6 College Dating Safety Tips

Keep the dating scene sane, safe, and most of all fun with these techniques.

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At Freshman Weeks all across the country, young college students are hearing about how to be safe while dating. Princeton University puts on an annual play called "Sex on a Saturday Night" to encourage discussion on safe dating practices for the incoming freshman class. Saint Marys College of California pushes for awareness of women's issues and safe dating practices around Valentine's Day each year.

You've probably heard some scary, real stories on the news or seen movies like “The Roommate” or “Swimfan” where dating scenarios go horribly wrong. But as a smart, responsible college student, there are some pretty simple ways to keep yourself safe.

Most campuses also have a blue light system, where if you're in an unsafe situation, you can find a blue light (it's an actual blue light) near the busy sidewalks and alert the police or sound an alarm.

1. Stay in Your Comfort Zone

Encourage your date to stick close to where you feel safe. If you only feel safe on campus, stay on campus. Many campuses have cafes or restaurants that would be the perfect place to meet for coffee or have a first date.

Most campuses also have a blue light system, where if you're in an unsafe situation, you can find a blue light (it's an actual blue light) near the busy sidewalks and alert the police or sound an alarm.

2. Use Your Circle of Friends

A great way to meet potential dating partners while feeling secure that they're not going to go crazy is to meet them through people you trust. Your roommate might have a cute brother, or your teammate may have a sister you like. Your friends can vouch for their friends and even give you some pointers on how to make it work.

3. Stay Connected

While on the date, make sure you stay connected to friends or family. The women's advocacy group, The New Agenda, suggests telling someone the 5 W's of your date: who you're going out with, where you’re going, when you'll be back, what you'll be doing, and why you're going out with this person.

4. Set Up a Safety Call or Text

This could be as simple as a friend calling you at a specific time to check in. Or you could set up a word or phrase that indicates if everything is okay or if there's trouble. Make sure someone knows where you're date is taking you and approximately when you'll be back. And as silly as it sounds, make sure you know Campus Safety’s number in case of emergency.

5. Drink Responsibly

If you happen to be going to a bar or party and decide to drink, pace yourself. Dangerous situations are more likely to happen when alcohol is involved. Also, keep an eye on your drink. Date rape drugs are easily slipped into mixed drinks and soda cans, so don't leave your drink lying around.

6. Find Out about Previous Relationships

This is important for both women and men. It may be "taboo" to talk about previous relationships on the first date, but Made Man, a publication designed for men, suggests that everyone learn about their current partner's exes at some point. Not only can this give you valuable information about dangerous ex-partners, but it can also give you clues on how to make your relationship work.

Quick Tips

  • Always fully charge your cell phone before a date. You never want to be caught in a situation where you need to call 911 but you can’t. Guys, this goes for you too!
  • It might be smart to come up with some "ready-made" excuses to avoid unwanted physical contact.
  • Learn some self-defense techniques. RAD, the Rape Aggression Defense program, is popular on many college campuses and may be present on yours. Through them, you would learn many different ways to defend yourself.

People Who Read This Article Also Read:

10 Best Colleges for Dating
5 Best Sites for College Online Dating
College Dating Advice: 6 Signs You're in the Friend Zone
5 Tips for LGBT Dating in College

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