RADICAL PARENTING: How Facebook Changed Teen Dating

keyboard with emoticonsby Vanessa Van Petten

Seventeen magazine recently conducted a study amongst their readers. The results are very interesting for our parent readers. The study polled 10,000 guys and girls ages 16 to 21. Here is how the teenage romance process on Facebook goes:

1. Adding a new crush as a friend = one week after meeting (79% of teens)

2. Stalking their new crush’s profile = Once per day after adding them as a friend (60% of people, but 40% check in on their crush several times a day).

3. Deciding to date = 43% of girls would decide not to date someone based on their Facebook profile, compared to 33% of guys.

4. Deciding to announce their new girl- or boyfriend = 17% of guys don’t share their status, compared to 12% of girls. (Fifty percent of girls get a kick out of the status change — one-third of guys agree; 24% of guys find it unnecessary, compared to 17% of girls.) 

5. Breaking up = 10% of people have been dumped over Facebook. (Seventy-three percent of people keep their exes as friends.)

I thought this study was a fascinating look into how Facebook has seriously affected the ‘flow’ of a typical teenage relationship. We have completely new methods of flirting (poking), researching (profile stalking) and bonding (updating statuses together).

Additionally, there are new ways to get hurt: when your significant other doesn’t to change their status for you, when you’re dumped via Facebook and more. The positive side is that, though we may lose some of the in-person social skills, we are replacing them with online ones.

This is part of Radical Parenting’s Science of Family series. If you would like to read more articles on the scientific research and studies behind relationships, families and teens, please visit their Science of Families page for tips and updated research.

Vanessa Van PettenVanessa Van Petten, youthologist and teen author of the parenting book “You’re Grounded!,” manages RadicalParenting.com, a parenting blog written by 119 teen writers, ages 12-20 to help parents and adults get an honest and open view into the world and mind of youth. Van Petten’s work and blog have been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Teen Vogue, CNN, Fox News, Real Housewives of Orange County and much more!  Radical Parenting

One response to “RADICAL PARENTING: How Facebook Changed Teen Dating”

  1. Katherine Oinonen

    Love your blog. Very straight forward. Keeping it bookmarked and will keep checking back regularly. Best wishes.

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