Research to help you understand the “hook-up” culture on campus

This study is from the Institute for American Values. It was done by Elizabeth Marquardt, a political and religious liberal.

The PDF of study is here.

If you download the 88 page PDF, the first few pages are an executive summary.

I’d been exposed to this research before when I read Dr. Miriam Grossmann’s book “Unprotected”. (Boundless review here) I just got Dr. Miriam Grossmann’s new book “You’re Teaching My Child What?” and I also got Elizabeth Marquardt’s new book “Between Two Worlds: The Inner Lives of Children of Divorce”. I guess that Grossmann is also liberal politically and religiously. I read these kinds of books so that I can constrain my choices based on the knowledge of the damage that sin causes – I can’t choose to be bad if I convince myself about how much it costs before the choice arises. Knowledge binds the will. And I want my will to be bound by knowledge. I want to take emotions and the desire for happiness here and now right out of my decision-making.

Anyway, there are a couple of things that really struck me about this IAV study on hooking-up.

First, this one from p. 15:

A notable feature of hook ups is that they almost always occur when both participants are drinking or drunk.

A Rutgers University student observed, “You always hear people say, oh my gosh, I was so drunk, I hooked up with so and so…” Perhaps not surprisingly, many noted that being drunk helped to loosen one’s inhibitions and make it easier to hook up. A number of students noted that being drunk could later serve as your excuse for the hook up. A Yale University student said, “Some people like hook up because they’re drunk or use being drunk as an excuse to hook up.” A New York University student observed, “[Alcohol is] just part of an excuse, so that you can say, oh, well, I was drinking.”

A Rutgers University student commented, “If you’re drinking a lot it’s easier to hook up with someone… [and] drugs, it’s kind of like a bonding thing… and then if you hook up with them and you don’t want to speak to them again, you can always blame it on the drinking or the drugs.”

Other women observed that being drunk gives a woman license to act sexually interested in public in ways that would not be tolerated if she were sober. For instance, a University of Michigan student said, “Girls are actually allowed to be a lot more sexual when they are drunk…”

A University of Chicago junior observed, “One of my best friends… sometimes that’s her goal when we go out. Like she wants to get drunk so I guess she doesn’t have to feel guilty about [hooking up].”

Some reported that drinking had led them to do things they later regretted. A University of Virginia student said, “My last random hook up was last October and it was bad. I was drunk and I just regretted it very much.”

And this one from p. 30 on the effects of hooking-up on their future commitments:

A few women did see an unambiguous connection between present relationships and future marriage.

[…]Many women either saw little or no connection between present and future relationships, or their understanding of this connection was curiously flat. A student at New York University said, “[The present and the future are] connected because I will still have the same values and principles that I have now, but I just won’t be single anymore.”A number of women said that the present and the future are connected because whatever heartache or confusion they experience now gives them lessons for the future.

A University of Michigan student said, “Early relationships prepare you for marriage because it’s like, oh, what type of person do I want to be with? Oh, I’ve had these bad experiences. Or, I’ve learned from this relationship that I should do this and I shouldn’t do this.”

A sophomore at Howard University said that “I am kind of learning from a lot of the mistakes that I have made.” At a further extreme, some women saw their future marriage as the reason to experiment widely in the present. A Rutgers University student said,“I think hooking up with different people and seeing what you like and don’t like is a good idea. Because eventually you’re going to have to… marry someone and I’d just like to know that I experienced everything.”

Although it is admirable to take risks and learn from one’s mistakes, these women would probably find it difficult to explain how having your heart broken a few or even many times in your early years — or trying to separate sex from feeling, as in hooking up — is good preparation for a trusting and happy marriage later on.

And on p. 42, we learn what women think marriage is and isn’t for:

For instance, in the on-campus interviews one student complained, “[With] marriage…you have to debate everything… Why do you need a piece of paper to bond a person to you? …But I know if I don’t get married I’ll probably feel like… [a] lonely old woman… If anything, I’d get married [because of] that.”

This student went on to say that she would be satisfied to live with a man, but added that, if the man was committed to her, he would offer to marry her, and that this was the kind of commitment that she wanted. A student at the University of Washington said,“I don’t want to get married right after I graduate from college. I just think that would stunt my growth in every way that there is. I would like to be in a very steady, committed relationship with a guy.”

And on p. 44, we learn that they like co-habitation, which increases the risk of divorce by about 50% (but they don’t know that):

In the national survey, 58 percent of the respondents agreed that “It is a good idea to live with someone before deciding to marry him.” This belief often coexists with a strong desire to marry, because it was embraced by 49 percent of the respondents who strongly agreed that marriage was a very important goal for them.

[…]Women we interviewed on campus reflected a similar range of attitudes about cohabitation. Some women thought that cohabitation was a good way to test whether one could spend a lifetime with a potential partner. In such cases, women often cited fears of divorce as the reason for trying cohabitation first. A senior at the University of Washington said, “I kind of don’t really see marriages work ever, so I want to make sure that everything’s all right before [we get married]. I don’t see how people can get married without living together because I know like I have a best friend and I live with her and we want to kill each other, like, every few months.”

Other women felt that, in an age of divorce, cohabitation was a preferable alternative to marriage. A student at New York University said, “You see so [many] people getting divorces… I just don’t see the necessity [of marriage].” She went on to say, “I think that I don’t have to be married to [the] person that I’m with…. You know like… Goldie Hawn [and Kurt Russell]? They’re not married.”

But let’s get back to the drinking and the hook-up sex…

Once a woman abandons femininity for feminism, then sex is all that she can use to get noticed by a man. Men are like hiring managers, and courting is like a job interview for the job of marriage and mothering. If a woman tries to get the job by having sex with the interviewer, he isn’t going to hire her since sex has nothing to do with the job. There are children involved, you know – he has to think of them when he makes the hiring decision. But women have been taught to think bad things about men (they’re rapists) and marriage (it’s slavery) by feminists – so they don’t even try to understand men, or to respect men, or prepare their character for being a wife and mother. They just don’t understand that hard work is needed to understand men and prepare for marriage.

In a previous post, I explained how feminists wanted to get women to drink like men, have sex like men, and to abolish courtship and marriage. Under the influence of feminism and Hollywood celebrities, women began to choose men to have sex with without any consideration of morality, religion, marriage, etc. They thought that sex was an easy way to trick a man into committing to them without having to treat him like a real person, or to take the demands of marriage and parenting seriously. (They have been taught to value education and careers over husbands and children, you understand). This results in a cycle of binge-drinking, one-night-stands, cheating, co-habitating, breaking-up, stalking, aborting, etc., until the woman’s ability to trust and love anyone but herself is completely destroyed. And yet these college women somehow believe this is “adventurous”, that it makes them feel “sexy”, and that the experience of being selfish and seeing the worst kind of men sinning somehow prepares them for marriage and motherhood.

Often, a young unmarried woman’s biological father was NOT selected by her mother based on his ability to make commitments and moral judgments. He was selected because he was good-looking and would not judge the mother morally, nor impose his religion on her. But those very things that young unmarried  women today seem to dislike most about men, because they fear rejection on moral and religious grounds, are exactly the things that make men good husbands and fathers. They don’t want to be judged or led spiritually, so they choose immoral, non-religious men. Then they blame the men for acting immorally and irreligiously, and pass on their man-hating and man-blaming attitudes to their daughters, who are often raised without fathers thanks to poor choices by the mother.

Every young unmarried woman who chooses a bad man, and then has a bad experience with him is pushing away marriage with both hands. The more she destroys her ability to trust, love and care for others, the less she is able to be happy and effective in a marriage. Young unmarried women often choose bad men (men who are not interested in marriage or children) because they cannot be bothered with the demands to care or nurture a husband and children. They think those tasks detract from their selfish pursuit of education and career. Naturally, these relationships with bad men fail to result in good marriages. And that is why young unmarried women are voting to raise taxes and to empower government to replace men with social programs. They want to protect themselves from their own self-inflicted wounds – at taxpayer expense.

4 thoughts on “Research to help you understand the “hook-up” culture on campus”

  1. Excellent report, WK. You should like that book, “You’re Teaching My Child What?” It was the first book I read this year and has some really good information as to why girls and boys think differently about sex, and how sex outside of marriage at any level is detrimental especially to girls. One of the best books I’ve read on the subject.

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  2. This study was done in 2001. Isn’t there one since then examining the damage to men as well? Or has science so bought into the notion that men aren’t hurt by hooking up that they don’t even bother to look into it?

    And, BTW, Wintery, I have a stepbrother who slept with 38 girls as a high school student. Not surprising, at the tender age of 49, he’s never been married. Has had lots of girlfriends, but his early adventures as a lothario pretty much convinced him that women were interchangeable. He saw them that way in his teens—and has lived his life proving that to himself over and over.

    Where’s the science examining this sorry state of affairs? Frankly, I’d be more concerned about this than college women. I mean, you’re 35 and a conservative Christian. It’s not like the girls hooking up in college are going to be in your pool of potential spouses.

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    1. MCS, for the first time I agree completely with you in this comment. I’m not expressing this so much for personal reasons as for concern about society and children in general.

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