In order to avoid difficulty and temptation, I suggest, again, the following standard. Any dating or pairing off in social contacts should be postponed until at least the age of 16 or older, and even then there should still be much judgment used in selections and in the seriousness...Dating and especially steady dating in the early teens is most hazardous. It distorts the whole picture of life. It deprives you of worthwhile and rich experiences, it limits friendships; it reduces the acquaintances which can be so valuable in selecting a partner for time and eternity. There is definitely a time for the dance, for travel, for associations, for the date, and even for the steady date that will culminate in the romance which will take young people to the holy temple for eternal marriage. But it is the timing that is so vital. It is wrong to do even the right things at the wrong time in the wrong place under the wrong circumstances. Pres. Spencer W. Kimball, President Kimball speaks out on Morality.
You young, single men who hold the priesthood and are dating the splendid young
ladies of the Church have a duty to do everything you can to protect their physical
safety and virtue. The priesthood you hold gives you the greater responsibility
to see that the high moral standards of the Church are always maintained. The
Lord knows that you know better than to approach the edge of sexual enticement.
You will lose part of that which is sacred about you if you go beyond the edge
and abuse the great powers of procreation. Each of us is accountable for his
own actions. How can any of us hope to play a great role in time or eternity
if we have no power of self-control?
Pres James E. Faust, Oct Conf 1995
Even though your children say, "Well, everyone else is going to stay out until one
or two in the morning, and their parents don't care. Why can't I? Don't you trust
me?" let them know that there are some things that, as members of your family, you
simply do not do. Some parents seem to be almost pathologically concerned about their
children's popularity and social acceptance and go along with many things that are really
against their better judgment, such as expensive fads, immodest clothes, late hours,
dating before age sixteen, R-rated movies, and so on. For children and parents, standing
up for what is right may be lonely at times. There may be evenings alone, parties missed,
and movies which go unseen. It may not always be fun. But parenting is not a popularity
Elder Joe J. Christensen, Oct Conf 1993
The seeds of a happy marriage are sown in youth. Happiness does not begin at the altar; it begins during the period of youth and courtship. Spencer W. Kimball, Ensign, feb. 1975
Our Heavenly Father wants you to date young men (and young women) who are faithful members of the church, who will be worthy to take you to the temple and be married the Lord's way. Pres. Ezra Taft Benson, To the YHoung Women of the Church.
Clearly, right marriage begins with right dating...Therefore, this warning comes with great emphasis. Do not take the chance of dating nonmembers, or members who are untrained and faithless. Spencer W. Kimball, The Miracle of Forgiveness, pp 242-2.
Avoid steady dating with a young man prior to the time of his mission call. Pres. Ezra Taft benson.
[Date] with others, in groups, chaperoned when proper, appropriately dressed, cheerfully, coourteously, modestly, wisely, prayerfully. And let parents know where you are, with whom, doing what, and when you will return. Elder Marion D. Hanks
Choose your friends carefully. Associate with young men and young women who
are straight and who will assist you to be responsible. Help your friends decide
to go on missions, to attend Church meetings, and to enjoy righteous activities.
You who are sixteen and older and are dating, make sure the girls you date are
just as good when you return them to their homes as when you picked them up.
Elder Hugh Pinnock, Oct 1993
Begin to prepare for a temple marriage. Proper dating is a part of that preparation. In cultures where dating is appropriate, do not date until you are sixteen years old. Not all teenagers need to date or even want to. When you begin dating, go in groups or on double dates. Make sure your parents meet and become acquainted with those you date. Because dating is a preparation for marriage, date only those who have high standards. Be careful to go to places where there is a good environment, where you won't be traced with temptation.
President Thomas S. Monson (October 1990)
You young men who hold the Aaronic Priesthood need to know that you cannot achieve your
potential without the influence of good women, particularly your mother and, in a few
years, a good wife. But it is too soon for you deacons and teachers to think seriously
about dating. Dating, along with temple marriage, will come at the appropriate season in
your life. You have to be elders to go to the temple.
President Thomas S. Monson (October 1990)
On the other hand, I urge you children to be patient with your parents. If they seem to
be out of touch on such vital issues as dating, clothing styles, modern music, and use of
family cars, listen to them anyway. They have the experience that you lack. Very few, if
any, of the challenges and temptations you face are new to them. If you think they know
nothing about the vital issues I just mentioned, take a good look at their high school and
college yearbooks. Most important, they love you and will do anything they can to help you
be truly happy.
Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin, April Conf 1987