Long-distance courtship

Roosh

Cardinal
Has anyone tried a long-distance courtship with a Christian woman? I do mean a courtship that doesn't involve sexual intimacy.

I talked to my priest about this and he said it would be very difficult, since you really need to get to know the woman before deciding. Even if you were able to spend time with a woman for, say, 10 weekends, which in some cases would be difficult, is that enough to make a decision on whether to marry?
 

Max Roscoe

Kingfisher
My thought on this is that it's very reminiscent of the dating scenario from 100 years ago. Back then it was common to meet a girl for the first time at a dance, exchange information, perhaps meeting on her front porch a couple of times, but typically the young man was soon headed off to war. The couple would write each other letters, and if the man survived, when he came back they usually wed.

I think about this a lot as it was proof that in a time with good societal mores, it didn't really matter so much what a girl looked like or what her background was, and it certainly dispels the "soulmate" nonsense. You could go to a dance or a sock hop or some other benign social gathering where young people met, make contact with the first girl that you felt a connection to, and that could easily end up being your wife, with basically no chance of divorce.

Of course these days, telling a man to rush into a wedding because he met a nice young lady would of course be suicidal, so I understand the priest's advice, but I still think if she possessed most of the qualities of that time (good upbringing, happily married parents, no alcohol, drugs or social media narcissism, good friends, strong faith in God--your average girl would have all of these back then) then it could work.

The dating I did with the most religious girl I dated involved a lot of time at her parents house. Her parents took me on a camping trip in their RV. I was not ready for marriage at the time and didn't realize that's what the girl was looking for, but there were lots of meals and movies with her family.

Other than her I have experience with several long distance relationships that were not with strong Godly women, but what I liked about it is it does allow or force you to get to know the girl in ways that you don't by doing traditional coffee shop / concert / club dating. You can't just enjoy passive entertainment together (Netflix n chill) so you are forced to engage with each other more, have deeper discussions, play games to get to know each other etc. I have one friend in an out of country LTR like this and I am encouraging him.
 
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There used to be a blog (now defunct) called "The No Nonsense Man" by Marc Rudov (correct spelling?) There were a number of useful relationship articles, including one that examined the vast amount of unnecessary time couples waste by dating with the usual & prolonged 'getting to know someone' approach. This still stands out in my mind:

"Three weeks" is all that it takes, if the couple have a mature attitude, to determine if they are respective marriage material.

So your 10 weekends (20 days) is sufficient. Make the time together count, and be upfront with each other about where you both want the relationship to go, and why.

Regarding the online aspect, Max Roscoe is correct about actually having to truly 'get to know each other', since your dates can't revolve around the typical external (distracting) stimuli.

I believe that many marriages fail due to the couple not laying a solid foundation while dating; most of their 'together time' being focused on "having fun"/being compatible because they share the same taste in [insert recreation]/showing each other off to their friends/etc.

Proverbs 14:15
Proverbs 22:3
Ephesians 5:15-16
 
I would say the key matter would be truly knowing the nature of her character, and whether or not she is being a chameleon. But this of course can be a problem in either a ldr or a close-up one. I have often heard that it's good for a man to test a woman by putting her in a challenging/difficult situation (engine trouble, long hike, or even something customized just for her) to see her true self revealed, when under unpleasant pressure, with no quick remedy.

I thought these were both excellent articles about long distance Christian courtship...


 

redbeard

Hummingbird
Moderator
I have a good friend who did this. But, he's a member of a serious Orthodox Jewish community. In their tradition, the process starts with a matchmaker pairing you with someone. After that, you're allowed to go on 3 dates. When the third date concludes, the man is expected to propose or break-up. There are no other options.

I watched him court a few women with varied success. One apparent downside is that although they were flying to meet up, three dates just isn't enough time to really get to know somebody. There was one time that he got engaged, but broke up during the engagement process because they disagreed on so much.

As someone who's engaged, I think it's crucial to have more face-time in the courtship period. 3 dates is not enough, and said dates must be very stressful knowing that you have a deadline on the horizon.

3-6 months of dating before getting engaged seems to be the sweet spot. When you're not having sex, you get to know someone so much faster. You'd be surprised how much you can talk about when you don't have your "vagina blinders" on (h/t LDN).

The benefit to the Orthodox Jewish route is that their courtship process is much faster because their shared faith provides so much commonality. We know that having the same beliefs as your spouse is important, but you should take it a step further and find someone who shares your exact same beliefs. When you and someone share the same faith, down to the T, you instantly have so much more in common than some random girl you meet on the street.

When I say specific I mean really specific. Not just Catholic, not just trad-Cath, even more than that. I'm not sure what the Orthodox divisions are but I guess for you it'd be someone who's Armenian Orthodox. For Protestants, make sure she's the same line as you.

This is important because you're going to spend the rest of your life with this woman. For example what if you're both Catholic, but you like Latin and she likes English, there's going to be friction. Or if you don't eat meat on Fridays, and she does. Not good.

Your faith is the bedrock of your relationship, and it's crucial that you two share the same beliefs & practices.

My Jewish friend is now happily married so it worked out. But, it was not easy, and the courtship and engagement periods were challenging. These times are difficult already (speaking from experience) and they would be 100x more difficult if we couldn't spend time together face-to-face.

To sum it up, I would suggest against long-distance courtship unless she was an exemplary candidate, she's of the same faith, AND you can move to the same city before getting engaged. Other than that it's just not worth it, and you should keep looking in your local parish.
 

monsquid

Kingfisher
I like the traditional methods such as the Orthodox Jews or even old world European Christians practiced. The Chinese and Persian elite also practiced a similar matchmaking process for hundreds if not thousands of years. It's almost like the wisdom, education, and intelligence of elders and community leadership in these separate and independent cultures all figured out that economic, family, and cultural compatibility is best decided by the family and community in marriage.

They also knew the "college roommate" effect where two total strangers can become best friends for life if they spend time together and create shared experiences. In fact, such bonds are often stronger because there are few expectations and each person grows on the other gradually and naturally. Compared to modern dating where looks, status, and other superficial factors have outsized roles, the traditional matchmaking process is more wholesome and successful. The biggest misconception is that modern SJW's, feminists, and soyboys think that this process is non-consensual, but that is not the case. Sure the family and community arranges the courtship process but the bridge and groom are allowed to meet each other for basic compatibility before proceeding forward. If there is no chemistry at all, then they restart the process. There is a higher probability of successful union because factors such as looks, education, family, and status are all objectively evaluated by the matchmakers and the community, removing the burden from the couple.

We can see that the lack of community in the West and modernized city living anywhere in the world is where the real problems are. History and studies have shown that as population density increases people's trust, sense of community, and congeniality decrease. No surprise then that marriage and the marriage process have declined as well.
 
I met my girlfriend online through a pen pal program. At the time, we lived in almost opposite parts of Europe, and all our interactions were through writing. We only met face to face after a few months - she came to visit a friend who was studying in my city, and we took the opportunity to get to know each other. The next month, I went and visited her, asked her to be my girlfriend, and she accepted. Ended up going through 2+ years of a long distance relationship, where we met maybe 10 times or so. Eventually she found a job here, and we moved together. This means we've been together for a bit more than 5 years.

Now, after I met her the first time, I had a very good feeling that we'd be together for a long time. We talked quite a lot online, and got along remarkably well - so, our relationship started from the fact that we have a compatible worldview, or to put it more simply, we "clicked". And after meeting her, I discovered that she's quite pretty, and that she doesn't mind my looks. Those two put together are, IME, the foundation for a successful relationship. So, I'd say that yes, spending 10 weekends with a women are more than enough, provided you keep in contact with her during the "time off".
 

redbeard

Hummingbird
Moderator
I met my girlfriend online through a pen pal program. At the time, we lived in almost opposite parts of Europe, and all our interactions were through writing. We only met face to face after a few months - she came to visit a friend who was studying in my city, and we took the opportunity to get to know each other. The next month, I went and visited her, asked her to be my girlfriend, and she accepted. Ended up going through 2+ years of a long distance relationship, where we met maybe 10 times or so. Eventually she found a job here, and we moved together. This means we've been together for a bit more than 5 years.
Like I mentioned, it's harder to get face-time in when you're doing long-distance. This draws out the process considerably. It took you "2+ years" to accomplish the equivalent of 3-6 months of in-person courtship.
 
Like I mentioned, it's harder to get face-time in when you're doing long-distance. This draws out the process considerably. It took you "2+ years" to accomplish the equivalent of 3-6 months of in-person courtship.

It took me 2+ years because I couldn't afford to have her here without her having a job. As I said, it was apparent from the beginning that we clicked, and we didn't need those 2+ years to figure out we wanted to be together. Still, I do think I was extremely lucky (blessed?) and that my example lies in the tail-end of the "how long did it take you to figure it out"-distribution. My example was mostly to illustrate that one doesn't need a lot of face-to-face interaction to know a woman. If anything, knowing that a woman is pretty/hot will cloud your judgement in all other aspects that matter.
 

fork

Chicken
While I haven't personally done this, one of my best friends began dating his now wife of 11 years from 350 miles away. They met on eHarmony and talked nightly for a few weeks before they decided to meet in person. He drove to her hometown and stayed with her parents the whole weekend while getting to know the family. From the beginning, he made it clear that his intentions were marriage. They had a relatively short engagement (6 months) and I was proud to be a groomsman in his wedding. They now have two beautiful children and a Christ based marriage.
 
I was in a long distance relationship with a Christian girl for about a year. I would not do it again. You need become familiar with the girl's family, and evaluate several things about the girl:
- How does she respond to stressful situations?
- What is her spiritual life like?
- How does she treat people that she interacts with?
- Does she try to be a homemaker?
In my case, I thought I knew the girl pretty well when we started dating since we'd been acquainted for several years. But I didn't, and dating long-distance made it take much longer than it should have for me to realize she was not a suitable match.
 

chaosblade

Chicken
I've done it with a Christian girl in the USA. Unfortunately, I chose to end things after a few months because I was finalizing my conversion to Orthodoxy at the time, and she was a hardline Calvinist who wouldn't budge. We were highly compatible, and I got really good insight into her because of how open she was about her personal history. This gave me a good level of trust because it showed me her mind was in the right place when she discussed how she interpreted events. However, I could sense I wouldn't be able to "hold on" to the relationship due to the religious differences, and that feeling was exacerbated by me wanting someone more attractive.

I spoke to my priest about it as well, and he told me that ultimately, either I go to see her, or vice versa. He mentioned that it's hard to get to know someone based solely off of words on a screen. I'm inclined to agree- it's easy for someone to get the wrong idea of you because they only know you over text. Practically speaking though, I really think that it depends. If both parties are willing to be completely vulnerable and transparent with each other throughout, you can mitigate the impact of having only text because the quality of information will be good. It'll give you enough to go on if you're debating pulling the trigger or not. But if you're both putting up fronts or unwilling to dive into difficult conversations to make up for the lack of physical proximity, it'll be like building a house on sand.

Would I do it again? I would. But if I were to do it this time around, I'd want to see the relationship thrive over a 1-2 year period before making a serious decision like moving or marriage. I could easily waive that for 10 weekends though- because you'll still end up with enough information to work with, including what married life with her might be like, at least in the early phases. An in-person meetup will be treated way differently if it's a special thing, and might just end up being nothing more than a highlight reel. But that's why you have all the honest texting anyway.
 

Leonard D Neubache

Owl
Gold Member
Remember that engaged isn't married.

Obviously proposing marriage shouldn't be taken lightly but if she turns out to be a phony during the time between proposal and marriage then you can still pull the eject lever.

Keep in mind that the more red-pilled a man is on female behavior the shorter the time he requires to judge her character. I suspect long co-habitation periods are in part a product of men and women being historically ignorant of what to look for in a partner and basically being reduced to "playing pretend marriage" for long enough that they can have some assurances on committing to the arrangement permanently.
 
I will say that even doing regular video calls has its limits for really getting to know a person. But it does keep the romantic feelings going... Lol

The problem with text is that you can have a meeting of the minds, but if you have never actually met, you don't know if you have actual physical chemistry. You don't need to act on it right away, but you must have it, for later.

I've known couples who spent many many hours in online chatting and video calls, to share and connect, but when they finally met, the chemistry was just not there, to their great mutual sadness and disappointment.
 
I've been talking to a Turkish girl for one year now. Shes a traditional and modest girl. My background is Syrian so it's good in a sense that I kinda look Turkish myself. But how I would marry her seems extremely difficult, especially with Corona and restrictions with air travel and visas are increasingly difficult to obtain. Should just forget it but I wonder why it was gods will for me to connect with her online
 

Coja Petrus Uscan

Hummingbird
Gold Member
Red flags are apparent from the first time you meet in the flesh, if you choose to see them beyond the lure of flesh. They are harder to see on video calls and harder to see on text messages. If talking online you should be on videos calls and meet them quickly. It is not fare on someone if you spend a year talking to someone only to find you don't like them.

I don't believe that a long time is required to get to know someone sufficiently for marriage. My grandmother, who was of New Julfa stock, met her husband three times before getting married and mainly corresponded by letter. My other grandparents mainly got to know each other by letter during WWII. I got engaged to one girl after about six weeks - her parents met three times before marriage. The parents of the girl I trusted the most were married by arrangement, when her mother was 16. All of these marriages were superior than the 10-year co-habitation marriages of today. Simple because the participants were still of a tradition that promoted virtues that are conducive to marriage; and buttressed by the fact it was difficult to divorce; and talk of divorce would lead to family and friends policing them back into the marriage.

Online dating should not be a part of our culture. It should be the reserve of Antifa. The only reason it exists is because of the gutting of traditional bonds and customs. Now is not the time for purism. Now is the time to make the best of what you have to start re-building a society that can pass itself on to the next generation. It is not ideal to use online dating; to peruse for wives abroad; to marry a Pino, Africa, or Latina; to leave your homeland and so on. But it is obvious why those paths are chosen in the present. They are a means to an ends and a path of little resistance.

Our current culture is dominated by extroverts. They are the loudest, least introspective and ones with the most shame. The current society is not particularly conducive to introverts, particularly when it comes to jumping like a poodle through the hoops of dopamine addicted women. I feel there are a great number of men who would have been decent catches 200 years ago who are now incel or adjacent, simply because they are reserved and don't know how to stimulate superficial women or open more bookish women. These men have always existed and they used to have marriages eased their way if not arranged, to women who were happy to marry them. For these type of men, online is a good substitute for the decay of tradition.

You have the capacity to love anyone. It is a matter of whether you choose to do so and continue to work with them and them you. So long as you can achieve that - you should seek marriage by whichever means you think you can. There was a thread, which may have been deleted, by a user by the name of Truth Tiger describing his experiences on dating sites. He reviewed a number of religious ones and described some of the women he conversed with on there. Some of them were the real deal - the type of women most here are seeking. I took a look on some of the sites and found several. One was a 21yo girl in Ireland who wanted to live on a farm and have children like clockwork. Another was looking for a man to raise her under the patriarchy. If you are in The US in particular I think you should be on those sites. That I can remember Christian Mingle, Catholic Match.
 

Barron

Ostrich
Gold Member
To be honest, I feel like meeting a girl online that lives in another city (not via a dating site) is a great way to start a relationship.

This is because it removes all symptoms of the big city like transcience and fakeness. If a girl is interested in you she'll make the time to msg or video chat, and that time you guys spend talking will be quality time getting to know each other compared to day gaming some random girl on the street or meeting at a bar, etc where everyone is fake and misbehaves without consequence.

Finally meeting in person after chatting online for a few months is always interesting because you've already built a genuine rapport.

Sites for meeting or talking are good.
Sites for dating are bad and must be avoided as they carry all the drawbacks of a nightclub.
 

Nascimento

Ostrich
Gold Member
Interesting subject.

I'm currently exploring this right now, with the added benefit of having met in person and a first date. Distance will keep us apart for the foreseeable future but there should be chances to reconnect in person soon.

It's not a Christian approach but it's definitely more traditional than anything I've tried. I haven't forced it that way, it's naturally played out. I have to say it's nice seeing mutual feelings develop without any kind of lust driving it, as it's just been a very natural desire to get to know each other and get closer. So if/when we get intimate it's going to be a much better thing than aiming at that first, and seeing if you get to like each other later. I'm just tired of that.
 

GWYW2015

Woodpecker
Has anyone tried a long-distance courtship with a Christian woman? I do mean a courtship that doesn't involve sexual intimacy.

I talked to my priest about this and he said it would be very difficult, since you really need to get to know the woman before deciding. Even if you were able to spend time with a woman for, say, 10 weekends, which in some cases would be difficult, is that enough to make a decision on whether to marry?
I most certainly have although it wasn't a long courtship. I proposed to her on day 18 from about 9800 miles away thinking we had talked for longer than that. She said she would marry me but wanted me to meet her and her family in the Philippines, which I did as soon as possible. We were married in fifty four days. That was over five years ago so we've been married almost the whole time we've known each other.

No sexual intimacy was needed as I wouldn't allow it. We had a couple of weeks for that after we married and then I returned to America to begin the spousal visa process.

The reason I approved of us getting married so rapidly was that I didn't want to know everything about her, just what I believed was important for me to know. The rest we have the rest of our lives to discover.
 

GWYW2015

Woodpecker
My thought on this is that it's very reminiscent of the dating scenario from 100 years ago. Back then it was common to meet a girl for the first time at a dance, exchange information, perhaps meeting on her front porch a couple of times, but typically the young man was soon headed off to war. The couple would write each other letters, and if the man survived, when he came back they usually wed.

I think about this a lot as it was proof that in a time with good societal mores, it didn't really matter so much what a girl looked like or what her background was, and it certainly dispels the "soulmate" nonsense. You could go to a dance or a sock hop or some other benign social gathering where young people met, make contact with the first girl that you felt a connection to, and that could easily end up being your wife, with basically no chance of divorce.

Of course these days, telling a man to rush into a wedding because he met a nice young lady would of course be suicidal, so I understand the priest's advice, but I still think if she possessed most of the qualities of that time (good upbringing, happily married parents, no alcohol, drugs or social media narcissism, good friends, strong faith in God--your average girl would have all of these back then) then it could work.

The dating I did with the most religious girl I dated involved a lot of time at her parents house. Her parents took me on a camping trip in their RV. I was not ready for marriage at the time and didn't realize that's what the girl was looking for, but there were lots of meals and movies with her family.

Other than her I have experience with several long distance relationships that were not with strong Godly women, but what I liked about it is it does allow or force you to get to know the girl in ways that you don't by doing traditional coffee shop / concert / club dating. You can't just enjoy passive entertainment together (Netflix n chill) so you are forced to engage with each other more, have deeper discussions, play games to get to know each other etc. I have one friend in an out of country LTR like this and I am encouraging him.
I agree very much with you. My very long distance relationship negated the possibility of being intimate while it aided us to ask pertinent questions because both of us wanted to get married. I had waited so long it was refreshing to meet women who seemed they sincerely wanted to get married.
 
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