Rituals of dating
In 2008 just 3% of all Americans said that they had used an online dating site; by 2009 that figure had risen to 6% of all Americans, and today 9% of the adult population has used an online dating site.”Being able to connect with so many possible matches at the touch of a button should have simplified the already difficult process and made it even easier to find a “soul mate.” Yet it has instead complicated it, resulting in less solid relationships than ever before.“Traditional courtship—picking up the telephone and asking someone on a date—required courage, strategic planning and a considerable investment of ego (by telephone, rejection stings),” The New York Times reported in the article “The End of Courtship?” “Not so with texting, e-mail, Twitter or other forms of ‘asynchronous communication,’ as techies call it.There’s enormous pressure, both self-imposed and societal, to be in a relationship.But rushing to fall in love makes falling in love impossible for me, because the pressure to commit doesn’t allow my feelings to develop naturally.While some have met with success online, one of the problems with most relationships in the 21st century is that they often come without definition, as explained by Elite Daily staff writer Paul Hudson. Sure, you’re not just having sex, you’re hanging out as well. With all these different levels of togetherness that we’ve invented, it’s no surprise that many times we’ll find ourselves with a person and not know how to introduce him or her to friends or family.”A lack of defining what is and is not happening has caused great confusion and emotional turmoil from singles in their 20s up to their 60s and 70s.In an article titled “8 Modern Dating Struggles That No Other Generation Has Had to Deal With,” he writes that years ago most people dated to develop long-lasting relationships.“Because most of our relationships start with sex before they turn into something substantial, it can be rather difficult figuring out where exactly that line between the two is located. In her book, The End of Sex: How Hookup Culture Is Leaving a Generation Unhappy, Sexually Unfulfilled and Confused About Intimacy, author Donna Freitas explained how those who participate in the hook-up culture see relationships as merely self-gratification and become apathetic to those with whom they are involved.
In addition, the constant searching, spending time with a person, becoming intimate with them, finding it does not work out, and then moving on to the next person, leaves a void in both men and women’s lives, and in many cases, makes them unable to be vulnerable with another person and trust him or her, which is key to a relationship.“About a third of men (32%) and women (34%) say they are not sure whether they should marry when or if they find themselves in a committed, exclusive relationship,” an American Association of Retired Persons study on habits of singles between the ages of 40 and 69 stated.Imagine a simpler time: A well-dressed single gentleman pulls up to the front of a single lady’s home in the early evening, steps out of his car, and approaches her front door.The two of them were introduced to one another by a mutual friend at a social function some weeks prior. As she steps outside, he offers an umbrella to shield her from rain showers, walks with her to the passenger side of the car, and opens the door for her. The pair takes a scenic route to a special destination: a reserved table at an elegant restaurant.I like to have them join in on what I’m doing—going to an event, a concert.’”For the average 20- or 30-year-old, a traditional date includes using a smartphone app to locate someone of the opposite sex whose physical appearance is appealing, texting him or her, meeting in a bar, mumbling through conversation with the person in between texting friends, and then possibly returning to the other’s apartment for a late-night tryst.If there is any type of connection, the two may decide to text each other later to “hang out” or “hook up” again.