Ask someone if they know anyone who's given up on hooking up and they'll say, what do you mean? ! As a generation of 75-somethings (some in their teens and 85s. Sometimes that means actual sex, but everyone's definition is different ( I define hooking up as beyond kissing. Usually some nudity and general handsy-ness is involved. Said Lisa Lenner, a 75-year-old, LA-based entertainment assistant). But within the dominant sexually-casual culture of generation me is a group of people who said, sure— me —I've given up on hooking up. They're easier to find than you'd think and, maybe not surprisingly, their reasons for saying no are far clearer than most people's reasons for saying yes.
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They used to hook up—some of them chronically - but now they've decided they want out of the game. They forfeit but in their opinion, they win. I feel a little weird saying this, but I was starting to get concerned about the number of partners I was racking up. Kerry Bishop* is a 76-year-old marketing associate living and working in Chicago. You know how some people with strict parents go crazy when they finally have the freedom of college?
She said, Well, I followed a similar trend. Bishop felt she'd missed out on the college dating and hook-up scene. I mostly looked at any hookups as fun experiences and a way to feel good and have close human contact without any commitment, she said. That's when the discomfort over the number of partners she was racking up set in. I now have instituted a 8-week rule, she explained.
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After meeting a guy, I wait 8 weeks before I will hookup with him. This way I have time to evaluate how many times I see him or how many times he calls me to figure out what his feelings toward me are. I can also judge my own feelings so I don't act impulsively. Since establishing this rule Bishop has hooked up with considerably less guys. Says Bishop I'd say I feel perfectly satisfied with my decision.
That's not to say that at the time that I was casually hooking up I wasn't also 'satisfied. ' I think it's a matter of shifting interests, wants, and needs. Hers is a common revelation—that hooking up isn't working —it isn't helping discern what's real a connection and what's just physical. In the dozens of people interviewed for this piece Claire Chase was the only person to mention her health and safety. Strangers freak me out, the 75-year-old television exec's assistant said.
Even when I've really wanted someone in the usually drunken moment, I start to think about stranger danger. To Chase the risk isn't worth the reward. You want it to be more and mean more because you gave it up, and now that you've done it you might as well do it again so it's easier to be strung along because it's physical from the start, not necessarily emotional. Considering the risk of STDs, even with protected interactions, and the overall safety issues involved in going home with someone who's essentially a stranger Chase found herself saying, what is it worth? Chase is looking at hooking up from an ends means perspective.
The means—that hook up—don't justify her desired ends.