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His story is very romantic and touching, but there’s a catch: he and his fiancée have never actually dated. Some countries, especially in Asia and the Middle East, continue this tradition till today, but with some adjustments.In certain cases, instead of forcefully setting up their sons and daughters who have never previously met one another, the boy’s family sets up a date to visit the girl’s house and “asks for her hand in marriage.” This way, both parties and their families can actually get a say in whether or not they want to marry the person in mind. How are two people going to skip months of dating, getting to know one another, and all the other big things that go into building a strong relationship to jump into marriage?You don’t ever have to be scared of getting your heart broken. Last week, as I was talking to a friend of mine who comes from Egypt, I found myself in the midst of an interesting conversation.He curiously asked me about dating culture in the United States and admitted that he can’t seem to make sense of how it works.During that period, they will have time to get to know each other and do all other things normal Western couples would do, with the minor difference that they are assured it is going to go somewhere serious.As a young adult living in 21st century America, hearing this honestly didn’t sound too bad to me.
He then explained to me how things work a lot differently in his culture, as he has been engaged for two years and plans to marry his fiancée and start a family upon completion of his graduate degree. Arranged marriages were a commonly accepted practice all the way till the 18th century.Imagine meeting a boy or girl you really like and wanting to get to know them better.Everything goes exactly as planned: no playing games, no “talking” phase, no constant confusion, and no need to ever have the “what are we” conversation because you already have utter assurance that you are going to spend the rest of your life with this wonderful person.Colonial society came up with a fairly ingenious solution. Which makes modern parents look pretty lame by comparison. Not necessarily while bundling, but behind the barn, in the meadow, during the corn shuck fest.If you were 17, you might suggest to your strict Christian parents that you'd like to snuggle up with sultry Goodie Sally from across the hog farm. You've probably heard of this practice, called "bundling," where unmarried couples could sleep together in the same bed, sometimes with a plank placed between them (for all the good it would do). They planned ahead for it like some parents today stock their son's skater pants with condoms. HOLD HANDS AND MAKE EMPTY PROMISES Handfasting, or spousing, was another way for a dishonorable young rogue to get lucky.