A guy I once knew said there’s no point in starting a relationship in college. He said that college is four short years of fun and that there’s no point in putting effort into a relationship that will never work out. Why put time and effort into someone that you won’t be with after graduation? Well in my opinion, why not? Why not try something, even if it might not work out once you graduate? If you never try, you’ll never know.
Call me old-fashioned, but I actually enjoy dating. I enjoy the adventure of going on dates. And by “date,” I mean a real date. Not a “Netflix and chill” type of date. I love the chivalry that comes with taking a girl to dinner off-campus, even if it’s just to Buffalo Wild Wings. I enjoy being able to stay in on a Saturday night with your boyfriend when you aren’t feeling the party scene. I like the simple good morning and good night texts and the joy that comes along with knowing that you’re loved.
I understand that not everyone is meant to be in a relationship. I know relationships aren’t all rainbows and butterflies. They involve sacrifice, compromise, and a lot of hard work. Not everyone is cut out to put that much effort into a relationship. And that’s fine. But what I don’t think is fine, is that the social norm is to avoid relationships at all costs.
If given the choice to hook up with a cute girl at the bar or go to dinner with their girlfriend of four months, many guys would choose to hook up with the cute girl. Society tells those guys to go for it. I say no. I understand that committing to one person is scary. You give your heart to someone and trust them not to hurt you. But trust is the beauty of a relationship.
When you date someone, you trust that they won’t hurt you. Sure, your two year relationship could come to an end because of long distance. Sure, that will hurt and you will cry. But you will get over it and be whole again. Fear is not a good enough reason to avoid a relationship. In fact, it makes you feel worse in the long run.
‘Flings’ and ‘hookups’ and ‘one night stands’ mean ultimately nothing. They don’t earn your trust, your heart, or your mind. They might give your body attention for one night; but in the end, they tear you down and make you weak. They make you feel like you’re only worth one night of fun. They make you feel alive for a few hours and then make you feel like you’re worth nothing. There’s no one to laugh with or share memories with. Only a few blurry hours of fun with someone you might never speak to again. And in my opinion, that’s the worst way to feel.
I find it so sad that people avoid relationships like it’s the plague. It’s time we start making commitments. We commit to internships and post-graduation jobs, but not to people? If you landed your dream job, would you quit it because it required effort? No. You would stick with it through the late nights and hours of work. You would commit to it because it makes you happy. That’s how we should treat our relationships.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not discouraging having fun in college. You should have fun and make memories that will last a lifetime. But when you’ve been “talking” to the same guy for months, challenge yourself and him. Challenge yourselves to make a commitment to one another. And if he can’t do that, he’s not the one anyways.