Monday, September 26, 2005

Dating trends in America in the 21st Century

Dating trends all over America are changing rapidly. Various internet dating sites were referred to and this paper discusses the findings and conclusions drawn from the research. All of the sources referred to suit well for all age groups, with a wide variety of options to land up an ideal date for both men and women.

Newspapers are a less desirable option than internet. Internet provides the seeker with an efficient option of searching for the right date. It is also the fastest mean to communicate with the date compared to newspaper which is way slower and also less revealing. With newspapers you are likely to reach very limited number of audience, limited to your city or state or town.

Internet is also a cheaper option among the two. Various sites allow users to make a profile for free whereas they have to pay for giving their ads in classified newspapers. With instant messaging users can instantly get in contact with your date. People are also very open to posting their pictures on a dating site in contrast to newspapers where posting pictures is a rarity. This is an important aspect that is going to tilt the decision in favor of internet as many people seeking a date gave huge importance to how he/she looked.

It can be seen that women have become more active with online dating and men have shifted to a more passive approach. After going through various profiles it was noticed that women were less hesitant to give away their phone numbers, screen names, email addresses, and various contact details as compared to the male side.

Many men believe that they have become more mature with dating than some women are. Men in the new dating game feel more like hunted, and at the mercy of a new genre of a super-woman they don’t know how to handle. Men are finding it difficult to understand what qualities to they actually crave for in a woman and the whole dating scene is quite confusing to them and to some degree threatening.

Women on the other hand have asked out a man. Until recently, a woman who asked a man to go out with her might have been given a bad reputation for being forward or un-ladylike. Now, women call men they are attracted to and ask them out almost as regularly as men call women. This aspect was clearly noticed in their profiles.

I chose to concentrate my search on woman seeking man and man seeking woman category. Everybody has something specific that they are looking for in the opposite sex. For females, the top characteristic desired is to have a good sense of humor. Second is a sense of caring, and a tie for third is honesty and an interesting personality. Males are looking for women who are funny, brainy, open-minded, good looking, and honest (naming only a few qualifications).

It was also observed that some people believed that God fits perfectly in a relationship. Hence, they felt that it was wrong for them to sleepover with their boyfriend/girlfriend. Also, smoking and drinking was an option that was undesirable for someone religious seeking a date. These people also preferred to date someone who was from the same ethnic origin. So, it can be assumed that they were probably looking for a life-long commitment.

It was also seen that both the genders were very vocal about there specific interests in music, sports, books, movies etc. This shows that lot of people nowadays are searching for a date in terms of common interest which would consequently give them a lot to discuss and get to know each other better.

Thus the internet has revolutionized the way people search for dates. People have become more revealing and this has helped them in finding the right date. Internet dating has given an excellent option for traditionally reserved people who were not ready to express themselves in public. With internet they are able to find someone who suits their culture and way of life.

The role of women has changed over the past 20-30 years and this has reflected in the dating scene too. Instead of man paying for the date it’s the woman who is also chipping in. Thus this was a very prominent change.

Dating has come a long way over the past several years. Many changes have reshaped our views and interpretation of going out with someone.

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