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Where Do You Stand on Hooking Up?

By , 18, Staff Writer Originally Published: June 16, 2014 Revised: July 3, 2014

Recently, while my friends and I were hanging out, one friend told us the story of how she hooked up with someone at a concert. I began to congratulate her, but to my surprise, some of my friends didn’t feel the same. So I began to wonder why? What do different people think about hooking up?

It’s common for teens to want to hook up with each other. Hooking up can mean anything from making out to having sex, depending on who you ask, and different people have different takes on whether or not hooking up with someone you are not in a committed relationship with is OK. Some people don’t believe you have to be dating someone if you want to get physical with them. For some teens, you can date someone and never have sex, and for others it’s OK to have sex with someone and never date them. There’s nothing wrong with either choice.

For some teens, you can date someone and never have sex, and for others it’s OK to have sex with someone and never date them. There’s nothing wrong with either choice.

Safe and Consensual Hook Ups

As far as I’m concerned, hooking up is OK so long as everyone understands the nature of the relationship, and everyone involved is OK with it.

Lyndsay 18, from Scotch Plains, NJ says, “As long as everybody’s having a good time, and it’s safe and consensual, knock yourself out.”

Maryl, 15, from Melbourne, FL agrees and says, “I don’t see a problem with it, for the most part. As long as both people are single and give consent and they both understand whether it’s a hook up or a relationship, there’s nothing wrong with the occasional hook up.”

For teens like Maryl and Lyndsay it’s about communicating and making sure both partners are on the same page when it comes to defining whether a relationship is committed or casual.

Hooking Up Isn’t for Everyone

Other teens believe hooking up isn’t for them because it doesn’t provide the same emotional security they get from relationships. Some people believe that hooking up leads to heartache and it could potentially lead to one person taking advantage of another person.

Kevin, 16, from Scotch Plains, NJ says, “I think [having sex with someone] is OK if you are in a relationship with the other person. [It] then has some meaning behind it rather than hooking up with someone you have no feelings for.”

Teens like Kevin believe in only getting physical if you are in a relationship. They believe feelings can potentially get hurt otherwise, which is why hooking up isn’t right for everyone.

Hooking Up Double Standards

While whether or not someone is comfortable hooking up with a partner outside of a committed relationship is up to each person, there’s no denying that people are often judged when they hook up. Generally, the people who get judged the most are girls. There is a double standard where guys are usually praised for their “conquest” while girls are often met with negative comments. These sexist double standards oppress girls and shame them for expressing their sexuality.

Ultimately, it’s about doing what makes you happy, whether that means hooking up with a partner, committing to one person in a relationship or staying happily single. And whether you choose to engage in sexual behaviors in our outside of a relationship, there is the risk of getting a sexually transmitted disease (STD) and/or facing an unintended pregnancy. It’s important to know that STDs and pregnancy are preventable by using birth control and/or practicing safer sex.

Remember to stay true to yourself, and ignore other people’s judgments because the only person who should have a say in how you feel about hooking up is you.

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