Howthe Hookup Culture Is Affecting Relations
Hookup culture is arguably a new phenomenon that is occurring rampantlyamong college students across the country. Hook ups are described assexual relationships that occur between people who are outsideromantic or committed relationships (Allisonet al., 11).Hook-ups involve numerous behaviors, ranging from oral sex topenetrative sex. The noncommittal sexual interactions do not implyany impending relationships, and the nature of the relationshipbetween hook up partners does not change after sexual activities. Inthese encounters, the motivation for the hook ups is simply sexualsatisfaction. About 60% of college students in America report tohaving some form of previous experience with hook ups (Allisonet al., 13).Therefore, there is great concern that the hookup culture mightaffect the nature of relationships in the future.
Thehookup culture has affected negatively how individuals relate intheir future relationships. Young people engaging in hookups do verylittle to learn the best ways of dating and being in a relationshipthat demands accountability (Ellis71).In many cases, college students pretend to be dating for years andyet all they manage to achieve is convincing each other to have sex.Dating is an acquired skill therefore, the hookup culture deniesthem the ability to acquire the vital skills of dating such ascompromise and patience. At the end of many years of college hookups,young people have no idea what is involved in dating. Therefore, theyexperience many difficulties when they finally want to get intoserious relationships. Hook up specialists have trouble sustainingserious relationships especially when both parties have had previoushookup experiences. Casual sex simplifies the definition ofrelationships, making any commitments unrealistic (Ruppet al., 35).
Supportersof hook up culture say that its random nature makes it desirable.They often cite the thrill that people encounter in hook ups as thereason why people should desire to engage in hookups. However, therandom nature of the hookup culture exposes individuals to poordecision making. When deciding whom to engage in a casual sexualactivity, people do not question their choices objectively (Ellis45).In many cases, girls will go for the most handsome, athletic menwhile boys will go for the most beautiful girls available. Therefore,the decision does not put to question the values of a sexual partnerand the level of morality associated with the person. In fact, mostof the hookupstakeplacein parties and other functions involving alcohol and other drugs thatmay impede the accuracy of thinking. Under these circumstances, thedecisions are irrational and often people do not consider theconsequences of the decisions they make (Monto608).Later in life, there is a high possibility that college students willstill make random decisions when choosing their lifetime partners. Insuch cases, the relationships do not last after discovering that oneended up with the wrong partner.
Peoplesay that hook ups help us explore our bodies and discover new things.The argument here is that one gets to meet multiple partners andlearn different things from different people. However, I disagreebecause hook ups impede personal audits. In normal relationshipsinvolving some level of commitment and romance, individuals engage inpersonal audits where they seek to determine their strengths andweaknesses in a relationship setting. Hookups prevent us fromdiscovering who we are and what we want. Being in a romanticrelationship provides a platform for experimenting our emotions bytaking our bodies and mind through the reality of life. We candiscover our undesirable characters through the experiences of ourpartners and seek to rectify them (Monto607).Consequently, we see the undesirable characters in our partners andhelp them to become better or abandon the relationship because weknow exactly what we want. Hookups, on the other hand, help us learnnothing about our characters as well as tell us nothing about what wedesire from our ideal partners. It, therefore, amounts to timewastage since there is neither learning nor maturity.
Hookup proponents may argue that hey help people deal with stressfulsituations.However, hookups happening as a means to an end areunhealthy. Studies show that the majority of people engaging inhookups have hidden issues that prompt them to engage in random sex.A significant proportion of women who have random sex may beexperiencing emotional issues such as stress and depression. Again,some hook up among women are because of past acts of sexual abuses.Therefore, people engage in hookups to satisfy their short-termdesires such as running away from the real problems that they face(LaBrieet al., 64).This affects the quality of future relationships because people getthe wrong perceptions about how to deal with problems as well as thereason for having partners. Therefore, young men and women who seekto address their emotional issues through hook ups end up not solvingthe root of their problems. They carry their unresolved issues intofuture relationships thus impeding emotional progress. Consequently,hook ups are simply a means to getting an orgasm. Therefore, thesexual partners are reduced to objects. This may affect futurerelationships since partners may fail to differentiate between anintimate partner and having a sexual partner.
Hookupshave no restrictions regarding the possible number of sexual partnersthat one can have. Since there are no emotional commitments betweenindividuals, going from one partner to another is simply part of the“fun.” This nature of hookups leads to a negative wiring of thebrain, where individuals fail to understand the fundamentalprinciples of healthy relationships. It will be difficult forindividuals used to engage in hookups to stick to one partner.Hookups instill in us the culture of unfaithfulness (Allisonet al., 201).Worst of all, they make us think that it is not wrong to havemultiple partners. The simplicity of this argument impedes thedevelopment of beneficial relationships where partners can befaithful to each other. In this regard, emotional commitments mayappear as imprisonment especially for young people. Having the wrongattitude about the need to be committed to one partner is thebeginning of the disintegration of healthy romantic relationships(Montoet al., 605).
Hookups are not the same as normal romantic relationships. Therefore,when hook up proponents argue that they lead to the same experiences,it is highly inaccurate. Romantic relationships demand theintegration of the body and the mind for people to find common groundfor romance (LaBrieet al., 62).The integration of the body is through sexual contact whereas theintegration of the mind takes place through love. However, hook upsonly involve the interaction of our bodies because the goal is toderive sexual satisfaction. There is no love involved in theserelationships. Therefore, the mind does not take part in the routine.Individuals who have had years of hookups may have troubleintegrating their bodies and the mind to shape healthy relationships(LaBrieet al., 63). Therefore, partners will not be fully involved in relationshipssince they do not understand the essence of bodily and mentalcommitment. In fact, relationships will crumble not because partnersignore their roles in the relationships but because they do notunderstand what they are needed to do.
Peoplelose focus on what is important in life when they engage in hookups.We fail to realize that sex is not the goal of life. As we spend timelooking for our next hook ups, we fail to think about what we shoulddo with our lives. We livewithno direction, devoting the majority of our time drinking alcohol andother harmful things. Therefore, in hook ups, the presence of arelationship has to be sustained by intoxication or some form ofadrenal (Allisonet al., 203).Our minds will be programmed to think of a relationship or sex onlywhen we are high. It is likely that people will lack the motivationto be in constructive relationships when the relationships do notinvolve the adventures of hook ups.
Inconclusion, it is quite clear to me that hook ups are detrimental tothe nature of relationships between intimate partners. Theexperimental exploits of hook ups dilute the principles ofresponsibility and love which are critical in sustainingrelationships. These casual relationships oversimplify the essence ofsex as the ultimate connector between individuals who are incommitted relationships.
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Ellis,Bret Easton. "Generation Wuss." VanityFair 26(2014).
LaBrie,Joseph W., et al. "Hooking up in the college context: Theevent-level effects of alcohol use and partner familiarity on hookupbehaviors and contentment." Journalof Sex Research 51.1(2014): 62-73.
Monto,Martin A., and Anna G. Carey. "A new standard of sexualbehavior? Are claims associated with the “hookup culture”supported by general social survey data?" TheJournal of Sex Research 51.6(2014): 605-615.
Rupp,Leila J., et al. "Queer Women in the Hookup Scene Beyond theCloset?" Gender& Society 28.2(2014): 212-235.