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“Help! I’m Not Sure If I’m the Right Age to Date!”

I am 13 and like a boy. I’m not sure if I’m too young to ask him out and date. And if I am the right age to date, I’m not sure how or when to ask him. I am also pretty shy in front of boys I don’t really know. I want to do what is right for me and I want God to like the decision I make. I just don’t know what to do. Please help.

Hey, girl! Thanks for trusting me with your question. I’m going to be really upfront with my answer: I believe that you’re not ready to date. I’m not going to throw out an age that I feel is right for dating, but I will give you a quick checklist and hope it helps you determine for yourself whether you’re ready.

  1. Are you ready to get married? Seriously! Why do I ask? Well, I believe that dating is the first stage of finding your husband. Anything less is a recipe for heartache. Casual dating is destructive to a future relationship with your future husband. Casual relationships don’t last and they leave you with baggage.
  2. Would you consider marrying this guy? If not, then why date him? Why open your heart up to him?
  3. Are you secure in your relationship with Christ? You really shouldn’t consider a relationship with someone else until you’re secure in your relationship with Jesus. When you’re strong in your faith, you will best know and recognize the guy you should marry.
  4. Are you confident in yourself and your ability to handle a relationship? Being in a relationship takes much responsibility. It takes selflessness, self-control, modesty and so many more characteristics needed to maintain and nurture a relationship.

There are many other things that you need to take into consideration when it comes to dating, but I urge you first to take a breath and a step back. And this is what I suggest you should do:

  1. Consider my four questions above and be honest in your responses. If you really care about pleasing God, then you will glorify Him in your actions. Casual dating is not a way to glorify Him because its intention is not for a positive, long-lasting relationship. Instead, you’re willingly giving yourself emotionally, and oftentimes physically (this could be just kissing), to someone temporarily. You’re opening yourself up to heartache.
  2. Evaluate your relationship with Christ. Work on building that relationship, and find strength and comfort in God’s love before looking for love from a guy.
  3. Read your Bible. Everything you need to know about relationships is in scripture.
  4. Look back on some of my responses regarding dating, such as “I’ve Never Kissed a Guy or Dated. Am I Being Too Picky? Advice?” and “Do I Like Him or Just the Idea of Having a Boyfriend?” I think that you will also find these helpful in answering your questions.
  5. Take dating seriously. Too often, young girls date casually as if it’s an opportunity to learn what they’re looking for in a guy. But casual dating only creates a more cynical person. And in a sense, and in many cases, they’re setting themselves and their future spouse up for failure.

Good luck and God bless!

Need some advice? Ask your relationship questions in the Ask Olivia Girl Talk forum or in the comments below and I might answer them in a future article!


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  1. Stephanie

    Posted by Stephanie on November 19, 2014 at 20:24

    This article is so true! When I was younger, I wondered if there was a magical age that I could start dating, and couldn’t wait for that to happen to me. But as it so happens, I was blessed with extreme awkwardness and moved around quite a bit so I was already 18 when I started “dating”. Honestly, many (not all) of my friends who dated that young (12, 13, etc.) have had patterns of dysfunctional relationships and don’t exactly make the best decisions now. I thought I was missing out because I didn’t have a guy of my own, and went to every school dance without a date. Now, I don’t regret a thing, and I know that there’s really no point in dating someone unless I can see a future with them 🙂

  2. sunnydeelovely

    Posted by sunnydeelovely on September 8, 2014 at 15:45

    This is really great advice! I needed to hear this. I’m not thirteen-I’m actually 17- but I still don’t think I’m ‘ready’, mostly because of the reasons you listed. I had never even thought of them before, to be honest…

    • sunnydeelovely

      Posted by sunnydeelovely on September 8, 2014 at 15:46

      as in I never really related dating to marrying. I know that may sound crazy, but I never thought “Hey if I date this person, we could potentially get married!” No one really talks about that at this age, but it’s so true! And it should be talked about more!

  3. BethDanielle

    Posted by BethDanielle on August 8, 2014 at 19:20

    Personally, I started dating when I was 13 and me and the guy both thought we were mature enough to handle it, but we weren’t and it just caused a lot of heartache for the both of us because people change and a lot of times throughout your high school years you’ll date some people who you would never even consider marrying, and even though you might want to marry them (I wanted to marry my first boyfriend too) it just isn’t what God usually has planned. Now, there are some cases where you will end up with your high school boyfriend, but really let God lead the way and don’t get into a relationship and automatically think you’re going to marry that person. I also made the mistake of getting into too serious of a relationship quite young. Just really listen to God and he will help you.

    • Writer_Girl

      Posted by Writer_Girl on August 11, 2014 at 14:49

      I had a similar thing happen when I was thirteen. I fell head over heels for him, and even though he was very sweet, he did break up with me, and it broke my heart. I was crushed, and for a long time I didn’t feel like I could/wanted to forgive him. We tried to be friends for a while, but I eventually just stopped talking to him because it hurt too much. I was the girl he contacted when he was bored, or lonely. I’m so much better now, and I honestly believe that I’m a stronger person because of this experience. So even though it hurt at the time, I praise God for it now!

  4. beoriginal

    Posted by beoriginal on August 7, 2014 at 17:36

    And another thing you need to take into consideration. The man is suppose to be the leader and the pursuer. I think by asking out the guy would just let him take a little step back when he should be the one “in charge”, by no means controlling. Also I agree with her, you should save yourself for your husband in all ways possible. I’m 15 about to be 16 I have only had one boyfriend and I truly regret it. Just be careful don’t ever settle for less.

  5. Publicpassion

    Posted by Publicpassion on August 6, 2014 at 20:27

    I’m so so shy. How can I talk to guys?

    • goatwrangler

      Posted by goatwrangler on August 7, 2014 at 11:27

      Remember that they’re people. They aren’t all THAT different. Try to ignore gender and the “he blinked twice — does that mean he wants kiss me?” thing. Just remember that he’s a person, and find out his interests and all that happy stuff. There you go. Romance comes after the normal human friendship.