Normally, they would refer to a boyfriend/girlfriend.
Student or Learner
If someone says "My date is older than me." or "I have never dated ..."
Does it mean that the date is his/her boyfriend/girlfriend?
Can the date be a normal friend/stranger?
A date is a potential boyfriend/girlfriend. It is someone you have chosen to give preliminary consideration to.
When someone says "I have dated 10 guys."
Does that mean that she will have 1 to 10 ex boyfriends?
Circumstances vary. A date may be with a complete stranger, a prior acquaintance, a current boyfriend/girlfriend, or even a fiance or spouse.
Some married friends of mine have a monthly 'date night', where they hire a babysitter and go out just the two of them, as a way of keeping their relationship from stagnating.
Often people continue to date after becoming boyfriend/girlfriend, but sometimes the purpose of the date is just to get to know the person initially.
Sometimes you discover after one date that a further relationship isn't viable, or that you aren't attracted to the person, so they're not actually your significant other. So having been on ten dates doesn't mean having had 10 boyfriends/girlfriends.
Perhaps it took ten dates to find somebody compatible?
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