In that context, living with the desires I've just described, how likely do you think it is that over the course of two or three or four years — some couples date over most of their college years — you will be able to maintain enough emotional discipline and distance to avoid acting emotionally and relationally "married"?

I've spoken to numerous "long-dating" couples, in college and beyond, who other than living together, could do little to intertwine their lives any more than they already are.

Can this level of emotional intimacy happen between people who have been dating for a shorter amount of time? But the longer a couple dates, the harder it becomes to avoid it.

If you've forgotten the cardinal rule of engagement, re-read "Tips for Engagement." Engagement is a great thing, but it's not marriage. Choice two is to stay in school and put the relationship on hold. Wait until a responsible time to start the relationship back up.

It may, as a practical matter, necessitate addressing issues and being a bit more intimate than they were before, but the simple fact is that couples break up even after engagement. By the way, more than one set of Christian parents have relented on this question in the face of If you’ve enjoyed this article, will you consider giving a tax-deductible gift to Boundless right now?

We might even say that getting to know one another better and more deeply is (up to a certain limited point, of course) the very of a dating relationship.

When two people are dating — especially when it's going well and two people are really into one another — the desire to spend more and more time together, to know each other better and better, to confide in each other more and more often and exclusively, is overwhelming.

Your fiancé is not your spouse until the wedding is over. We’re a donor-funded ministry, and we rely on friends like you to help keep us going!

In the meantime, the "we're already committed" rationalization tends to make couples feel free to act in all sorts of ways they didn't before, and every argument I've made in this series applies ), but that doesn't mean that anyone who uses that language is automatically correct.

Bible Verses About Relationships - Your relationship with God is vital to your Christian walk, but your dating life, the health of your marriage, and your family relationships also reflect on your personal walk with the Lord.

PART 6: Growing in Intimacy » In matters of dating or courtship, I generally recommend that people either get married or break up within a year or so of beginning a dating relationship.

It's still really easy to "act married" emotionally, even in a long-distance relationship.

As to physical intimacy, many long-distance couples have told me that because they are not physically close to one another as often, they actually experience Um, no. Be deliberate about avoiding "marital" levels of intimacy.

Certainly, as God's people, we don't want to live in fear and have our lives be primarily defined by avoiding temptation rather than positively seeking after Christ. Still, where particular known areas of temptation exist, it's not living in fear to be deliberate about taking the wiser course.