Calvin is all about acronyms. We have the FAC, RAs, RDs, BV, BHT, etc, etc. It is confusing and feels bizarre for the first few weeks, until you learn that your world becomes so much easier once you just go with the system (the Bible doesn’t say anything about not conforming to your Christian college!) however weird it may be.
One acronym that every Calvin student dreams of using is “DTR”. Why? Because this means that this student is in a relationship with a good god-fearing boy or girl. Now, I admit that I have not researched this particular practice as much as pearling so updates about the further revelations of DTRing may come soon.
What it stands for: DTR stands for “defining the relationship”
WTF does that mean? Those readers who have ever been in a relationship in youth group may remember the “talk”. The first talk usually involves “Oh, um, are we official?” and the second deals with boundaries and whatnot. The DTR is the latter type of talk.
What things are defined: Is this relationship a casual dating relationship or are we on the superhighway towards marriage? If you are at Calvin you can damn well be sure that the relationship you are in is most certainly not casual, but it’s nice to have some reassurance. What physical boundaries are we going to set up? This involves more than regulations like “no touching of the breasts” and whatnot, but even goes as far as to ask questions like “Is it ok for us to visit each other in our dorm rooms?” (during open house hours, of course), “How often during the week will we “date”? “How do we define a “date”? etc, etc. They sometimes can get quite nitpicky (and if you’ve ever met a Calvin girl, you might understand).
A word of clarification: This sort of talk is different than the “we need to talk” type of talks that a girlfriend may pull on her boyfriend when she is ticked at him. A DTR usually takes place within the first few weeks of a relationship, though it may be later revised if either party wishes to further discuss some aspects of the first DTR.