Most people, especially teenagers, are influenced by their peers, parents and social media. Whether it is what is in style or what the kids are doing these days, it seems like everyone is following each other either through a social network such as Facebook or through face to face interactions. One of the areas in which they are influenced most is dating. Dating is a modern phenomenon which has only recently been brought up in the last century. Not only is dating the norm in the United States, but also in many other modern societies around the world. Courting has become a thing of the past and society has become more and more aware of the idea of dating.
Dating is not only recent, but looking throughout history we see that in most cases the only way a man could express themselves interactively or sexually with a woman was through arranged marriages. Only in modern times has the man, and even more recently, the woman have the right to choose their own mate. Skip Burzumato explains that in the 1930’s and 40’s “courtship increasingly took place in public spaces such as movie theaters and dance halls, removed by distance and by anonymity from the sheltering and controlling contexts of the home and local community.” This in itself is a big leap from what the custom was 500, or even 250 years ago in America, when dating was unheard of, and courting happened in designated places, and rules were set upon by the parents.
Matters like that of dating have become a timely topic especially with teens and young adults. Everyone wants to know who the newest couple is, who is available, or how long a couple has been going out for. This type of social behavior is mostly seen in younger ages, most typically in middle school and high school students. These questions don’t only come from curiosity but also from the need of being socially acceptable. Many times we see the unpopular girls at school trying to go out with a popular guy in order to gain a higher social status. We have exchanged the survival of the fittest view of acquiring a mate in order to have a higher survival rate for the higher social status acquired from dating someone popular.
Our daily lives are bombarded with pop culture and societal pressure of many sorts. This pressure may come in various forms such as peer pressure, or even as simple as television shows or ads. It is unusual that a high school or even a middle school student is unaware of what happens during a date. Many of these students have even attended a date or have carried a relationship with someone intimately. Their idea of a relationship is making out, and putting out. Engaging in sexual intercourse before marriage almost never came up before in the era before dating, but what has changed in today’s culture that has made this topic bearable in recent times? Steven E. Roahds argues that, “The collegiate women are available because most of the women’s movement has insisted that sexual liberation is an important part of women’s...