Why do people date? 

This is a common question people have and for a good reason. 

Before considering starting a relationship, asking someone out, or even preparing for the first date, you need to find out the motivations that drive people to date. Knowing this allows you to set and manage expectations right from the onset. 

With that in mind, we have explained eight reasons why people date in this post. Let’s dig in.

8 Reasons Why People Date + Side Tips

To help you make better decisions, here are 8 reasons why people date.

1. Dating For Love

People date for love
Photo by freestocks on Unsplash

Love is one of the top reasons to date someone. It is human nature to need a sense of belonging, a special bond, and healthy self-esteem while maintaining a long-lasting relationship. Dating for love satisfies these needs. 

Also, researchers have found that people who experience higher ‘felt love’ also have significantly higher levels of psychological well-being, which includes feelings of purpose and optimism, compared to those with lower ‘felt love’ scores.

As such, people who go into relationships for love tend to be happier in life if their expectations are met. 


To save yourself from being hurt, ensure that the feeling is mutual since one-sided or unrequited love can give you a negative perspective and understanding of love.

Also Read: First Date Ideas: 32 Best Activities and Places to Try.

2. Dating For Sex

Most people date for sex. This might be out of fear of commitment or the common mistake of thinking lust is love. Though lust and love share some similarities to an extent, the former is purely about physical and sexual attraction, while the latter offers a deeper connection and desire to make a relationship last

Lust cannot lead to a healthy and long-lasting relationship because of self-indulgence. This is because you likely do not care about the other person deeply and may abandon them once your desire is satisfied. 


If your partner wants to date for sex, the  90-day rule is one way to know. However, this rule is not always accurate because most people might be deceitful, fake emotions, and lead others on.

When dating for sex, be honest with your partner about your intentions. Being upfront allows them to make a better choice—some people would also rather date for sex, and you won’t find them unless you are truthful.

3. Dating To Avoid Being Alone

Anuptaphobia (the fear of being single) is one of the less-known but real reasons why people date. This phobia causes you to go from one relationship to the other at fast paces without having the time to discover yourself or heal from the previous hurt. That said, this habit could lead to forming unhealthy bonds. 

Also, going into a relationship for fear of being alone diminishes your self-esteem and causes unhappiness because you won’t derive satisfaction from your partner. Your partner is not left out of the misery as they would feel undervalued because your expectations from them are based on false reality. 


Dating to avoid being alone is bad for your emotional, mental, and physical health. Instead, take some time off to discover things that interest and motivate you. Practice self-love or see a professional to resolve your fears or concerns before going into any other relationship. 

4. Dating For Companionship

Photo by Chewy on Unsplash

Unlike dating to avoid being alone, dating for companionship does not border on moving across relationships quickly. You might see this kind of relationship in older couples. The goal here is a solid friendship built on trust, transparency, and forgiveness while enjoying each other’s company. As a result, romance or sexual relations may not be the most defining factor.

Relationships conceived for this reason tend to last longer because it involves deep connection and bond. With that in mind, not every relationship that begins with companionship leads to marriage or domestic partnership. Some could lead to lifelong friendships. 


Before dating for companionship, discuss expectations with your partner, evaluate your feelings and ensure you both want the same thing. Ideally, it should be one of the things to talk about during the first date. Always be transparent with your emotions and watch the pace at which the relationship is going. Also, try not to rush your partner into something they are not ready to do.

5. Dating For Marriage

Dating for marriage requires intentional decisions and efforts. When it is the main goal of dating, the individual may focus more on finding long-term and spousal compatibility than on love, but there is clarity and a possibility of developing deep bonds. It’s also worth noting that most people who date for love and other reasons could also lead up to marriage. 

Either way, it is okay if your only focus is on marriage as long as you both work hard towards avoiding a failed marriage.


Try to be open-minded to avoid disappointments that are likely to happen, especially when you do not take the time to know the real version of your potential spouse. 

Also, ensure your partner is genuinely interested in being married as fast as you intend to. If they are not, do not force them or persuade them to take this step before they are ready.

Also Read: 7 Perfectly Healthy Relationship Habits for a Better Relationship.

6. Dating For Money

Money makes life easy. But for some, money is their whole life. It allows them to buy anything, have the best time of their lives, and would “rather cry in a Lamborghini than on a bicycle.” Their reason for dating for money might also be because they have a critical need that requires lots of money within a very short time.

However, dating for money is not a good move because the money rather than the person is what you love. If they are not able to provide as much as they usually would, there is no doubt that you will leave the relationship without a second thought. And if the other person is emotionally invested in the relationship, you would hurt them deeply. . 

Even if everything remains the same financially, there is always someone willing to spend more than your partner. Once you meet them, comparison, dissatisfaction, and unhappiness would crop up in your relationship leading to a breakup.


If you must date for money, get to know your partner first and know if they are ideal for you. Also, don’t depend heavily on them to fund your lifestyle because this might wreak them financially. 

Ideally, do not date for money because you will never find the right one. Your focus will be on the wrong things, which might cause you to miss out on what would have potentially been a beautiful relationship.

7. Dating For Fun

people dating for fun
Photo by Gustavo Fring

Although some adults also prefer going into a relationship for fun, it is more frequent with teenagers. They hear so much about dating from their friends and watch lots of movies that they become curious and want to try dating. However, grown-ups who would rather date for fun are likely trying to avoid any form of commitment and responsibility.

Dating for fun lacks exclusivity, accountability, strong bond, love, and expectations. It is more about “enjoying the privileges that come with dating with no strings attached” than “finding the right person.”


Be honest about what you want with everyone involved to avoid hurting them, and don’t give false hope or make promises of a future that might never come.

8. Dating For Social Status

Social status plays a huge role in attraction because people judge others by appearance and rank. For this reason, they would always want to date the eye-catcher, top model, most beautiful, or the most powerful person. 

Essentially, if you are dating for this reason, the main aim of this relationship would be to find a partner who is on par with your definition of success. While this may inflate your ego, it could put you under a lot of pressure to select only the best and rob you of the opportunity of finding genuine love. Also, your partner might not value or respect you if they find out about your intentions.


Even though there is no crime in dating someone extremely attractive or successful, making sure you are both compatible should be a priority. 

Also, attaining a social position with zero respect from your partner makes you an object of ridicule in the presence of your friends and society, avoid this by not forcing the relationship.

Also read: How to Make Your Girlfriend Feel Truly Special – 2020


What are the top reasons to date someone?

The top reasons to date are love, companionship, and marriage. Starting a relationship for any of these reasons allows you and your love interest to build trust, form an attachment, and be accountable and loyal to one another. Other reasons people date include sex, money, fun, and social status, and to avoid being alone. 

What do women want on a first date?

According to a community survey we carried out, the five things women want on a first date are fun, meaningful conversations, attention, great personality, and to satisfy their curiosity. You can learn more about what they want here.

What do men expect on a first date?

On a first date, some things men expect are punctuality, active listening, no judgments, and lively & meaningful conversations.

Wrapping Up 

Choosing a wholesome relationship starts with making the right choice, so dating for love should be top of the list. But if you would rather date for other reasons, remember to be upfront about your intentions to avoid hurting someone who cares about you deeply.

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