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This study reveals that the digital realm is one part of a broader universe in which teens meet, date and break up with romantic partners.
Online spaces are used infrequently for meeting romantic partners, but play a major role in how teens flirt, woo and communicate with potential and current flames. 10 through March 16, 2015; 16 online and in-person focus groups with teens were conducted in April 2014 and November 2014.
A bit less than half of teens (47%) say they feel this way about social media.
Among teen social media users with relationship experience (30% of the overall population of those ages 13 to 17): For some teens, social media is a space where they can display their relationship to others by publicly expressing their affection on the platform.
More than a third (37%) of teens with relationship experience (also called “teen daters” throughout this report) have used social media to let their partner know how much they like them in a way that was visible to other people in their network.
Fully 35% of all teen girls have had to block or unfriend someone who was flirting in a way that made them uncomfortable, double the 16% of boys who have taken this step.
Many teens in relationships view social media as a place where they can feel more connected with the daily events in their significant other’s life, share emotional connections, and let their significant other know they care.
A majority of teens with dating experience (76%) say they have only dated people they met via offline methods.