Yup, go to Riften & talk to the priest of Mara in either the temple or The Bee and the Barb. Wear your amulet around an npc you're interested in and the courtship dialogue should open up. Sometimes they require you do a task for them though, kinda like in Fable.
Also, I think you may be able to dismiss the Housecarls? In the dialogue there might be an "I think we should part ways" option oris that just for followers? Not too sure, I never bring any of them anywhere with me and keep the communication to a minimum.... unless I'm asking my husband for money or a homecooked meal. I mean really, it's not too much to ask that he fill my pockets and makes me a sammich when I'm home from adventuring ;)