Teens that are dating have faced new challenges every single generation. Nowadays, most of the difficulties stem from the connections between teens and technology. We’re going to show you six specific ways that teen dating has changed in the modern digital age, in order to represent to you how it looks like to meet love and friends in this day and age.
1. Flirt become virtual
The first major change in recent years is that more teens are finding dates and flirting online. This is a transformation that has been slowly taking root over the years, but this generation is certainly the one that has been most significantly impacted by dating in a virtual setting. Teens want the ability to have private, romantic conversations that their parents can’t find out about, leading them to use dating platforms to flirt, find matches, and host dates. These websites are accepted in the overall social context because they are seen as a safe way for younger people to explore their romantic side.
2. Dating platforms aimed at teens
Another aspect of teen dating is that more dating services are being aimed directly at teens than ever before. In the past, online dating was something that was said to be for adults only. Yet, teenage dating apps are now a very popular way of finding romance for teens due to the apps being simple to use, private, and secure. Moreover, it’s clear that teens are the least wealthy element of society, so they have to use methods of finding partners and entertaining them that do not cost a lot of money. That is a niche that dating websites can fill very well. Most teens in college know about the possibilities of using dating sites, and 57% of teen singles have used a digital platform to host dates at some point in the past.
3. Access from all over the world
Dating websites have become a common way for people to forge romantic connections with one another across vast distances. There is something especially intriguing to younger people about dating people from another part of the world. Modern dating apps give people the opportunity to really explore the world around them by setting dates with foreigners. Between language supports systems bridging the language gap and being able to find a date based on one’s location, it’s easy to see why teens feel so comfortable asking out somebody from a different place. Commonly, single teens will seek out cultures similar to theirs in terms of language but different in customs. For example, you might see teens from Australia dating teens from the U.K. or the United States. The sense of adventure mixed with familiarity is enough to interest any teen that wants to experience new aspects of culture and romance.
4. Social networks and messengers
While smartphones have been the biggest and most disruptive technology in terms of changing social norms in the last decade, social media has been the biggest software. Social media has been an all-encompassing juggernaut. While the Millennial generation got social media in their teens, modern teens have grown up on a steady diet of it, and it has changed everything about the way they communicate. They capture the mundanity of their lives, etching every thought into a semi-permanent record that tends to haunt most of these teens. In some ways, social media has been good, but it has been harmful in others. For example, teens are desperate for the recognition and sense of value that comes from likes. Consider the countless stories of teens buying likes on their social media accounts. The same candidness is available in relationships, too. While teens flocked to the internet to get privacy, their private lives are aired out online constantly, with every teenage fight and argument available for all their friends to see.
5. 24/7 on a wire
An unfortunate element of teenage dating that exists in the present is that teens are constantly linked to the internet. They have their phones with them all the time, and they are always connected to messengers, social media, and dating apps. While that might seem like a benefit insofar that it will be easier to manage their lives, it has some negative impacts. For example, teens are inundated with information and people on social media, and some believe that it is becoming harder for them to form relationships. We’re not claiming that a hallmark of teenage relationships is longevity, but the constant availability of others online means that teens are more likely to cut and run from a relationship at the first sign of adversity. With 45% of all teens online “almost constantly,” they are fully capable of getting attention from others instead of working with what they already have.
6. Long-distance teenage relationships
A major benefit of online dating is that it has fostered an entirely new way of having long-distance relationships. A problem that has emerged in the past is that teens go away to college, and they start drifting apart until the relationship crumbles. In the present, teens have the internet to help them stay connected to their partners. With video chats, instant messaging, and the ability to schedule dates at a time that works best for them, it is easy to have long-term relationships over a long distance. That does not mean it is emotionally easier for teens to be in these relationships, especially with so many distractions that are closer to them, but it is possible to have such a date.
Teens are growing up in a different world than their parents, and dating is one measure of the differences between today and yesteryear. With so many easy ways of communicating and the constant availability of information and people, it is hard not to both envy and feels bad for teens that are coming up today. Having a digital imprint that is tied to your name is going to challenge many people moving forward.