Valentine’s Day is behind us, but romance is still on many of our minds.
Whether you’re thinking about how amazing your significant other is or you’re grateful that the accursed holiday is over, love is still in the air. (For example, we all celebrate love – romantic and platonic – on campus with #UWGBLOVE.)
In today’s world, romance might be a morning text, or a snapchat streak, and it makes us wonder: When did love become electronic? To answer this, we’re taking a trip down Lover’s Lane, to look at dating throughout the decades.
Starting in the 1950s, dating stuck to more “traditional” roles: Girls waited on the guys to make the first move, pick them up and pay for the date. According Teenage Dating in the 1950s, after gaining parental approval, and several dates at the local diner, a guy might propose going steady and finally get that first kiss.
1960s and 70s
The shy first kiss from the 50s was a stark contrast to the wild, free love of the 60s and 70s. During the “Make Love Not War Era, ideas and romance were shared freely. Dating through the Decades cited the birth of feminism with the decreasing marriage rate as a turning point. With the invention of birth control, dating went on sabbatical and sexual partners seemed to be traded like baseball cards.
1980s and 90s
With new technology in the 80s and 90s, dating got updated. According to Redbookmag: If a guy was interested, he called you on a landline to talk and ask you out on a date. Receiving a mixtape was a sign that someone was really into you. “That sense of hopeful possibility when you saw a blinking answering machine light is gone forever, replaced by the somehow more anxiety-producing three-dot ‘he’s texting’ notification” (2015). As technology started to take over, we saw less face-to-face interaction and more reliance on technology.
An article from Bustle.com talks about six early 2000 dating trends that we need to bring back today. These trends include calling, leaving messages on answering machines, making a song playlist for your one and only, three-way calling your crush, making your intentions clear and actually knowing your relationship status!
It isn’t shocking news that dating has changed a lot over the years and even more-so in the recent years. It’s hard to pinpoint exactly how dating has changed because it’s one big blur of swiping left or right, “hanging out,” and a lot of “Netflix and Chill.” Today, we rely on technology in almost every way, and that’s not always a good thing in dating.
Romance is electronic. With one-in-three marriages starting online, according to USA Today, the landscape of love has been altered considerably. Love is at everyone’s fingertips these days with apps like Tinder and Bumble.
From the tentative kisses in the 50s to the love ballads of mixtapes in the 80s, who knows where dating is headed next. All any of us know is that rules have been established in the realm of dating, yet love in the modern age is still aloof to many who seek it. It’s important to look back at what dating was to understand what love could be today. Technology is here to stay, but who wouldn’t mind getting a mixtape in today’s age.
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