As with everything else, dating also follows the theory of evolution. It changes as our pace of life, technology, moral values, and trends do simply because it needs to survive by being efficient. Today, we take a look at the ways dating has changed over the last decades.
You May Not Have Realized These Ways Dating Has Changed
Believe it or not, the way we choose to date today is a far cry from how our parents used to flirt and handle their relationships. These are some of the most significant changes that dating has undergone.
#1. We can find our partners online. One major change to how people used to date is how we meet potential partners. In the days before the internet existed (not as far back in the past as some might think), people did not even imagine you could chat and even date someone you’d never met face-to-face. Today, it’s how people from all over the world have the chance to find their significant other from a seemingly endless pool of possibilities.
#2. Dating moves faster. We can all agree that no one has time to waste nowadays. This explains why we are more reluctant to give a date a second chance if we’re unsure of how the first one went, preferring to move on to the next potential girlfriend/ boyfriend instead.
#3. Breakups are easier and less personal. In the past, people had to either meet the person with whom they wished to finish a relationship or at least give them a call. Today, technology has made breaking up far easier and far more impersonal. Terms like ‘ghosting’ were also unknown things, as it was a thing of shame to not properly explain yourself before leaving a relationship.
#4. People have sex more easily but less frequently. With 29% of Americans thinking sex before marriage was OK in the 1970s, 49% in the 2000s, and an even bigger 58% believing so in 2012 (according to a 2016 study in the Archives of Sexual Behavior), it is clear that in the Western world there’s been a major shift when it comes to sleeping with someone outside of marriage.
On the other hand, even though we can do it, it doesn’t mean people are actually having more sex. In fact, the study found that people born in the 80s were twice as likely to be sexually active in their early twenties as people who were born in the 1990s are now. We are probably so busy these days, that we barely have the time or inclination for sex, it seems.
#5. We get married and have kids later. One of the most noteworthy changes in how we date and deal with relationships today is how we get married and decide to have offspring later in life. Despite the fact (or maybe because of it?) that young couples cohabitate a lot easier these days, data showed that in 2014, 68% of Americans aged 18 to 33 had never been married, as opposed to a significantly smaller 43% in the same age group in 1980.
As far as children as concerned, the average age of a woman’s first childbirth went from 21.4 in 1970 to 26.3 in 2014, while the number of women who decide to have kids in their 20s dropped by 15% between 2007 and 2012.
The reasons given for these major changes in marriage and childbirth are primarily career reasons as well as financial ones.
It is no exaggeration to say that if a person who lived in the 1980s was suddenly dropped in today’s dating world, he’d be totally lost and confused. Even though people are, at their core, the same, the ways dating has changed over the years are so fundamental that we can now talk about a totally different dating landscape.