Dating and experience with romance are relatively common – but far from universal – among teens ages 13 to 17.Some 35% of teens have some type of experience in a romantic relationship, a figure that includes current and former daters, as well as those in serious and less-serious relationships.
A history of sexual assault in females and a history of dating violence in males did not increase the rates of attempted suicide, which is the third leading cause of death for adolescents.
Economists Peter Arcidiacono and Marjorie Mc Elroy of Duke and Andrew Beauchamp of Boston College examined an enormous trove of data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, more commonly known as The poll asked a broad range of questions about health and behavior—and the data set has become the basis of dozens of famed medical, sociological, and economic studies.
(For instance, James Fowler of UC-San Diego recently used data from Add Health be a genetic foundation for an individual's political beliefs.) For their paper, Arcidiacono, Mc Elroy, and Beauchamp focused on the dating and sex lives of high schoolers—a subject much-analyzed by magazine editors and romantic-comedy screenwriters, but less familiar to social scientists.
Teens ages 15 to 17 are around twice as likely as those ages 13 to 14 to have ever had some type of romantic relationship experience (44% vs. These older teens also are significantly more likely to say they are currently in an active relationship, serious or otherwise (18% vs. Older teens also are more likely to be sexually active, as 36% of 15- to 17-year-olds with romantic relationship experience have had sex, compared with 12% of 13- to 14-year-olds with relationship experience.
Besides age, there are relatively few demographic differences when it comes to teens’ experiences with dating and romantic relationships.