People are marrying and beginning families at ages later than previous generations while becoming sexually mature at an earlier age.As a result, Garcia and other scholars argue that young adults are able to reproduce physiologically but are not psychologically or socially ready to 'settle down' and begin a family.
For parents, the thought of their teen or young adult engaging in sexual activity is a frequent concern.
In my work at the Child Mind Institute, it’s fairly common with any teen or young adult to have at least one therapy session (and usually at least one session with parents as well) focused on decision-making, consent, and safety as it relates to sex or romantic relationships.
My concern led me to Hooking Up: Sex, Dating and Relationships on Campus by sociologist Kathleen A. It’s both a short history of dating culture and a study of the sexual habits of men and women on two college campuses.
Hooking Up is a nonjudgmental window into the relational and sexual challenges facing young women today. Bogle opens with some downright cool history: In the first decade of the twentieth century, a young man could only see a woman of interest if she and her mother permitted him to “call” on them together. Cut to a hundred years later: in today’s hook up culture, physical appearance, status and gender conformity determine who gets called on, and Jack, a sophomore, tells Bogle about party life at school: “Well, talking amongst my friends, we decided that girls travel in threes: there’s the hot one, there’s the fat one, and there’s the one that’s just there.” Er, we’ve come a long way, baby.
Experts say today's busier, less attentive parents and the constant displays of casual sex on TV and in the movies have contributed to the change in teen sexual behavior.
"I think young people are getting the message earlier and earlier that this is what everyone is doing," says Stephen Wallace, chairman and CEO of Students Against Destructive Decisions.
These developmental shifts, Garcia's systematic review of the literature suggests, is one of the factors driving the increase in hookups, a "popular cultural change that has infiltrated the lives of emerging adults throughout the Western world." The review shows that hookups are becoming increasingly normative among young adults and adolescents in North America and have taken root throughout the Western world, which represents a notable shift in how casual sex is perceived and accepted.
Garcia and others have noted that the "past decade has witnessed an explosion in interest in the topic of hookups, both scientifically and in the popular media.
Question: I heard Peggy Orenstein’s interview on NPR and I found it very disturbing.
It’s possible that it’s a generation gap but I was sad that girls are giving but not getting. I was wondering whether there has been any research on boys and their perspective on this “hookup culture.” I’d like to think that both boys and girls are wired for love and relationships but I wonder if that model is broken.
As a relationship advice columnist for Teen Vogue, I get a lot of mail from girls in “no strings attached” relationships.