Butterflies, romance, proposal, marriage, children: These are words that many people associate with dating. This type of courtship, common in North America and in other cultures around the world, allows those involved to assess the suitability of another as a partner in the long term. Although the practices within dating differ from country to country, the end goal is usually the same throughout the world -- marriage. However, dating itself, while with a positive end goal, also has its pros and cons.
Though traditional matchmakers practiced setting up individuals together as their lifelong trade, in the modern era, matchmakers are much more likely to be friends or family. The pro of this is that they know you much more intimately than the historical matchmaker did. However, the negative of this is that they might become invested in your own dating practices before you do, and they can feel their own form of rejection if their setup doesn't work.
Agendas in dating align on occasion with both parties wanting either just a physical relationship or one that is more long-term. This is a pro for those who want the same thing. However, when agendas do not align in dating, it can spell out disaster for one or both parties. If one party only wants a sexual relationship while another wants a long-term marriageable relationship, one or both parties may become emotionally injured through dating.
With the age of individual dating becoming younger and the freedom enjoyed by those in the dating field much greater than ever before, sexual activity is on the rise. While the positive aspect of this independence is that individuals can explore their own sexuality without actual intercourse, and they figure out what suits them as an individual rather than what the person's family or friends, for example, have prescribed. However, the negative of this is that the incidence of teen pregnancy is on the rise as is the risk of getting a sexually transmitted disease, not to mention the emotional damage that can come from sexual activity too early in a relationship or life.
Online dating's popularity has grown exponentially since the 2000s. While the pro of this is that a variety of people can meet and determine suitability that never would have been able to before. The platform for dating provided allows for many more options than ever before. However, the con of this is that online dating can lead to antisocial behavior, as determining who to date can take up much time and energy. The risks also are greater since knowledge about the individual is slimmer than when meeting the person through social groups.