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The world of “dating” is evolving as fast as, if not faster than, the technology in the hands of young adults throughout the country. Justin Garcia, a research scientist at Indiana University’s Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender, and Reproduction has observed the transition in the world of human reproduction. “There have been two major transitions in heterosexual mating in the last four million years. The first was around 10,000 to 15,000 years ago, in the agricultural revolution, when we became less migratory and settled, and the second major transition is with the rise of the internet,” says Garcia (Sales, 2015). Far in the past are the days of romantic first dates and meeting a true love in a diner on the outskirts of a small town. College students are now participating in what is called “hook-up culture,” and there is seldom an innocent person to be found. Recent studies have found that more and more young adults are turning to apps such a Tinder and Grindr to hook up with others their age whom they find attractive (Kerner,2013). With meaningful relationships going out of style, this generation is subject to a lack of loving commitment. As a college freshman, I have seen more casual hook ups than I would have ever expected going into a Benedictine institution. With casual sex on the rise, members of Generation Y must analyze the effects of hook up culture and come to terms with what the future might hold. 

Although men are often identified as pigs, blame for the advancement of hook-up culture can just as easily be set on women. Casual hookups are portrayed by shows such as HOB’s “Sex in the City” as glamourous and carefree. Women are lowering their standards and turning away from the idea of saving themselves until marriage in the name of feminism and fun. However, casual sex is not a good for the nature of women. Many females attempt to be in relationship that is purely physical, but have not been able to maintain them due to emotional difficulties. Feminism teaches women that they should protect against pregnancy and STDs while exploring their sexuality, but feminism does not preach about protecting women emotionally (Rhoads, 2012). Kate Fillion, author of Lip Service, recounted how she retroactively decided that she was in love with every mane she had had sex with. Feminist often view exploring sexuality as a way for women to express their power. Conversely, Fillion state that the only power she got from sex “was the power to cause myself emotional pain.” This emotional disturbance displayed by Fillion is not uncommon. Catherine Grello, a clinical psychologist found that men who sleep around are the least likely to report symptoms of depression. However, female college students who engage in casual sex are the most likely to report symptoms of depression. Social scientist Edward S Herold and Dawn-Marie Mewhinney found that females who participate in hook-up culture receive less enjoyment and feel more guilt and regret than males who participate in similar behavior (Rhoads, 2012). Women are also pursuing hook-ups in an attempt to develop a relationship with the other party (Kerner, 2013). This year I had the pleasure of living with nineteen other magnificent women. I second-handedly experienced how casual sex can ruin women emotionally. Some of the most beautiful and stable women I have ever met were reduced to tears after they “caught the feels” for someone who just wanted them for their body. It was devastating to watch wonderful people spiral into boughts of self-inflicted depression as their male interest moved onto the next conquest. 

On the other hand, males are not absent of fault for the increase of the prominence of hook-up culture. Members of fraternities call the incoming freshmen coed “fresh meat” and try to charm their unsuspecting victims into bed. “Hitting it and quitting it” introduces these young girls to the hook-up culture that is very prevalent in colleges and universities and changes their mindset about sex. Young men today are not socially similar to those of the twentieth century. Men used to be willing to settle with one woman and raise a family, but with more women lowering their standards for their partners, men see no reason to settle down when it is much easier to partake in casual sex (Rhoads, 2012). 

Hook-up culture subjects men and women to double standards. A great misogynistic self-proclaimed philosopher once posted on the internet, “A key that opens many locks is a Master Key, but a lock that opens to many keys is a bad lock.” Essentially, this person believed that men should take pride in having multiple sexual partners, and women should be shamed for similar behaviors. Shaming women for being sexually prominent is often referred to as “slut shaming.” Slut shaming is visible across campus at Saint Vincent College. Whether it is through anonymous apps like Yik Yak or whispers behind closed doors, no sexually explorative woman is safe. Men, however are celebrated by their peers and given celebrity status on campus for being sexual gods. 

Hook-up culture is in need of reform for the sake of women’s sanity. Sexual education should start at a younger age in order to warn the youth of the emotional and physical dangers of casual sex. The reluctance of parents to talk to their children about sex needs to disappear. If parents turn a blind eye to the prominence of casual of sex, their children will assume that hooking up is a normal occurrence. And although Saint Vincent College is a Benedictine institute, it must address the problem by providing support groups or seminars (Rhoads, 2012). 

If hook-up culture continues progressively increasing, the sanctity of marriage and commitment will be a concept of the past. Women will be mentally and emotionally depleted, and men will continue to sit on their high horses. 

 

HCXO, 

Anonymous 

 

Work Cited 

Sales, Nancy Jo. "Tinder and the Dawn of the Dating Apocalypse."Vanity Fair. Vanity Fair Magazine, Sept. 2015. Web. 25 Mar. 2016. 

Rhoads, Steven E. "Hookup Culture: The High Cost of a Low "Price" for Sex." Symposium: Mating Games. N.p., 18 Oct. 2012. Web. 25 Mar. 2016. 

Kerner, Ian. "Young Adults and a Hookup Culture." CNN. Cable News Network, 16 May 2013. Web. 25 Mar. 2016.