TOP 5 DATING TRADITIONS TO KEEP:
1. Being the Initiator
"At first, you've got to be the one to show the effort," says relationship counselor Karen Sherman, Ph.D., author of Marriage Magic! Find It, Keep It, Make It Last. Women want the romance of knowing that they're sought after. So go out of your way. Pick her up. Choose the place. You don't have to be the one always planning where you go and what you do, but showing motivation up front gives her confidence off the bat, too.
2. Holding the Door
For her — or anyone. "It's a tradition because it's respectful and polite," says relationship expert Seth Meyers, author of Dr. Seth's Love Prescription. And chivalry is something we need to bring back. If opening the car door is convenient, do it, but remember: "You shouldn't start behaviors early in the relationship that you probably won't keep up years into the relationship," Meyers adds.
3. Calling Her Up for a Date
"Texting is out of the question," says Steve Santagati, author of Code Of Honor. A woman who lets you text her to ask her out is the easiest girl out there, he adds. If you're truly interested, a short call is the best way to show it, Meyers says. "Too much texting borders on a mix of ADHD and co-dependence. Keep your impulses to stay over-connected in check."
4. Waiting for Sex
It can actually make you happier. A new study in the Journal of Sex Research of 11,000 coupled-up people found that those who waited more than a few weeks to have sex were happier in their relationship than those who hit the sheets early on. Another reason to wait: "If you feel like you've already won after the first date, you might not ask her out again — even if you really liked her," says Santagati.
5. Don't Shack Up Just Yet
Research says that when couples live together and then slide into getting married (perhaps thinking, "Well, we're already living together, so we might as well tie the knot"), they wind up unhappier than those who have an intention to get married, and then decide they should move in. "It may be a little bit more formal, but it's probably a better recipe for a successful marriage," Sherman adds
5 DATING TRADITIONS TO DROP:
1. The 3-Day Rule
"Get rid of the stupid phone rules," says Santagati. They're completely outdated and irrelevant in the age of tweets, text messages, and status updates. The new rule: Call her when you feel like it. (But maybe not the night of your first date.) "It doesn't mean you're desperate, or acting on fear," Santagati says. It means you're confident and know what you want.
2. You Always Pay
You should be the one to pay for the first few dates, but down the line it's not a requirement, says Santagati. "No matter your view on this one, see if she offers," Meyers suggests. "The woman who offers to pay — regardless of whether you let her — is a keeper. It sends the message that she's independent," Meyers says.
3. The Dinner Date
"We need to throw out the conventional lunch/dinner/coffee date right now," says Santagati. Why? It's formal and boring. The first date should be casual and wholesome. "It forces you to get to know her instead of staring at her body the whole time," he says. Check your local Groupons, meet her at a thrift shop, go on a bike ride, or hike a local mountain — do something that's a little off. It'll be different for both of you and you'll be able to see how spontaneous she is.
4. Not Talking About Money
Maybe you should get a prenup, maybe not. "Either way, you need to talk about money up front and honestly before you enter a serious long-term relationship," says Santagati. Preparing for a future with someone and leaving out the plan for how you're going to fund it is simply irresponsible.
5. Asking Her Father for Her Hand
OK, so this one's touchy. "If you know it means a lot to her, then do it because it makes her happy," says Santagati. (After all, that's what you care about, right?) But the bottom line is that asking her father's permission is "perfunctory at best," he says. "The tradition is steeped in ancient gender stereotypes and sets a modern couple back, not forward," Meyers adds.
From Men's Health