The nature of dating is changing. While people may have “gone steady” in the 1950’s, young Americans now a days are certainly not doing the same thing. Half of respondents in the 2018 General Social Survey did not have a steady partner, which is up from 34 percent in 2000.
According to findings from the General Social Survey conducted by NORC at the University of Chicago, there are more adults between the ages of 18 and 34 without a steady partner when compared to three decades ago. In 1986, the first year the question was asked, around a third of respondents did not have a steady partner. By the early 2000’s that number fluctuated hitting a low in 2004. From 2006 onwards, the rate of 18 to 34-year old without a steady partner began to climb hitting its highest point last year.
These findings are consistent with other reports on the changing nature of dating. U.S. adults are getting married later, having kids later, and dating longer before marrying, if they even decide to get married or have kids at all. Despite the trend towards not having a steady partner, a YouGov poll found that half of U.S. adults who use a dating app or website are looking for an exclusive romantic partner.
This chart shows the percent of 18 to 34 year old with no steady partner in the U.S.
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