Every generation is different when it comes to dating. There are so many different meanings to the term or what others see as a label.
To the old school traditional single birds, dating means taking the time to know someone, develop a relationship, and the intimacy. In our generation, dating means having sex first, then you get to know the person, and eventually meet the parents; only if you both come to an agreement on dating in a relationship. In other words, we take the car for a test drive before singing the lease.
We forget the values our parents have endorsed when it comes to having respect on dating someone. From opening the door of the car, to holding hands, or asking for permission on taking someone on a date. Now we don't ask for permission but sometimes wont even come home until the next morning from our date. We do not even have gentlemen opening our doors but unzipping our jeans, and we no longer hold hands but have their hands caress our ass while we walk side by side. Since when did that become ok? Apparently it did on my generation!
I have seen the new pattern in dating. First, you text the person non stop to try to find a connection. That's the stage of "talking." Then, you hang out or kick it. That's when dates occur or they just meet to spend time. Eventually, they get physical and have sex but are not a couple. After having sex, depending how well it went, dating will continue or break. Pretty much dating means hooking up. Having sex, foreplay, or just becoming friends with benefits.
Many young adults in our generation just want to try every flavor they can (women), to see who will be the best one to keep, and develop a relationship. It can be vise versa with women. I mean everyone wants to try every flavor in the book, well from the way my generation has shown; we live in a hook up generation!
Dating has many meanings to different individuals, but one thing is for sure, they all want to have company at some point. Either with intimacy, or a movie, we want the person we are dating to be by our side even if its for a few hours. Somehow being in frequent contact with the person we are dating might help us develop a stronger attraction, feelings, or grow into a relationship. Its not always a happy ending after the hook up stage.
I did a small research with a few friends and came to a conclusion; no one actually knows what dating means anymore! To some dating means sex. To others it means going on dates, while others try to find the actual meaning on internet dating site. Since when did dating become a title we desire, or don't want at all. Is it the actual hook up generation where we want no strings attached or do we actually want to try to date in hopes of finding our happy ending? Most Arab guys don't date unless they can see a possible marriage connection. In other words they wont rent someone's emotions or rent a girlfriend. Why waste their time?! On the female perspective, dating can mean different things. For some women, dating means hanging out with a guy until Mr. Right comes along. Pretty much having someone as company while having fun without strings attached. There is also young women out there including myself who go in different dates but do not commit to the first candidate. Pretty much we test the waters of the ocean we actually want to surf. We have to see what our options, are and if there is a connection that develops within time; take dating into a relationship level.
Somehow our generation lost the value of the real meaning of dating. There isn't many couples out there who are actually dating, better yet not many people want to be labeled. Instead our generation is all about having "fun" without the label of being committed to someone. Apparently it is ok to hook up with different people (date around), until we find the one we want to actually get to know. Now I see why marriages do not last more than three years. Its because our generation does not take the time to get to develop stronger feelings towards our partner. We jump into the emotion of sex and do not think of the consequences. I believe that's probably the main reason why so many of us do not know what the actual meaning of dating is anymore. Its a confusing label of being with someone when we are afraid of commitment. Either way, dating is a hook up trend which makes many of us avoid being in a relationship and enjoying our youth without having to commit to one person. Its a sad generation, however its the reality for many of us.