Thursday, July 13, 2006

Dating & Ethics

Here's the scenario: A couple has been officially dating for a while, none of that "I didn't know we were exclusive" stuff. A while later, she decides to go on a date with a third party, just to see how she feels about the relationship. (I'm using the girl as an example because guys are usually the ones to ask girls out, the importance of which will be shown shortly). The clincher? She doesn't tell her boyfriend or the guy she's using for the one date.


Assuming you believe that she can do this, without telling her boyfriend, I find it very troubling. Essentially she's going out on a date with a guy under false pretenses. On some level she's really stealing his time and money. With no hope of anything coming out of it. The date is to see how she feels about her relationship with her boyfriend, not to begin a relationship with someone new.

But what if he asks her out? Even so, he's assuming she is single. If the girl was married and some guy asked her out, would it be ok to say yes just because he asked? Far from it. By agreeing to go out, she intentionally misleads the guy into thinking she's available (this is why I used a girl as the example, it seems easier to understand that a guy asking out a girl is projecting that he's single and available than a girl who is going out on a date).

I know of people who have done this, and I just think its wrong. If you're having problems with your relationship or have questions, deal with them in a mature way. Its rather egotistical to think that your time, needs, and questions are important enough as to justify wasting someone else's time. Not to mention lying to them.

Surely people will advance other justifications, that its been done before is probably the most common. Just because something has been done before and will be done in the future doesn't make it morally or ethically correct. It just means you're abdicating your responsibility to think to whatever society deems correct. Do you really want to do that?