’ You all decide to see a movie and you’ll all get separate drives there.
You usually don’t go out one-on-one.” And there are some other interesting developments in this brave new world, including the fact that teens feel freer to put off sex, and they see love, marriage and kids as best left for the (fairly) distant future.
“If you pretended to be somebody else, your friends would go, ‘Whoa, why are you acting so weird?
’” Also, there’s no need to pre-arrange that cellphone call to get you out of a date you’re not enjoying.
In their group of eight friends, the four boys and four girls are paired off into couples, but prefer to spend their time all together, sitting around and talking at one another’s houses, grabbing something to eat, going to a movie. “We just feel better when we’re together,” Catherine explains.“At this age we’re always fighting with our parents, so we need to feel we’re loved.” She’s quick to add that while she and her boyfriend love each other, they’re not . ” This is the new world of teen dating, and it can be almost unrecognizable to many parents.Long gone is the tradition where a boy phones a girl on Tuesday to ask her out for Saturday, picks her up at her house, meets the parents, pays for dinner and a show, and sees her home.“We call it group dating, and we believe it can be really healthy and protective,” says Jennifer Connolly, a psychology professor at York University in Toronto who specializes in teen relationships.Connolly, who has two adolescent daughters of her own, says that group dating is growing in popularity everywhere, including China and India.Eleven-year-old Charles, a bright, sociable, engaging sixth-grader in the Toronto area, was shocked to hear last spring that a buddy’s school in a nearby town would be hosting a grade-five dance.