Another word for fear of dating
The social rules for dating change from one generation to the next.
There was a time when a proper young man and woman could not speak to each other unless they had been formally introduced. On the other hand, I understand from my patients that it is considered bad manners now for young people to date someone who has previously dated one of their friends.
The women reported to me that they did not feel threatened—although they were very likely to report that they felt disappointed. Most of the precautions I thought were important were against being stuck for a whole evening with a boring date.
I especially recommended arranging to meet for the first time only for coffee or a drink.
The second problem in responding to these advertisements was that some people thought doing so implied that they were desperate.
(See my reaction reported above.) No one wants to seem desperate.
Spending a couple of hours with someone who was unattractive and unappealing was not too much of a price to pay for the chance to have met someone who might be attractive and appealing.
It was also possible, sometimes, to do something that was entertaining, even with someone who was unattractive and unappealing.
Back in those days—before computers, or portable phones, or, even, electric typewriters—the rules were different.
The lesser problem was the concern that women had that they were endangering themselves meeting strangers about whom they knew very little. Stories circulated about women being lured to their deaths. Consequently, stratagems were developed to make such encounters somewhat safer, that is, refusal by the woman to give her home address, or even her telephone number.
Couples met for the first time in very public places. This was before the time of the “date rape” drugs; but women were especially careful, nevertheless, to drink very little.
(Of course, I go back a long way, to a time when there were streetcars going up and down Broadway.
I could buy a milkshake for a All the telephones were black.) It was common, around that time, for men and women to meet at parties or at dances.