You've probably heard that "romance is dead," and young people are responsible for killing it. Sure, our generation may approach love and relationships a lot differently than previous ones, but that doesn't necessarily mean we don't know how to be romantic. In fact, according to eHarmony's 2018 The Happiness Index, a national survey on love and relationships in America of over 2,000 people aged 18+ in long-term relationships or marriages, millennials are actually the most romantic generation among all.
It may seem surprising at first, but Emily Holmes Hahn, matchmaker and Founder of LastFirst matchmaking tells Bustle technology and social media, which are often blamed for ruining love, are actually helping millennials be more romantic.
"Our relationships are becoming so much more public than they used to be," she says. "With Instagram and other social media, your romantic gestures now live forever online, so you’d better make them grand!"
According to Hahn, that competitive drive may be one of the reasons why older millennials between 25 and 34 years-old, were found to be more likely to go out on date nights, make romantic gestures, and buy each other small gifts just because, over any other age group. But competition because of social media isn't the only reason.
"There seems to be a shift in which people are starting to put attention back into relationships and the process is becoming more important than the outcome," Labuzan-Lopez says. "I find this to be true when working with couples in this age group as opposed to other couples. Millenials are more open to these ideas from my experience, and they are often closer to the beginning of their relationships as compared to older couples." Besides, romantic gestures do seem to lessen over time, she says. Once kids enter the picture, finding time for romance can be a little more complicated.
So here's how millennials and older generations get romantic, according to eHarmony:
1Younger Millennials (18-24 Years Old)
About 90 percent of younger millennials say they hold hands when they're out for a walk, 70 percent make it a point to go on date nights, and 68 percent like making romantic gestures like writing love notes to their significant others.
2Older Millennials (25-34 Years Old)
According to the survey, 79 percent of older millennials like making romantic gestures, which is a lot more than any other generation.
3Younger Gen X (35-44 Years Old)
Younger Gen X'ers are 15 percent less likely to go on date nights than older millennials, and was the least popular way they do romance. Holding hands during walks was the most common romantic behavior among this age group.
4Older Gen X (45-54 Years Old)
Older Gen X'ers were less likely to buy their partner's small gifts outside of their birthdays. Like younger Gen X'ers, they were more likely to hold hands during walks.
5Baby Boomers (55-64 Years Old)
When it comes to showing romance, 59 percent of 55 to 64-year-olds like going on date nights, while 49 percent say they like making romantic gestures.
Over 50 percent of people in the 65 and up age group like going on date nights, 60 percent like holding hands during walks, and 40 percent like making romantic gestures. Overall, they were least likely to buy gifts for the partners unless it was a birthday.
According to the survey, 68 percent of people among all age groups say "I love you" daily and 65 percent kiss on the mouth for a second or two each day. While men are into "event-style" romantic gestures (i.e. date nights), women tend to show more signs of daily affection.
If you want to bring more romance into your relationship, Hahn says to make everyday meals an occasion to connect, and touch often in non-intimate situations like when you're watching TV or mingling with others at a party. "Make sure you're connecting physically, while avoiding (too much of) PDA, of course," she says. "Everyday touching is very much correlated with happy couples."
Millennials may do things differently than previous generations, but it seems like we know how to do romance right.