The dating scene for youth today is so different than what it was before social media. "Hookup" culture is more alive than ever. The rise of Snapchat and dating apps only encourage this issue. The lack of emotional vulnerability leads to people getting hurt, who in turn, hurt other people.
These songs perfectly depict the heartbreak, challenges, and emotional trauma that manifest from this new relationship culture, and how hard it is to connect in a world where being "friends with benefits" is romanticized.
1. "Online Love" by Conan Gray
This song says so much in the thirty-seven seconds it plays. It beautifully paints a picture of what it is like to have a relationship with someone strictly over the phone. The abundance of emotions and the countless nights overthinking what is going to come from the said "online love" that is produced from these interactions is very gracefully perceived in these lyrics. Conan has such a beautiful way with his words and uses visualization and storytelling to depict just exactly how he is feeling. This really showed through in this short song. Having a strict text message relationship is unfortunately very normal in today's society. The emotional stress that often comes from it isn't always talked about, but in this song, Conan really explains the different stages of thoughts that come from this type of relationship.
2. "Made Love First" by Marc E. Bassy ft. Kehlani
Marc talks about diving into a physical relationship and the regret that follows afterward. The regret of gaining physical interaction before emotional connect or mental stimulation can be common in "hookup culture." He talks about how he wishes he could have known the other person before they had sex because now, they are struggling with working backward in the relationship. This song is a really good depiction of many modern-day scenarios.
3. "I Love How" by Caroline Manning
With social media being the key form of communication, it is so easy to ignore people or send mixed signals. This song dives into how lonely it feels to be in a relationship that doesn't have equal effort being put into it. She starts the song off about how her significant other leaves her on read, or just completely ignores her messages. This is so easy to do when the main forms of communication aren't in person.
4. "Thru Your Phone" by Cardi B
Cardi B has absolutely no issue with being honest about how she feels. With her very direct lyrics, she paints the picture of all the emotions that flooded in when she went through her lover's phone and discovered that they had been cheating on her. She talks about how they had a group chat with their friends talking about all the girls they've been with during the relationship. Cheating is so much easier with social media and it is definitely a growing issue within relationships.
5. "F*** Being Friends" by Jessie Reyez
Much like Cardi B, Jessie is very blunt with her lyrics. The song goes in-depth about how frustrating it is to be into a person who just wants to be friends, but with the physical benefits that usually come with a relationship. This person doesn't want to call her theirs but also doesn't want her to be anyone else's. She points out how unfair it is to her to just be used as a physical pawn. She continues to call out this person and tell them all the reasons why their situation is not ok. This is another very common situation in today's dating culture. Commitment is not appealing to current generations.
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