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Joined: 3/29/2014
Msg: 1
What is courtship?Page 1 of 5    (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)
Merriam-webster defines courtship as:

1 : the activities that occur when people are developing a romantic relationship that could lead to marriage or the period of time when such activities occur

What “activities” do YOU do when you are attempting to court someone (even if you wouldn’t use the word “court” or “courtship”)? There are a few posters who claim they’ve never had a romantic relationship so they may have no personal courtship activities to relate. But the vast majority of posters have had at least one longterm romantic relationship (married or not) so they’ve been through a “courtship” period. The purpose of this thread is to stick to your own personal experience, not hearsay about what did or didn’t work for someone else.

There is another thread that started off about learning the ‘art’ of courtship but the OP also muddied the waters by mixing in (and has a personal history of posts) claiming men have to “pay to play”, i.e. “courtship” = pay. That thread is about 30+ pages now focused on only the narrow topic of who pays with the usual suspects throwing in the usual red herring that only men with perfect looks, dress, and financials get to ‘court’ (i.e. pay) for time with women.

From the definition, “courtship” activities happen over some time, not just the first meet, first date, or first handful of dates. So let’s just skip the tired ole who pays for the first date or first few dates.

I guess I’m trying to open a positive thread – relate activities from your personal experience from a time that you willingly, maybe even joyfully, took action to nurture and encourage a developing romantic relationship.
Joined: 12/5/2015
Msg: 2
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 7:32:58 AM
Most people seem to define courtship as solely and exclusively a male responsibility.

A woman need do nothing. .just be there..

smile and accept gifts, meals, whatever..generously waste her time with some guy and judge him as to whether he leaps through enough hoops and bends over backwards enough to justify her gracing him with her presence. .
Joined: 3/29/2014
Msg: 3
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 7:36:35 AM

A woman need do nothing. .just be there..

smile and accept gifts, meals, whatever..generously waste her time with some guy and judge him as to whether he leaps through enough hoops and bends over backwards enough to justify her gracing him with her presence. .

You are not a woman so this is not your personal experience. These are not the activities YOU engage in as courtship activities.

What do YOU do?
Joined: 9/15/2015
Msg: 4
view profile
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 7:42:42 AM
I spent a lot of time exercising, not only general exercise but exercise specific to part of the courting phase.

Kegels | Plank Pose | Stability-Ball Crunches | Lying Leg Raises | Push-Ups |
Interval Training | Stability-Ball Bench Press | Squats | Stationary Lunges |
Upward-Facing Dog | Seated Straddle Stretch | Reclined Butterfly Pose |Twisting Forward Bend |

I used to do the breaststroke as it is is particularly helpful in strengthening the pelvic floor muscles. Now I do more ab crunches, I used to do a lot of leg raises, touching my toes to the floor in back of my head, I think I need to get back to doing those..

I started this way before the Internet, so I had developed my own system of exercise, but now you can google them though it's fairly similar to what I had devised.

You may think I am joking, but I really have focused my exercise with this in mind.
Joined: 9/20/2015
Msg: 5
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 8:06:42 AM
Very nice thread Ms. Cynthia. :)

When my late husband and I were "courting" we would express our desire to be together through music and words. We lived a few hours apart so letters, cards and mix tapes were our means of wooing one another when we were apart. I particularly loved the little notes I would find in odd places in my apartment or car after a weekend spent together. And I still have most of them today. :D
Joined: 7/3/2015
Msg: 6
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 8:07:59 AM

What “activities” do YOU do when you are attempting to court someone (even if you wouldn’t use the word “court” or “courtship”)?

When I'm interested, it doesn't pain me to act interested. I make time for them... in person and on the phone... do what they want to do, even if it's new to me... have them do what I want to do with me, even if it's new to them... get to know them... meet their friends and family... put my best foot forward... the usual. Most importantly, allow them in my life.
Joined: 5/7/2005
Msg: 7
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 8:26:27 AM
In all honesty,(and more than likely one of my major "problems") I've never actually "attempted to court". At least knowingly. I have, in the past, hung around women, doing "stuff" that we had both found enjoyable/pleasurable. While doing this stuff, I have gotten to know these women a little better than when I first met them. This knowledge determined if I hung around and did more "stuff" with them, or not.

My ex used to complain that I(we) didn't keep doing what we first were doing when getting to know each other. I blame that on my new found knowledge that she was an alcoholic.
Joined: 9/10/2011
Msg: 8
view profile
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 8:38:31 AM

Most people seem to define courtship as solely and exclusively a male responsibility.

I agree with that statement.

A woman need do nothing. .just be there..

smile and accept gifts, meals, whatever..generously waste her time with some guy and judge him as to whether he leaps through enough hoops and bends over backwards enough to justify her gracing him with her presence.

And that sums it all up in a nutshell.
Joined: 9/15/2015
Msg: 9
view profile
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 9:15:38 AM
I don't really think of what I do while dating as courting.

I often get pleasure out of seeing other people happy, so if she is having a good time, it's good for me.

I ask a lot of questions, listen to every thing they say, and try and pick activities I know I enjoy which my date should find interesting, fun or out of her box. But not too far out, not everyone can adapt to the exotic.

If I buy a gift, I try and make it either personalized or something she needs but can't get. I look for gifts that keep on giving, meaning something more lasting that will get used or worn often, I think this helps to remind her of me. I don't do it for that reason, but I think it works out that way.

Little unexpected things are nice. Like when together in a mall, if I see a blouse that I think will look very good on her, I ask her to try it on. Especially it it isn't something she would normally buy. For instance, women that feel chubby often buy black, I would suggest trying on a lot of color.

Several times I have suggested I will buy whatever clothes / shoes for myself they pick out and they think will look good on me, regardless of what I think. Most women like to shop, they often have a good sense of style, and by wearing the clothes they pick, it helps build a bond. It can be fun shopping together. And often I have really liked what they selected.

If my date is into something I have never done, I am up for giving it a try. I pretty much in the middle of most personality tests, so playing a card game or going out dancing is equally enjoyable. I even spent 5 hours looking at bolts of fabrics, which after a few hours got boring. She bought fabrics for clothes she designed. But now I do know a little more about fabrics.

In the beginnings of a relationship, I pretty much go with the flow, try to use intuition to determine what she is into.

One negative I think, women don't often know me well or what I really enjoy, since it seems like I enjoy most things they like. And I do at first, but not as a constant activity.

I am told I am a bit unpreditable, since I often do what strikes me at the time. If someone is a planner,it makes them uncomfortable to deviate from their plans, or to be spontaneous.

I don't really know what is courtship for most people.
Joined: 1/27/2016
Msg: 10
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 9:32:06 AM

A woman need do nothing. .just be there..

smile and accept gifts, meals, whatever..generously waste her time with some guy and judge him as to whether he leaps through enough hoops and bends over backwards enough to justify her gracing him with her presence.

And that sums it all up in a nutshell.

Wow....that's a pretty pessimistic approach to have.

Isn't the reason you asked her out in the first place because she interested you? Aren't your ultimate goals to have her give you attention? To show an interest in you? Affection? To see if she has a equitable interest in possibly pursuing the relationship further?

I don't understand the purpose of pursuing if all you do is find reasons not to catch. If you have no desire to catch then why spend time complaining about the hunt. ymmv
Joined: 12/3/2015
Msg: 11
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 9:50:58 AM
I think this has been discussed from the male point of view in another thread, but I like this thread.
To the guys that say that women don't have to do anything, they are wrong. The problem is that men are simple minded creatures that many times only understand the physical world, are unable to read between the lines and understand code, particularly the code that women emanate. What makes this even more frustrating to men is that many times women emit this code without knowing that they are emitting this code.

I've seen it many times where a woman has a particular dislike for a guy and teases him, only to later on the two of them find themselves in the same bed doing the money dance. Courtship starts with non-verbal communication. The first things that happens is eye contact. A woman at a bar, or an event of some kind, scouts the room, she makes eye contact. When she sees something she likes, she looks at that person, again and again, until that person makes eye contact back. Many times, she does not want to be discovered, so she looks away, only to look in the direction of the guy again when he is not looking. If the guy has any kind of radar, he would acknowledge this. Most guys are total idiots and are completely unaware of this.

A lot is communicated back and forth. I once saw an incredibly gorgeous woman with two little kits at the deli counter of the grocery store. She made eye contact, but then became reserved, so I talked to her. She may have found me interesting, but she immediately, in a polite way let me know that she was not interested in anything other than being a good neighbor at the grocery store. I talked her some casual question about making sandwiches and cuts of ham, she smiled and told me that Her and HER HUSBAND liked preparing blah, blah. I got the point, continued to smile and talk, but not pursuing any further.

In a different situation, in the parking lot of a trail the woman asked me about what type of cycling shoes would be better for her. We talked, I made some recommendation. Went back to changing, she came to me and gave me her phone number. We went out on a few dates.

Once you're on a date, courtship is about finding a comfort zone inside each other's personal bubble. Until the two people can do that, nothing else is going to happen. Period. This is the mistake that many guys make when they go for the kiss and the women rejects them. If it came out of the blue, total rejection. Then you have the corn dog guys that start to touch and touch and touch the woman until she just wants to smack the idiot across the face. Courtship is a dialogue, it requires reciprocation. The man does a gesture, he pulls back, the woman does a gesture, pulls back and so on and so forth until they are in the same page desiring to rip the clothes off each other.

Another very important part of courtship is that verbal communication. It's all about creating trust, and to make sure that the stories that they convey are congruent with their sense of lifestyle and belief system. If that belief system is not congruent, red flags will ring and all the passionate energy dies. Take for instance, on a date a woman asked me if I had a parole officer. It freaked me out. Really. If she had asked what was my favorite college football team, or what school did I go to it would have not been a problem. A red flag went up, and later on it told me things about her and the type of men she had associated with in the past, and I did not want any part of it. Same thing, when a guy talks about his exes, or the conversation moves to how did it end. And one or the other may say, well, that they cheated, or in a polite way they say, they became distant and met someone ELSE.

Then there's the courtship after the relationship starts. This is the most difficult type because many other factors are involved. I have seduced my girlfriend by simply washing the dishes, cleaning the kitchen and let her sleep while she had a headache. I think the biggest mistake that couples make is that they start to take that other person for granted and things begin to slide. So it's important to keep the courtship alive and to both be active doing it.
Joined: 9/9/2015
Msg: 12
view profile
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 9:56:32 AM

I think the biggest mistake that couples make is that they start to take that other person for granted and things begin to slide. So it's important to keep the courtship alive and to both be active doing it.

This is all you really needed to say.
Joined: 6/11/2014
Msg: 13
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 10:55:03 AM
^^^ but then we wouldn't have " corn dog guys" LOL, Carnies?
I've never eaten a corn dog btw
Joined: 11/17/2014
Msg: 14
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 11:04:13 AM
I sent my girl a dirty sweatshirt, 3 bags of her favorite double chocolate chip cookies, and a damnit doll for v day.
Didn't get anything on beer and a bj day:(
Joined: 6/11/2015
Msg: 15
view profile
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 11:46:03 AM

From the definition, “courtship” activities happen over some time, not just the first meet, first date, or first handful of dates. .

If we're going by that definition, then courtship only applies to those looking for Long Term. So a guy doesn't have to court a gal if they aren't necessarily looking for an LTR?

So let’s just skip the tired ole who pays for the first date or first few dates.

I think the issue & difference of view is about the view that it's more a 1-way street of the guy having to court the girl -- to "win her over". Hence, the paying stuff (+ women historically not generating money on their own). But that's just a reflection of the Roles in "traditional courtship", not that courtship purely = guy pays. The man leads, the gal follows (or suggests something different and he leads her on something they both like). The guy's a contestant, the woman's the panel of judges. I think that's where courtship stems from.

I think that's why people hate PUA stuff (even putting aside chauvinistic writings). Much of it changes the frame of the situation where the guy Isn't the contestant, but a judge himself. Just that Alone will upset those who cherish courtship, because many see courtship as the guy shows/proves himself to the gal. You'll far less often hear, if at all, a gal say "So when I was courting your father, back in college..." VS "So when I was courting your mother, back in college..." :)

That said, I think modern-day 1-way-ish courting usually only lasts until they've become an item, not a serious relationship. Once an item of sorts, the guy's not in position to prove/court himself to her as much. In fact, sometimes it can be the girl leads, and the guy follows ("pvzzy-whipped") after things settled in.
Joined: 2/11/2016
Msg: 16
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 11:59:17 AM

You are not a woman so this is not your personal experience. These are not the acitivites YOU engage in as courtship activities. -- CynthiaSM

Well said, Cynthia.

There are people around here who are masters of distraction and deflection, and who make comments about literally nothing in a bid to somehow passively attack the original poster. They come across as bitter and disillusioned, so they take it out on the person through Sarcasm and Cyncism. These are the new currency today. Originality, Thoughtfulness and Insight are no longer of much value. Their worth has declined over the years.

Best wishes to you, Cynthia.

- Peter
Joined: 2/11/2016
Msg: 17
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 12:19:33 PM

Wow. That's a pretty pessimistic approach to have. -- crook catcher

There is a great deal of Pessimism around here, and Sarcasm. They are, as I said earlier, the new currency in the communication field. I read several threads on here this morning, on entirely different subjecgts, and I am truly astonished by the negativity thrown at the original poster simply for asking a question.

Best wishes

- Peter
Joined: 2/14/2010
Msg: 18
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 12:25:09 PM
The whole idea of courtship (instead of dating) starts off in childhood, where children are exposed to fairy tales about the handsome prince looking for a woman who will be his future wife and bare heirs to the throne. And of course, the prince/future king is extremely wealthy and the women are usually penniless peasants, so it's natural that the prince will cover all courting expenses. And it always turns out to be a perfect match. Unfortunately, there seems to be a lot of people who have blurred the line between fairy tale fantasy and real life,. and can't understand why real life is not playing out like a fairy tale at all times.
Joined: 12/18/2015
Msg: 19
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 12:36:20 PM
I was watching one of those buy a weeding dress shows last week. All the happy brides to be. One woman was shopping with her two daughters, aged about 10 and 14, all happy and looking for a wedding dress. The woman wanted to be all "bridal" like she had been at her first marriage. At the end the woman said, "I found the perfect dress to marry my best friend and soul mate." I kind of smiled and thought, I'm sure she said that about her 1st husband. And probably will say it about her 3rd husband.

It's not so much the courtship. It's about the relationship. It's not so much how you got it but how you maintain it, nurture it, watch it grow, care for it and protect it.
Joined: 7/31/2011
Msg: 20
view profile
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 12:40:39 PM
The whole idea of courtship (instead of dating) starts off in childhood

I agree, courtship does start in childhood. With the loving attentive gaze of a parent, the attunement between parent child, knowing the other, making them feel special, comforting them in their struggles.

My idea of a relationship involves the capacity to listen, be attentive, discover their interests/pleasures and have the capacity to comfort them. In other words, courtship is learning how to be attuned and engaged with the uniqueness of the person. There is a delight and pleasure in giving.
Joined: 12/24/2015
Msg: 21
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 12:57:14 PM
I find the concept of "courting" to be confusing. It sounds like trying to gain favor with someone through artificial means. I'd rather do nice things for someone because I want them to feel good, and vice versa; otherwise it just feels like bribery. Kind of like "I'm going to be nice for the purpose of winning this person."
Joined: 6/16/2007
Msg: 22
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 1:24:48 PM
can the "Act of courting" and the "act of pursuing" be similar? it sounds a bit like courting is designed for one person to show another that they are the most interesting person. that the first person can't "play the field" b/c the field sucks in comparison to person number two. courting seems like sometimes it might be the act of pursuing someone of immense interest.
Joined: 12/5/2015
Msg: 23
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 1:27:30 PM

What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 1233 PM

Wow. That's a pretty pessimistic approach to have. -- crook catcher

There is a great deal of Pessimism around here, and Sarcasm

and..virulent,frothing at the mouth racism..form a Scot who forced himself into NZ society..
Joined: 2/12/2016
Msg: 24
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 2:13:31 PM
R. Don Steele, the author of "Body Language Secrets: A Guide During Courtship and Dating" says: The essence of courtship and dating conversations is to communicate, with and without words, “This is who I am. I like myself. I hope you like me. Show and tell me about yourself so I can discover if I like you.”

A good read, I'd recommend it highly to many of the forumites ;0D

IMO, courtship is an act of nature, that is any species, the male mating ritual that culminates in the male copulating the female.

Mother Nature does not lie!

Like that strong sensitive type?
If you missed the Super Bowl and all those SUV ads, the term "male display" might have little meaning. But ecologists and evolutionists say these displays are designed to seduce a female for mating purposes.
Translated, displays help pass along the genes.

Seems to us that only the seagull or gorilla or barfly that is the lucky target of the male display can know the exact message. But in general, male displays include:

I've got energy to help raise the young 'uns.

None of the other guys would dare mess with me -- or my kids.

I'm a man (or one spanking fine bird).

I've got dynamite genes.

I'm healthy.

Male displays often involve a tad of male-bashing -- as mule deer crash heads or walruses whonk tusks. But like guys duking it out in a roadhouse parking lot, the displays can get a bit intimidating to the ladies who are their supposed beneficiaries.

You don't have to be a feminist (although it might help) to wonder: Is this what the ladies really want? Or do aggressive mating displays frighten the females instead of impressing them?

The question reflects a change in focus of evolutionary theory. Until recently, biologists who studied mating behavior focused on males. Lately, they've begun to wonder about "female choice." Are the ladies actively choosing males during courtship? If so, what do they make of male behavior?
Take a bow, bowerbird
University of Maryland biology doctoral student Gail Patricelli has taken this question one step further in her study of the bizarre courting behavior of the satin bowerbird. People who watched Ptilonorhynchus violaceus have begun to wonder about a really ridiculous question: Does female behavior influence male behavior during courtship?

In other words, do the two sexes communicate at this crucial moment?

We'll get back to that heretical notion shortly. First, we need to backtrack for some background.

Shiny blue-black bird standing near tree, resembling a crow.Male Satin Bowerbird.Courtesy (c) Grover Larkin.

If you're into animal courtship, you probably know the little bowerbird, a native of Australia and New Guinea. The males build elaborate "bowers," or courting courtyards, which Patricelli describes as "a two-walled stick structure with a platform, decorated with different colored objects."

But not just any color, she adds. "Bright blue is a favorite color for satin bowerbirds. They'll use parrot feathers, but if people are around they will use pen caps or shotgun shells. My favorite was a baby pacifier."

During mating season, in the spring, the ladies tour the bowers, sizing up the studs by their architectural prowess and by their talent at staging "a dramatic, coordinated display of feather-pulling, extending the wings suddenly, and running accompanied by a loud buzzing vocalization," Patricelli and Gerald Borgia wrote (see "Male Displays..." in the bibliography).

Too much of a good thing?
Gerald Borgia, a University of Maryland biology professor who has studied bowerbirds for 22 years, found that [I]an intense and aggressive display is essential for mating success. He says most males do not score, but the winners get multiple partners, and the chance to pass their genes to the next generation. "One very successful male who had a good bower mated with 25 females over one 2-month mating period," said Borgia. "The sexiest guys get all the mates."

But what is sexy? Patricelli says females may be startled (looking like a 7-year-old who's seen a ghost) when the guy gets too hot and heavy. That's logical, since the mating dance resembles what the male uses to intimidate other dudes at feeding sites.

That, says Patricelli, cuts into the romantic effect and damages the guy's chances of scoring.

So with bowerbirds, as with Homo sapiens, smart fellas are cautious fellas during courting. "They need to be very aggressive during courtship, but the female can be threatened," says Patricelli about the birds. "It's a delicate line. They've got to be intense, but if they're too intense at the wrong time, it can scare her off."

(Sound familiar, guys?)

In other words, females can get frightened when the bowerbird goes overbird -- we mean overboard.

movie image of male strutting in front of robotic decoyThis 596k movie shows the male satin bowerbird trying to mate with the decoy robotic female.
Courtesy University of Maryland.

Fembot Schlembot
To test whether successful guys -- the ones that can convince females to mate -- are taking cues from the gals, Patricelli and Borgia collaborated with Gregory Walsh, a mechanical engineer at Maryland, to build a robot female that could dance, weave and crouch like a real, live female. Once the robotic "guts" arrived in Australia, Patricelli dressed it in a real bowerbird feather suit.

Call it robotic taxidermy in the service of science. Over at Borgia's lab, they call it "fembot."


The ability to crouch is critical because it's how females signal that they are comfortable with the intense, aggressive displays. The fembots were so realistic, said Walsh, that two male bowerbirds fought for the right to mate with a fembot (if that is not against the law in Australia, it ought to be).

By testing males with robotic females, Patricelli and her co-authors were able to show that the most successful males were those that gave highly intense displays without threatening females, and that they succeed in mating by modulating their displays in response to female crouching signals. "The most attractive males are those that have it [the heavy display] and know how to use it," says Patricelli.

Gold and green female in grass. Brilliant blue eye visible with bird standing in profile.Female Satin Bowerbird.
Courtesy (c)Grover Larkin.

Communication: The key to true love?
Before you start picturing male bowerbirds as paragons of peace who soothe females by cooing the avian equivalent of "Thank you for sharing that...", remember that the guys are nasty to their buddies. During the two-month mating season, Patricelli says, the males "defend against rival males, destroy each others bowers, steal decorations...."

Far from "love thy neighbor," we're thinking, "Blast that bloke, Bud!"

Nor are these ideal mates from the female's point of view. For all the effort male bowerbirds pay to attracting females, they pull an immediate fade-out after scoring. Males, says Patricelli, "don't provide any parental care, so they can dedicate themselves entirely to mating."

Ladies: Remind you of anyone you know?
Joined: 2/11/2016
Msg: 25
What is courtship?
Posted: 2/20/2016 2:24:25 PM
Racism, eh? You just can’t stop calling people by that name, can you? It’s your warcry. Everyone is a racist, except you.

As for ‘forcing’ myself into New Zealand society, you should be careful what you say to people. I have been here for 25 years. I became a New Zealand citizen in 1995. I worked for the Department of Justice as a court stenographer, with glowing references from Judges and other court staff. I’ve given a lot to this country, and I don’t need someone like you to slander me because you don’t like to be shown up in a bad light.

Your posts, at first blush, are drooling with negativity and personal attacks, but there is more to it than meets the eye. You simply have nothing better to do than try to make other people feel bad because of the state you are in. Let’s take a look at some of your comments, the things you say, your ‘contributions’:

A woman need do nothing. . just be there. Smile and accept gifts, meals, whatever..generously waste her time with some guy and judge him as to whether he leaps through enough hoops and bends over backwards enough to justify her gracing him with her presence.

That, in my view, is shocking. You don’t give women a chance right from the get-go, do you, mate?

Be nice to have teaties I guess..avoid getting tickets from at least male cops.. even if driving like an idiot..stuff paid for. Maybe why Bruch Jenner changed to Caitlyn, dating must be much cheaper. Warmly awaiting your angry caustic comments, ray of sunshine.

Again, there is something seriously flawed about your ideas of women in general.

And this, whatever it means:

What SHE says anyway..realizes what a using beeyotch she comes across as..perhaps a lie to sound better? Wow, how big of her..still milked the silly simps when she was in "dating"/freeloading mode..laughs at them..LOL.

And here you are attacking people, again women, women, for their appearance:

Wow, she isn't even remotely "hot" entitled..lot of simps in NYC it appears. Did one guy punch her in the nose or is it naturally weird like that?

And this:

think some women rather severely overestimate their attractions..but there's someone for everyone. I assume there are perhaps enough guys who will suck up & kiss the ground she walks on..pucker up for dat butt.

You definitely seem to have it it for women – and of course, me.

Anything else? C’mon, you must have thought of another name for me apart from racist? How about sexist? Or ageist? Or that new beauty, Islamophobe? You, of course, are above all that and live in the Land of Non-Judgementalism, as we can see from your posts.

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