Dating and romantic relationships

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The 35% of teens who say they are either currently involved with a romantic partner or have ever dated, hooked up with or had a romantic relationship with someone will serve as the focus of the remainder of this report.

When we refer to “teen daters,” “teens with relationship experience” or “teens with dating experience” we are referring to this roughly one-third of teenagers who are currently in some type of relationship or have been at some point in the past.

At each stage, there is often a decision (sometimes more thoughtfully arrived at than others) to move forward or to end the relationship. It not only means something different to everyone, but it also looks and feels different to everyone.That's why there are so many different types of relationships — so each person can find the best fit for their individual lifestyle, personality, and concept of love.The couple can choose to be completely sexless, or the asexual partner can "compromise" by engaging in sex occasionally under certain circumstances, or partners can experiment with "pseudosexual behavior," such as cuddling, to find an arrangement that works for both.Dating and experience with romance are relatively common – but far from universal – among teens ages 13 to 17.

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