- The Art of Manliness - http://www.artofmanliness.com -

Dating Advice from 1944: How to Pick Your Right Girl

For $.98 cents you too can unlock the mystery of getting along with girls.

In one of the old men’s magazines I have in my collection, I spotted an ad for a book called How to Get Along with Girls. Curious on what sort of dating advice was dispensed in 1944 when the book was published, I wanted to get my hands on it.  The ad said all I needed to do was send in .98 cents and the secrets of getting along with girls would be mine. What a deal! Unfortunately, after further research, I found that the publisher no longer exists, so I had no place to send my pocket change. Drat!

Undeterred, I went to eBay to see if any of the original copies still existed. Lucky for me I found one for just $5.00. It arrived in the mail a few days ago, and I’ve enjoyed thumbing through it, chuckling at some of the advice that clearly needs to stay in 1944. But, overall, How to Get Along with Girls offers some pretty solid and timeless dating advice for men.

So I thought it would be fun (and perhaps useful) to share some of the book’s advice with you all from time to time.  The first excerpt comes from a chapter called “How to Pick Your Right Girl.” It’s reminiscent of the post we published back in 2008 called How Do You Know When She’s the One? [1] and is all about figuring out whether you’re in a relationship with the right gal. Enjoy.

How to Pick Your Right Girl

“Keep your eyes wide open before marriage; half closed afterwards.”

Sooner or later, if you are “stuck” on a girl, you arrive at the crucial indecision, “Is she the right girl for me? Shall I marry her?”

Yours is an unbelievable lot, brother. You are required to decide for the rest of your life, at a time when you are bereft of reason. You are required to be impartial about the object of your love, when love prejudices you in her favor. Unfortunately, such is the cockeyed nature of things that every marrying man gets into this predicament.

What you seek in a wife is strictly your business. To rephrase the old proverb: one man’s wife is another man’s poison. But it is only fair to warn you that what you desire may not coincide with what you require. You may have no idea of what is good for you. Perhaps you need a woman to bolster your ego, but are masochist enough to “go” for a girl who slaps you down every time. Haven’t you seen that happen? Or you may need a girl to slap you down, but egoist that you are, you “go” only for “fluff” that flatters your vanity.

Before you make the momentous decision, you would do well to ponder the questions in this chapter. Obviously, you will not be objective; but it is of the utmost importance that you make the effort. To compensate for your prejudice, be extra hard in judging her.

Any other questions a man pondering marriage should consider before making the plunge? Specifically, are there questions a man should ask in 2012 that a man might not have asked himself in 1944? Share them with us in the comments!