Clean places, decent places, proper places where you can be proud to be.
Why? Associating with others under wholesome circumstances helps develop friendships and permits you to learn about qualities and characteristics in others, to get to know them, to have fun together, to widen areas of choice, to achieve a wider and wiser vision of what one may seek in an eternal companion.
When? Not too young, not too often, not on school nights as a rule, not too expensively.
What? Fun things, wholesome things, good and useful things-...things pleasing to you, to parents, to God.
How? With others, in groups, chaperoned when proper, appropriately dressed, cheerfully, courteously, modestly, wisely, prayerfully. And let parents know where you are, with whom, doing what, and when you will return. Have a happy time!"
"Young men and women, not yet ready for marriage, should be friends with many others, but they should not engage in courting.... Friendship, not courtship, should be the relationship of teenagers.... The change of this one pattern of social activities of our youth would immediately eliminate a majority of the sins of our young folks" (Kimball, 1986).
"When you get in the teen years, your social associations should still be a general acquaintance with both boys and girls. Any dating or pairing off in social contacts should be postponed until at least the age of 16 or older, and even then there should be much judgment used in the selections and in the seriousness" (Kimball, 1975).
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