Amish dating practices
If an unattached young man feels drawn to a particular young woman, he will ask her if he can give her a ride home from the singing.If she agrees to it, they will use that time to get to know one another better…especially if they take the long route to her home.This unusual courtship ritual had a standard format.Step one: invite your date home to meet your parents.Step two: watch in horror as your mother ties you up from feet to waist in a heavy sack.Step three: get into your parents’ bed fully clothed next to your date under the watchful eyes of your parents, who place a thick wooden board between you and tuck you in for the night.
It’s a great way to fellowship and to have romance spark between young people.
In the 19th century, Henry Reed Stiles writes in his history of Connecticut that bundling “sapped the fountain of morality and tarnished the escutcheons of thousands of families,” though in Holland, where a similar practice was called “queesting”, it was hardly ever abused.
Contemporary preacher Jonathan Edwards outwardly spoke against bundling as a risky practice teetering on the edge of dangerous promiscuity, writing that this seemingly new sexual awakening of common people would “ruin a person’s reputation and be looked upon as sufficient evidences of a prostitute” had it happened in any other country; he also worried about pregnancies preceding wedlock.
When two teens were interested in one another, if both sets of parents approved, the girl’s parents invited the boy to the home, often on Saturday nights, and bundling process began.
The bundling bag, a readily available, makeshift chastity device, was normally tied around the lower half of the girl’s body, though some accounts claim that each young person was placed into a bundling bag up to their necks, if possible.
The Amish typically get married around 20 to 22 years of age, but how do they find romance inside their conservative culture?