When it comes to romantic relationships, research has shown that those who engage in more frequent sexual activity with a partner tend to have more positive views on romance. This is because sex within a committed relationship can lead to a more satisfying love life, as well as increased self-confidence and exploration of one's sexuality. However, there are many ideas as to why young adults are involved in the culture of sexual relationships, such as feeling the need to fit in. Studies have also shown that women tend to regret having sex more than men, although some sexual subcultures with open relationships allow casual sex without considering it a betrayal.
Today's emerging adults are often forced into public relationships while wanting both immediate sexual gratification and more stable romantic ties. Men should be encouraged to treat their partners with respect and generosity, and it is important to be aware of the risks associated with sexual intercourse, such as low condom use and high comorbidity with substance use. Spending time together can help couples evaluate their interest in progressing towards friendship, dating, or a relationship. Ultimately, participating in a long-term relationship within a hookup context can offer many benefits, such as increased self-confidence and exploration of one's sexuality.