Sex & Life: The Hook-up Culture

The term hook-up has an ambiguous definition because it can indicate kissing or other forms of physical sexual activities between sexual partners. The term has been widely used around the world in many generations, for many years.

Mostly called no relationship sex or sex without dating, a hook-up culture is one that accepts and encourages casual encounters, including one-night stands and other related activities, which mainly focus on physical pleasure.

According to Shannon T. Boodram, “hooking-up is nothing more than settling which often leads to instant gratification for sex, pleasure, a feeling of being loved, an emotional feeling of being adhered to” and et cetera. Other terms as slang terms for hooking up are “friends with benefits”, casual sex, booty call, “recreational sex” or defined as a relationship with “no strings attached”.

In Nigeria, the slang ‘hook-up’ is a gateway to a coded industry for sex. The art of the hook-up is a subtle way of paying for sex without the direct approach of prostitution and ‘runs’ – oh runs girls are the new urban prostitutes, on-demand and tech savvy call girls which are one step ahead of prostitutes. They are also called the ‘money for hand, back for ground ministry’. They don’t hang around in clubs and lounges frequently. They don’t live with a group of other runs girls. They don’t attend all the celebrities and entertainment industry events. In fact, looking at them, you would not know that they are in business of sexing.

Some of these ‘hook-up’ babes have not only monetised casual hook-ups, they have turned sexing into a business.

Abdul (not real name) was chatting with a cutie on WhatsApp. At some point, he decided to shoot his shot and asked her for nudes! Yes nudes. She told him to pay N5,000 flat.

Some twitter surveys have shown upwards of 50% of sexually active teens reported within this year where boy are more likely to have several hook-up partners at the same time than girls. Hook-ups are more likely to be with an ex-boyfriend, an ex-girlfriend or a friend than with an acquaintance.

About half of hook-ups among adolescents were a one time affair and this is the same for both boys and girls. Only 6% teens have had sex with someone they just met, and such encounters are a onetime affair 75% of the time. Overall, 25% of those who had sexual experience with a dating partner have also hooked up with someone they were not dating. Additionally, 40% of those who had hooked-up with someone they are not dating had also hooked up with a dating partner in the last 11 months.

Also some studies have made a connection between hook-up culture and substance use. A majority of teens, young adults and adults say that hook-ups occurred after drinking alcohol. Alcohol can act as a cue regarding sexual availability, as a dis-inhibitor, and as a rationalisation or excuse for their behavior, poor sexual performance etcetera. Studies also show that greater alcohol use is associated with more sexual activities in the course of a hook-up.

Extra effects and causes of hook-up culture

  • Some girls state that the main reason they are involved with random hook-ups is because they think that is what boys want.
  • The feeling of being wanted by a cute guy is what they want and hook-ups are how girls think they can get that attention.
  • Some actually want to find someone they truly want to have a serious connection with.

Now, adults with low self-esteem, physiological issues, depression and loneliness are more susceptible to hook-up mostly via mobile phone (dating sites). Adults can now download an application on a dating website to find another person who is looking for the same thing.