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Here is how 14-year-old Catherine started going out with the guy who is now her boyfriend.

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’ You all decide to see a movie and you’ll all get separate drives there.

You usually don’t go out one-on-one.” And there are some other interesting developments in this brave new world, including the fact that teens feel freer to put off sex, and they see love, marriage and kids as best left for the (fairly) distant future.

“That’s just in the movies,” says Brett, 14, of Aurora, Ont.

“What happens in real life is you’ll be hanging out with your immediate circle of friends, including your girlfriend, and you go, ‘What’s everybody doing Friday night?

“So from a parenting perspective,” says Connolly, who is also the director of the La Marsh Centre for Research on Violence and Conflict Resolution, “you want to know who your kids are friends with.” Kids like the security of having their friends around.

“When you’re going out with someone, it’s much easier to be yourself when your friends are there too,” says Katie, 15, of Carleton Place, Ont.

“I just spent the weekend at my grandparents’ place moving rocks.

That’s my idea of fun.” There’s certainly been an increase in boy-girl parties at younger ages, including mixed sleepovers.

” Everyone within earshot knew from Harry Potter that “snog” is Brit slang for “kiss.” While Catherine and her friends dissolved into hysterics, the boy didn’t react at all — until two weeks later, when he approached Catherine to ask her out.

And here’s how that went: Boy: “Do you wanna go out?

Group dating is also a way for kids to circumvent a parental ban on dating.

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