Lifestyle Writer | Caitlyn Adams | firstname.lastname@example.org
Flashback to 25 years ago: a freshman girl walks into her first house party and locks eyes with a handsome guy from across the room. He approaches her and they spend the whole night talking and laughing. The two spend more and more time getting to know each other and eventually fall in love, spend the rest of their college years together and get married.
Sound familiar? Probably not. That’s because our generation is a lot different than our parents’. In this day and age, the hookup culture is alive and thriving. It seems that relationships, at least healthy ones, are harder and harder to come by. With “YOLO” in our Tinder bios and casual sex on our minds, we aren’t exactly searching for a college sweetheart. This brings about the question: is there a negative stigma attached to being in a relationship during college? Some people seem to think so.
A study published by campusexplorer.com says that a third of college seniors have been on fewer than two dates throughout their time in college. In four years as an undergraduate student, they couldn’t get passed “Netflix and chill”? Dating seems to be dying and we might only have ourselves to blame.
“You do things a lot differently when you’re in a relationship,” a male student at Ohio University said. “When you’re single, your friends are usually trying to get you to be more social and go out.”
This peer pressure to party and have one-night stands might play a part in the negative light shed on finding a steady partner in college. These students in relationships are made to feel like they’re missing out on something if they choose not to partake in this controversial lifestyle. It’s difficult to tell your buddies that you’d rather stay in and snuggle than head to the bars and drink. To many young people, college is the perfect time to be wild and have fun. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with having a good time. Unfortunately, a lot of them are throwing away opportunities to get to know people for fear of “catching the feels.” Students are missing the bigger picture, which is the fact that meeting classmates and building relationships is a great way to learn more about yourself as well. It allows you to see what you like, what you dislike and what you want out of your future.
“My single friends treat me differently because they don’t understand the importance of a relationship,” a female student said. “They feel like I choose my significant other over them.”
With some students finding it increasingly difficult to acquire a balance between lovers and friends, it’s not surprising that our generation is shying away from the monogamous scene. Thanks to promiscuous movies and popular MTV shows that target the youth, people view college as one big, sexy party. It’s great to explore yourself sexually and have fun along the way, but that doesn’t mean that there isn’t something to be said about settling down with someone that you genuinely enjoy spending time with.
That being said, if monogamy isn’t your thing right now, more power to you. Just don’t let the “fear of missing out” force you to count relationships out since they are less common in our generation. There’s nothing wrong with deciding to settle down instead of hook up.