Here are some ways our idea of a "date" has dramatically varied over the years.As history shows us, dating didn't really exist before the 19th century, at least not in the United States.Indeed, "playing the field" by dating multiple people became more common in this decade, as the liberated women we now know as "flappers" explored sexual boundaries and brought taboos like premarital sex out of the closet.

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Accessibility to the Pill, legal abortion and the rise of feminism made experimentation part of the "getting to know you" process and "Hooking up" is still very much a part of the courtship process, as anyone on Tinder knows, while formal dates do still happen.

But there's a ton of in between; as psychologist Goal Auzeen Saedi, Ph.

And yet traditional dates are held up as a romantic ideal, the kind the older generation desperately wants Millennials to learn (so much so that a Boston College professor ).

There's just one problem: The "classic first date" is bullshit, because there has never been one standard for it. Dating is actually a pretty recent phenomenon, in the grand history of civilization.

Back then, with the goal of finding their child a spouse that could physically help in maintaining the family home or bear children.

In cases where the there was no formal arrangement, children were still expected to choose someone who would be beneficial to the family (think: about the courtship process at the time, "Distance lends to enchantment." Things weren't totally chaste, premarital sex did happen and love wasn't completely irrelevant; but they were all kept on the down-low.

At the end of the evening the lady would look over her options and chose who would be her escort.

She would notify the lucky gentleman by giving him her own card requesting that he escort her home.

Even after being introduced, it was still some time before it was considered appropriate for a man to speak to a lady or for a couple to be seen together.

Once they had been formally introduced, if the gentleman wished to escort the lady home he would present his card to her.

During the Victorian Era (1837-1901), romantic love became viewed as the primary requirement for marriage and courting became even more formal - almost an art form among the upper classes.