Millennials–we are the generation born between the 1980s and the 2000s. In these modern times, we have the world at our fingertips. We can learn pretty much anything in just a few moments by going to Google. We can have a “face-to-face” conversation with someone who’s thousands of miles away from us by using Skype or Facetime. All the gadgets and information are readily available to us in this era have changed the face of dating to some degree. Here are five things about dating as a millennial that set us apart from previous generations.
1. Meeting your partner online is normal.
With social media sites like Facebook and dating apps like Tinder, it feels like it’s easier to meet someone online than it is to meet someone in person! Because of the amazing technology available to us, meeting your boyfriend or girlfriend online is becoming more and more common. In fact, I met my Filipino husband while I was more than 7,000 miles away, living in the United States–that would have never been possible for the older generations of daters.
2. Dating is less structured.
In past generations, dating was a lot more formal. A couple plans a date in advance, the guy will pick up the girl and often bring flowers, he’ll take her to dinner and perhaps a movie, then take her home and say good night at the front door. For millennials, just about anything can qualify as a date. Bowling with a group of friends, grabbing some takeout and sitting in the park, going on a weekend trip to the beach together, a date can be anything you want it to be.
3. Sex isn’t as “cryptic” as it was before.
Let me expand upon that. Sex is still a big deal in the sense that most people want to lose their virginity to someone special, and most people won’t have sex with just anyone they go out with. But on the other hand, with all the knowledge that our generation has about sexuality, sexual health, birth control and more, sex is a lot less stigmatized than it once was. Our generation doesn’t judge as much when someone chooses to engage in sex outside of marriage. We just try to make sure that people engaging in sexual behavior are educated about what they are doing and do it safely.
4. We communicate more frequently.
Several decades ago, communication was a lot less easy than it is now. When you called someone, you had to call their house phone and hope they were there. When the Internet was born, you also had to hope that no one was using the internet so that your beau could pick up the phone. Couples that were courting weren’t in contact every day. Now, we have cellphones and instant messaging available to us, and many couples talk to each other every day, sometimes even throughout the entire day. 30 years ago, you wouldn’t think anything of it if your guy didn’t call you back until the next morning. Now, if he doesn’t respond to your text within an hour, you start to wonder if something is wrong.
5. We aren’t afraid to go after what we want.
The biggest thing about dating as a millennial is that we are no longer afraid to go after what we want. We aren’t going to just stand by and wait for something to happen, we’re going to make it happen. If you want to meet new people, you join a dating site. If you’re crushing on that guy from work, you’ll work up the nerve to invite him out for coffee. Society’s thoughts and influence aren’t as important as they were for other generations. Sure, older people may make judgments, but we won’t let that stop us from finding our own happiness. We are the generation that knows if we want something, we got to go after it, no holds barred.
One thing that’s the same about dating as it’s always been, though? Dating makes us feel nervous, anxious, excited, butterflies-in-our-stomach wonderful. No matter what changes about dating in the generations to come, that will always stay the same!