Are We The Hookup Generation?

Are We The Hookup Generation?

A deeper look at current and past hookup trends.

Growing up in the commonly known "Hookup Generation" has led me to question... have times truly changed? What would make my generation more focused on a casual hookup opposed to previous generations, could it be in our blood? All signs are pointing to no. Scientists from the University of Portland looked into a study that compared 18-25 year old students during both 1988-1996 and 2004-2012. The study examined the students' sexual behaviors, desires, and actions. After research, studies show that we are not necessarily the hookup generation; students from the 80s to 90s were shown to start sexual activity at a younger age, have sex more often, and encounter more sexual partners than students during 2004 to 2012.

Although many claim hookup culture is on the rise, flooding college campuses, the truth is what we are experiencing is nothing but old news. Maybe it just seems prevailing because it's more accepted and discussed now, or possibly due to social media. When you think about it, we now have apps such as Tinder devoted to finding your next hookup. In fact, in my recent experiences, hookups seem to be encouraged by friends. It's a hot topic that almost everyone seems to want to be a part of, whether or not they condone hookups. Sex has always been, and always will be a part of college campuses. Dating may be dead, but it died a long time ago, maybe even as early as 1980.



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College: The New Chapter

The things you probably are stressing a little too much over. 

If you are anything like me, change can be almost smothering. I hate changes, and college is full of change. I spent my last few weeks of high school and the following summer completely stressed over what the future held. How will the classes go? What if I don’t know anybody? Are professors as strict and cruel as they say? If I barely passed high school, how would I do well in college of all things? I worried over these questions and any others you could possibly think of yourself. Let me be real with you, college is scary to think about. Everyone has anxieties over it. It’s a normal process. 

First, let’s talk about the changes. College is way more laid back than high school. You won’t have the same classes every single day and sometimes you may even only go to class two times a week (if you schedule them that way). Remember those days watching the clock tick away and waiting for the bell to signal that you can leave class finally? If you’re still in high school, good news. In college, professors can let out students earlier after finishing exams or lectures. I’ve had classes last semester where teachers would let us out twenty minutes after class had started. I’m sure this isn't a case for every professor, but it is something to look towards. These are examples of good changes. And most of the changes in college are in the “good” category. However, with me, I in a way mourned over having no close friends or people to talk to. I missed seeing my friends walk by me. I was a little lonely at first. This change killed me. I wanted more than anything to have someone I could laugh with during breaks. You see, I had to learn quickly that sometimes you may lose touch with your old pals from high school. Therefore, if you were/are as shy as I am, you had to come out of your bubble a bit and be comfortable where you were at. 

Professors are there for you. Trust me, if you put in the work and effort, they will do everything they can to help you reach your goals. Do not be afraid to email questions or concerns or talk to them privately after class, especially if you are confused about something! Take it from someone who never did this in high school herself. Personally, I feel like in college it‘s easier to focus and stay on track. Keep up with your assignments. A planner is your new best friend. Study hard, but don’t stress yourself out last minute. Allow yourself time to let information sink in over a period of days. You may be saying,“ But how am I going to manage college if I couldn’t even hardly pass high school?” Let me tell you, it’s easier than you allow yourself to think. Be willing! I had a hard time with high school myself. I had a low GPA and hardly ever actually studied. Now, I have all A’s, a 4.0 GPA, and I am on honor roll in my first semester of college. In high school, I was lucky if I had a C or B. It is possible! 

If you are currently about to become a college student yourself in maybe a few months or in a year’s time, this is for you. Don’t stress. I know it’s easier said than done (hypocritical me). Believe me though, if you spend your last moments with your friends all together worrying over college, you will regret it. My advice is simply to enjoy the last remaining days in high school. Take those silly photos for Instagram with the caption “senyas!”. Make memories. Laugh at the lunch table as your friends tell their crazy stories or thoughts. Prepare yourselves these last few weeks with the memories of everyone surrounding you. Go to those concerts, games, and other school events. Lastly, walk across that stage on your graduation day saying “I did it and I’m going to do it even bigger now.” These are your moments that you will have on your heart forever. 

So, don’t stress over the college days coming. You will be absolutely fine. You will succeed. You will change the world. 

Sincerely,

A college freshman

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To The New Boy I've Let Into My Life

I don't know how to thank you for showing me there is better out there.

I pray your intentions are good and pure.

I've had my heart broken so many times that it has become hard for me to let new people into my life. I have been lied to, destroyed. I have felt like I would never recover and that I would always feel disappointed and broken.

But then I met you. I was cautious at first. I always will be and that is what happens after you get your heart broken. It was hard to hide away from you when you showed me how truly sweet and understanding you were. I told you about the ways I had been hurt in the past, and you sympathized with me, telling me I deserved better. You told me the same things that my best friends told me. You told me I was beautiful, and that I deserved to be respected.

You opened doors for me, you paid for every date when I offered and even begged for you to let me pay just this once. You listened to every word I said, and you understood my fears about relationships and commitment. You understood me in a way that I had never experienced before. I started to feel comfortable around you. Spending time with you became intoxicating.

It felt different this time. You did not belittle me or give me an attitude. You didn't yell at me or criticize me for asking "dumb questions". You treated me so respectfully. I did not even know it was possible to meet someone like you, and I started to feel like my standards before you were way too low. You exceeded every other guy I had dated.

My parents were weary. They were just as cautious, if not more. They kept telling me to take it slow, along with my friends. They were tired of seeing me sad, but it was so hard to take things slow with you. I felt ready to jump into something with you because of the safety I was feeling.

At first, I was still sad about my ex. It's not like I wanted him back, but thinking about him being with someone else made me a little sad. I was still hurt about the things he put me through. I was hurt that I did not respect and love myself to end things earlier. I was disappointed in myself for being sad about him still because I knew you were so much better than him, but you were patient and understanding about it.

I started to feel happy again. I started to feel like I was connecting with someone in a way I had not been familiar with before. I noticed we had a lot in common, too. My ex always said we were so much alike but now that I look back on it, we really were not anything alike. We had very few things in common and we could never agree on things to do.

But, you were so different. We enjoyed the same things, we could agree on things so easily. I did not have to pretend to be different for you. You made it very clear that you were going to care for me and I did not have to change for you. I did not have to hide my depression or anxiety, you did not make me feel like it was a burden.

I know this is just the beginning but I cannot thank you enough for the ways you have made me feel, and how relieved I feel to have met someone new that has made me realize there is better out there. I feel beyond blessed to know that I have met someone who is always there for me and does not think my problems are irrational and crazy. Please don't let me down.

Cover Image Credit: realmendrinkwhiskey.com

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