Recently “hooking up” is replacing traditional dating on college campuses in the United States. A “hook-up” is a sexual encounter – usually occurring between people who just met or are casual acquaintances – for which there is no expectation for a future relationship. Hooking up is the polar opposite of dating, which involves getting to know someone and developing a meaningful relationship over time.
The results of a recent study show that more than 95% of women and more than 75% of men preferred dating to hooking up. However, both the male and female participants had experienced more hook ups than first dates over a two-year period. These results indicate that this behavior is becoming the norm among teens and young adults in America.
To make matters worse, about two out of three of the participants reported STDs and one out of three reported pregnancy as risks associated with hook ups. Emotional risk is also associated with casual sexual encounters. A quarter of the females that participated in the study indicated that “wanting a relationship after a hook up and your partner feeling otherwise” was one of the greatest emotional risks. More than a quarter of the participating males indicated that “your partner wanting a relationship or getting attached” was one of their greatest risks.
This may sound like a cliché and cheesy, but it seems to me that women generally want more from men than men are willing to give right away – especially those in their teens and early twenties. Today, however, it seems that women are expected to hook up with men and not be surprised when the hook up does not result in a lasting relationship. This situation is portrayed as an everyday norm in the media and especially on reality shows that document men who meet women at clubs, have sex with them and then show them the door.
I am not a prude but I have learned the value of self-respect over the years from my experience with men and dating. I know this sounds old-fashioned but I have learned I’m worth more than a one-time sexual encounter and so are you! Plus, I am not going to risk my health for someone who sees me as nothing more than a one-night stand. I’ve got more respect for myself than that.