Me, my date, and my mom

The typical American date is often different for students without a driver’s license


Parker Nolan

Dating is a normal part of life for many high schoolers, but for some younger students, the options are limited. Students without a license must be driven to dates and/or their dates house by a parent of friend.

Two students slide onto the plush seats of a cherry red truck, smiling from ear to ear with nervous glee.The car’s engine roars to life and the radio plays a sweet tune as the sun fades down into the horizon with bursts of a pink and orange sunset. The two face each other and stare into each other’s eyes.

They can go anywhere they want.

As long as their parents say it’s OK.

For students without a driver’s license, dating becomes a whole lot harder. Students can’t go on dates without a parent as a chauffeur, which can make for awkward situations. Neither sophomore Lindsay Haden or her boyfriend, sophomore Jerad King, have their driver’s license yet, and she said that having to be driven by parents was awkward at first.

“It was pretty weird, and sometimes when relatives come over and they’re in the car with us it’s awkward because we don’t know what to say,” Haden said. “[But now,] because we’ve been dating so long, it’s not weird anymore because we both know each other’s parents.”

Haden also was afraid that her parents would say something to embarrass her in the car. However, she said they “never did,” but that she was “always afraid that they would.”

For freshman Katya Jackson, however, being driven by an adult on dates was never that uncomfortable.

“To be honest my parents were cool with each other’s parents,” Jackson said. “And it’s not as awkward as it might seem.”

Freshman Adelyn Muruca said that, without a driver’s license, “you can’t just get up and go.” An adult has to be available, and that presents a problem for parents.

“It affects my personal schedule,” said Adelyn’s mother, Niki Muruca. “I have to be available to drive them and their friends. They probably don’t get to do as much as they’d like to since sometimes I’m busy.”

Though things will be easier for Adelyn and her mother once she gets her license, Niki still has her concerns.

“I look forward to it being easier for me with her being able to drive herself where she wants to go, yet I will worry about her when she does drive on her own or goes in a car with a boy,” Niki said.

For sophomore Ryan Irwin, “nothing has really changed at all” in his dating life upon receiving his license. On the other hand, Haden said that she and her boyfriend will probably “go out more because we’ll be able to.”

“There will definitely be a lot more freedom and you just tell your parents, ‘Hey, I’m going to go out with so-and-so and do this-and-this and be back by whatever time,’” Adelyn said. “It’ll be so much easier than your parents having to try to arrange cars to come and get you and who’s picking up who.”