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Today’s teens are flirting in an entirely different landscape.
Sure, they are still flirting in hallways and movie theaters but they are also flirting over text message, social media, and apps specifically designed for flirting and dating.
One couple she knows chatted constantly on Facebook for more than two months—even though they saw each other every day at school—before the boy got up the nerve to ask out the girl.
Connecting online is appealing, kids say, because it’s easier to present yourself in a different light than if you were meeting someone in person.
It was late fall during my freshman year at college.
My friends and I were piled on my dorm bed, staring at the phone and willing it to ring.
As with most parenting issues concerning teens, one of the best things we can do is to talk to our teens about the possible dangers of dating online, experts say.
According to that story, “students initiate relationships online to meet new people, avoid stressful in-person meetings and hide their dating lives from their parents.” That’s certainly the case for some kids, according to my 17-year-old.
It’s no surprise to learn that 81 percent of teens use social media, according to data from The Pew Research Center.
Sure, teens still meet in the same ways that kids always have, but the low social risks associated with flirting online have made that option more acceptable to some than trying to talk face to face in a crowded school hallway.
She says that teens she knows often meet online by contacting each other through Facebook and by commenting on each other’s Twitter feeds and Instagram photos. If that person “likes” you back, it’s time for a digital chat.
Or they play around on Tinder, that popular matchmaking app that allows users to find potential matches based on their proximity to each other, a couple photos and their common interests. “If you want to talk to someone, but you’re too embarrassed to do it in real life, it’s easy to do it over the Internet instead of face to face,” she says.