Every year I, like many others, dread the family holidays and their endlessly predictable stream of questions: “What’s your major? How is school going? Do you have a boyfriend?” The answer remains the same: “Public relations. It’s just school. And no.” This year, however, I came up with a response that immediately shut down any follow-up questions or the pitying response of, “The right one will come, just wait.”
My response is as follows: “If by a boyfriend you mean five classes, a job, an internship, two clubs and an amazing group of friends, then yes, yes I do.” Deciding on a major, signing lease papers, and picking out classes at an overpopulated school is hard enough. I didn’t need to add the stress of a relationship to that too, especially from someone who probably doesn’t know what they completely want out of life.
That’s why this year I decided to date college.
Deciding to date college meant taking advantage of all the wonderful things these four years have presented me with in order to truly love myself. College students have endless opportunities to meet new and exciting people, travel to different cities and learn about things you never even heard of. Searching for a long-term relationship that could take away from the college exploration is like going to an All-You-Can-Eat Buffet and only stopping at the dessert table. By tying yourself down to just one thing, you miss out on all the other amazing things it has to offer.
Besides, these are the only selfish years I get. The only years I’ll find unattached from high school curfews and protective parents but still free from the adult responsibilities of finding health insurance, paying a mortgage and changing screaming babies’ diapers. And besides, long gone are the days of being picked up and taken on a date filled with interesting conversation. Instead, we live in a generation of social media communication and one night stands who never speak again after Netflix and chill. Romantic, right?
Taking time to just enjoy the college experience has changed my life. Since I stopped talking to dead-ends and boring guys, I’ve had more than enough time to discover my passions more and ace my hardest classes. While having someone to talk to all day and feed you compliments may be ideal, living the college experience sounds so much better. I’ve been on weekend adventures with new friends and old, from family vacays to and shopping, and began working at a job I love and writing for this amazing online publication. I’ve even had time to put a serious dent in finishing Last Chance U.
I know that I will finally find the love of my life someday, just not today. Yeah, it sucks scrolling through Instagram and seeing your followers all boo’d up, but right now I have someone genuine that I enjoy being around, and that’s me. I’ll randomly treat myself to sunflowers and Starbucks because it makes me happy and that’s all that matters. Long story short, dating in college isn’t a priority of mine and that’s okay. Sometimes taking time for yourself is more important and that’s okay too.