Modern dating may be tricky to navigate, but it’s a walk in the park compared to what it was like in the 1930s. The advice handed out back then seems really old-fashioned and pretty much impossible to live up to. Yep, these 1930s dating tips – from women being told to hide their hobbies to men being expected to be rich and own a car – really do feel as though they’re from another world.
Don’t get drunk
Drinking too much alcohol on a date was a serious sin, according to a 1938 issue of the magazine Click Photo-Parade. And while the article suggested some women come across as intelligent after a couple of drinks, it also claimed that most “get silly.” The writer sagely advised their female readership, “The last straw is to pass out from too much liquor. Chances are your date will never call you again!”
Have your mom send you flowers
Apparently, you needed to appear popular to secure a date. That was the advice doled out to freshmen in a 1938 article in Mademoiselle. “During your first term, get home talent to ply you with letters, telegrams, and invitations. College men will think, ‘She must be attractive if she can rate all that attention.’” Um, we suppose that makes a little sense...
Stay quiet on the dance floor
Author Dorothy Dix sternly suggested women refrain from chatting too much, or – even worse – talking about themselves. But Click Photo-Parade was even more specific with its advice. Apparently, women should make especially sure to remain silent on the dance floor, as “when a man dances, he wants to dance.”
Don’t show your emotions
These dating articles from the 1930s make it seem as if men enjoyed dating emotionless robots. This isn’t true, of course, but it didn’t stop women from being strongly encouraged to hide their feelings. According to Click Photo-Parade, “Men don’t like tears, especially in public places.” Dix echoed that sentiment in her book How to Win and Hold a Husband, writing, “Men do not like sentimental women.”