I was just wondering how my elders here felt about these topics. At what age would you let your child begin dating, does it vary depending on their gender? What is the purpose of dating in your opinion? I never really cared about girls until I was about 15, and my parents did not mind me dating. I went on about three dates before all with the same girl and that has been about it. My parents encouraged it, however, of course every date I went on was met with one of those ackward, embarassing fatherly lectures about sex and responsibility that fathers love to give while alone with you. I hate those. However, I guess my parents know what they are talking about. After all, my mother got pregnant with me at fifteen.
On a larger note, I had a bit of a serious question and since I promised to try and start learning and listening more than arguing, I am asking my elders here for their own personal advice/lnowledge. What is the purpose of marriage? My parents always mention it to me and my mother acts like me getting married is the one moment in my life that she is looking forward to the most. But I really do not even know if I ever want to get married. I enjoy my solitude and freedom, plus, I hate dealing with feminine emotions when I am so emotionally detached. On top of that, I really do not see how marriage benefits the male party at all. If anything, it just seems like I am giving some woman the right to 50% of my stuff and pledging to take care of her for the rest of our lives while she just lives off of my money and potentially divorces me one day and leaves me stuck paying her alimony forever.
Orthonorm is not married and he seems like a pretty cool guy. Why do I need to get married? The only motivation I have to get married is to prevent my mother's heart from getting broken seeing her oldest son a bachelor the rest of his life.
Also, on the rare chance that I do decide to get married, how should I bring my religion into it? Should I or should I not marry outside of Orthodoxy? Keep in mind that I do not plan on having children so the whole what-religion-to-raise-the-child would not apply to us. Finding a marriagable Orthodox woman in America seems pretty hard. Would I be better off just skyping with an Orthodox mail order bride from Greece or Russia and then when I find the one I want just paying for her to come out here? One man at my Church said that women in Greece are desperate for American Orthodox men because of a dowry system or something and that if we made an add we would have hundreds of them trying to contact me. At first I thought he was joking but he was actually being serious.