A lot of people have different views regarding hookup culture. “It’s great, it’s horrible, it’s this, it’s that.” Within a college setting, this controversial topic is incredibly common.
As a member of a relatively younger generation, I think that people are entitled to choose how they go about their romantic life without any judgment. Many people don’t want to commit to a full-time relationship during an experimental or stressful stage of their life, which is perfectly reasonable. This time period is for us to have fun and meet all different kinds of people without any rules! “Hooking up” also allows people to get a sense of what they like and dislike in future partners and even explore possible options.
However, with every good, comes some bad. And because the amount of negatives clearly outweighs the positives in this case, I personally wouldn’t participate in hookup culture.
As I previously mentioned, hookup culture can be a great way to receive attention without being committed, it’s very often the main cause for hurt too. Some people may think that they want something with no strings attached, but end up catching feelings and suffering when the feelings aren’t reciprocated. Oftentimes, people will fall into a pattern of hooking up because it means something to them, but it sadly won’t to the other person. This creates a vicious element of toxicity and emotional harm.
An additional downfall is the disrespect that may arise. Because you may not be familiar enough with your partner, there is no mutual understanding to keep the interactions to yourselves. Very frequently, rumors spread around about who did what with who and personal details are now known to the public. As someone who is a big advocate for privacy, I wouldn’t want other people knowing my business, so this is definitely a huge deal-breaker for me.
Continually, hookup culture reveals an incredible separation within gender stereotypes. It’s somehow normalized for girls to gain a negative connotation from hookup culture while men are idolized for it. I’ll never understand this, since if both parties are consenting and participating in doing something together, I’m not sure why some people are ostracized more than others. Why is that one person is chastised and the other is patted on the back?
However, one of the biggest problems that can arise from hookup culture is disease transmission, as one in four college students has an STD. Due to this, it is imperative that every interaction is done so in a safe, protective way. But this does not always happen, especially in drunken, thoughtless encounters or non-exclusive relationships. Even in sober situations, how are you to trust a person you don’t know all that well when they tell you they are STD-free? Furthermore, the transmitter might not even know that they may have an STD due to lack of testing, because most 15–25-year-olds have never received an STI test.
So, even if one might think they are being told the truth, there is still a chance for them to be positive in one of eight sexually transmitted diseases, four of which are incurable.
With attachment issues, privacy breaches, gender stereotypes and possible disease transmission, hookup culture is definitely not for me. But for the ones who do participate, I certainly bear no bad feelings. As long as you’re staying safe and being considerate of the other partner, I say have fun and make the most of your youth!