Love Advice: Then + Now

3 old-school love tips, debunked

Some people who have offered us dating advice over the years have been the likes of our mothers, and even grandmothers. While some tips have been appreciated, others seem, well, like they just don’t apply anymore. Here are three retro pieces of love advice and why they don’t necessarily make sense today.

#1: “A lady never calls.”
While it is a no-brainer that we can and should play an equal part as guys in taking initiative when it comes to dating, back in grandma’s day, making the effort was only a man’s job. How tragic! While some women today still prescribe to traditional gender roles (admittedly, they’re not all bad: we’re down with men pulling out chairs and holding open doors), we say grab the bull by the, er, horns and take the first step. Be the one to initiate conversation with that cute guy whose profile caught your eye on a dating site, call back your date from last night and tell him what a wonderful time you had… you’ll be glad you did!

#2: “Always look presentable for your man.”
Back then, your skirt had to be pressed, your lipstick fresh, heels on and that string of pearls aligned in the presence of your man… even at the end of the day when hubby came home from the office. Now, looking pretty and fresh-faced on specific occasions matters: you need to look sharp at that big meeting, gorgeous at a fancy soirée and, yes, dressed appropriately on a hot date. But you should be comfortable enough to dress down in front of your man if you feel like it, especially at the end of a long day that begs for a pair of sweatpants and a warm hoodie!

#3: “Why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free?”
This old adage was thrown around a lot back in the day, forcing to keep women’s sexual appetites from showing. It basically implies that no man will marry you if you have sex with him prior to the wedding night. While some guys nowadays may be the type who may not respect some of the women they sleep with, know that it is not the norm. You can still have a healthy sex life that can lead to a committed relationship, whether marriage is in the cards for you or not. Just know this: whether you choose to wait for marriage, wait until you’re in a stable relationship, or just engage in casual sex, it really isn’t anybody’s business but yours. Don’t let anyone browbeat you into thinking your choice is the wrong one.

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