One of the things I have to confess, is that some of my relationship advice is going to be completely out of date by the time you are ready to read these articles or ask it of me. Nothing has changed faster in our culture over the last hundred years or so then the way people get together.
When I was in college, the hookup culture was just beginning. People had just started to have sex together without dating first. Things like “friends with benefits where” a brand new idea, and one not too many people were sure of. Even the way I dated when I was your mother, was totally different then the way my parents dated:
The way your mother and I dated was very casual, we spend a lot more time hanging out together, playing games and chatting then any formal dating, like taking each other out to movies or buying each other dinner. Many older people thought our relationship was strange, and way too casual. But then, their parents though the same thing of the way dating was handled in he 1960s and 1970s.
Nowadays, even hook-up culture seems old fashioned compared to the instant all sex culture of dating applications like Tinder and OkCupid. And things are changing still.
I do believe, that a lot of the ways we approach sex and relationships in our culture today are dead ends. The focus on sex without relationships, and the focus on relationships without commitment are both doing us no favors. They don’t make people happy, and they don’t make for a healthy society.
I suspect we will see a change back towards dating and courtship, or at least two words building a solid friendship with elements of romance and dating woven into it like your mother and I had. And even if we don’t, this may be a place where I’m going to encourage you to be charmingly old fashioned. Whether you choose to get into long term relationships and marriage or not, getting to know and respect and care about the women or men that you form relationships with is healthier for you -at least as long as the person him- or her-self is healthy.
Of course, the world is full of books of predictions by people better educated than I. Maybe things will go in a way I can’t even imagine. I don’t know, and have said to your mother many times, that your experience of love and romance will be very different from ours I can only hope is that I will still be able to provide you with guidance in a landscape that might well be completely alien from the one I’m experienced with.