How are high schoolers dating these days?

I have a son who is 15. He has a very close friend but not a girlfriend (yet). I am wondering how young teens are dating now? I have been told that 'group dates' are the in thing now. Is that the case? Do couples still go on dinner / catch a movie type of dates? These two are concentrating on being friends first which I am encouraging. Any suggestions?


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Most Helpful Girl

  • From what I am seeing, there is a whole lot of confusion going on these days in teens and young adults.

    1. They are not group dating, they are hanging out in groups and then wondering if their "crush" likes them or just sees them as a friend.

    2. They are calling someone of the opposite gender that they really like a friend and then getting hurt when their "friend" starts dating or talking about someone else. They are fearful of rejection so they act like a friend and hope the other person will seal the deal. Usually they end up angry and confused because the other person actually believed they were friends, not some sort of lead up to a relationship.

    3. They "hang out" instead of dating, which if they do this at each others' homes, culminates in casual sex. Then, usually the girl, doesn't understand why casual sex doesn't lead to a relationship. Well, it doesn't.

    4. Casual sex and no-strings sex is glamorized as the ultimate. It is cooler than cool to be able to have sex without feelings. Of course, it doesn't really work like that and one or the other catches feelings that are not returned.

    Good old fashioned dating, where you made it clear that you liked the other person romantically and opposite gender friendships really were not that common because everyone knew the scoop, usually one or the other wants to get with their "friend", that is the way to go. No one likes rejection or having your interests not returned, but there is just no way to get around this, so better put it out there pretty quickly than go along pretending your friends or cool with casual sex.

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What Girls Said 9

  • Depends. Especially on their group of friends because they have an influence on them. They hang out either with friends or alone. Sex, drugs/alcohol, parties happens a lot more than what you're talking about. It was rare to find anyone in a serious relationship at the time.

    It's sweet that he wants to take things slow with the girl he likes. If it's a mutual thing then there is really no need to rush. A lot of girls feel rushed/pressured into situations. If they both agree to take things slow then they will know on their own when it's right because they have selected to go at their own pace. It's something they that will work on together and if they decide to be more than friends or friends with benefits then cool. I would just make sure he has some condoms or something if the occasion arises. Teach him the importance of respect, control, and birth control. hahaha. =P hope it helps ^_^

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    • Thanks for the feedback. I am glad they are concentrating on being friends. I was out to get laid as much as possible when I was a teen. It was shallow and not very meaningful. So far, he is on a much better path than I was. My wife and I would like to take the two of them to see Frankenweenie and dinner next weekend while we remain a discrete distance away. Sound too prudish?

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    • awwwww. hahhahah. cute. Well I'm sure he doesn't want to become a parent anytime soon either. If he doesn't think it's a big deal I would make sure he knows that it is and maybe let him baby sit a new born so he knows it's not easy. XD He sounds about old enough to go off and hang out at the mall and be dropped off.

    • Get/stay as involved as he will let you, without being overbearing. Meet his friends, both guys and girls-you'll get a feel for who he's hanging out with and whether or not you are comfortable with them alone.

      Knowing how you feel about him dating, having a girlfriend, his friends may seem "corny" to him but it will be beneficial in the long run. Definitely educating him on sex/std's, abstinence and early pregnancies would be good just because of the world we live in now.

  • Mostly group dates. It looks a lot like friends hanging out and then... well it gets physical. I didn't date in high school but my sister is, she's your son's age. Right now she's dating the neighbour's son (at least I think, I don't keep track). They went to an amusement park with the boy's mother and regularly steal my horse to go for a trail ride with other kids from this area. Location and where you are can affect how dating happens in HS. We don't have malls or movie theaters. We have county fairs (it was a huge deal if some guy invites you to go to the fair with him) and parties in the gravel pits. As long as I don't find out those to have been going to the pits, I'm not too worried.

    Just stay as involved as you can be, make sure your son is educated and knows what the consequences are. Limit alone time, as in they stay in the living room within sight. Just keep encouraging the friendship.

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  • Children are "dating" younger and younger unfortunately. I say children because my daughter (in junior high) says her friends have "serious boyfriends" but that really just means kissing, holding hands, etc. (to my knowledge nothing more, but I'm not their mother)



    group dates seem to work best because they are with more individuals, getting to know them all at once rather than singling their mind on just one. Once they get more serious you'll find them going alone to movies/dinner/etc.

    I personally would be concerned with alone time, but all you can do is educate, explain your concerns, Kids are going to do what they are going to do.

    I think its great that you are concerned, trying to be aware and encouraging the friendship first. That's all they really need at this age.

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    • You too seem to have a genuine concern for your daughter. Your advice about the 'alone time' is well noted. As weird as it sounds, I want to like the girls who my son is involved with. One day, I may have a daughter in law. I don't want her to dislike us the way my mother-in-law and I don't get along. If I had a daughter, I would probably have already lost my mind by now.

  • I don't think high schoolers really date anymore.. They just hang out and have sex.. Not all the time, but teens are getting sexually active at younger ages these days, which is sad when they get pregnant and struggle to live their lives.. Just educate your son on what's right and wrong, how to protect himself and hope he makes the right decisions :)

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  • im commenting so I can keep track on what pple say. good question

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  • I'm 17, so I suppose I'm close in age to your son, although different country I started "dating" when I was around 13-14, group dates do happen but it's not really just that.

    Teens don't really "go to dinner" or anything like that, movie...maybe sometimes but not really that often, it's mostly just hanging out and stuff like that.

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    • Would you provide a few more examples of 'stuff like that' as you put it?

    • What is the real question that you're asking? I kinda feel like you're basically wondering if they'll perhaps be doing a lot more than just dating? If that's what you're really asking then yes, kids your sons age are thinking about that, whether it'll actually happen is another matter.

  • Text from 16 year old

    "Wanna come to my place?"= Wanna screw?

    My generation no longer believes in dates, really. Girls will willingly put out and guys think all girls are like this.

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    • I have found that out here on GAG. Girls now try to pressure guys into sex. Let me tell you something, back in 1982, that concept was definitely not around. It is really sad. Sex can lead to so many bad things at a young age that can screw up your life. I am living proof of it. Was almost a father at age 17 which is why I hope my son is not as stupid as his old man was.

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    • uh yeah, great generalization, but girls aren't out to do anything. There's a world beyond GaG

      Most teen parents I know were put in the position because of the guy pressuring the girl. Most girls I know who put out, do so because they're seeking male validation or they've boyfriends who give them ultimatums and it's just the norm. Guys like easy girls, girls are happy to oblige nowadays

    • As much I wish it wasn't so, I have to say that you right. Fortunately, these two seem to be more concerned with being friends than anything else. I know it won't stay that way, but I am glad to see it starting out this way.

  • coming from high school make sure you had the talk with your son because 12-18 year olds in middle school and high school are having sex a lot more now! I have met a lot of freshman (14-15) year old who already lost their virginity

    but if he is a good boy which not all boys in high school are bad then movie dates,group dates where multiple couples go to movies or out to dinner is popular or they chill at each others houses (which is where most engage in intercourse) so be careful!

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  • I am wondering about the same thing. I have a 14 year old daughter. She just asked out to homecoming dance. She told me he is just a friend. I think it is more of a group dating.

    I am not sure how to deal with high school. She is busy at school with classes and after school activities. Yet I am worried. I keep thinking " I hope she is ok" or " I wonder whaynshenis doing?"

    She is good student and doesn't have a boyfriend. But as a mom I always am worried.

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What Guys Said 6

  • At that age, (Even at older ages now), dating has become less formal. What it simply looks like is two friends hanging out. Watching a movie, going for a walk, grabbing some food or ice-cream. Playing a sport or game, watching TV, surfing the internet, getting coffee.

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  • Read this website and you will get an education...

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    • I joined GAG over a year ago to do just that. I have had to put up with being called 'perv' and about everything else since I am 46. I am honestly looking for guidance to help my son have good relationships with girls - something that I definitely didn't do in high school.

    • aww lol

  • The idea of "formal dates" doesn't happen a lot in high school these days. Most of the times the dates involving hanging out somewhere such as someone's house, the mall, skate park, beach/river/lake, etc., in a group setting.

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  • I started dating when I was like 17 I think? Anyways, most of them were group dates, it's more trusting that way and feels safer for the girls and everyone knows each other so there's less tension and everything. Movies stink, went on a movie date once and the focus is on the movie, not the person you want to get to know. I suggest mutual friend group dates doing stuff like ice skating, roller blading, kite flying, maybe dinner at a local pizza place, it should be creative and fun.

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  • Eh...I left High-school a year ago, I think a lot of it is the same as it was when you went. The same place you probably got your first kiss & lost your virginity. But yes when I was there I had a sweetheart and we did do things like go to the movies & dinner every month with the money I had saved up.

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  • I'm 15, I have a girlfriend right now. We mostly hang out after school, there usually isn't any movie going or any other fancy date unless it's like a school dance.

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    • May I ask what the physical involvement is at this point? My son has a very close friend, but I think the two of them are just that. I am fairly certain that they have not even kissed. When I was his age, I was no longer a virgin, so he has avoided my mistake up to this point. Have the two of you went out for dinner with her or your parents?

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