By Melanie Haid
College seems to be about lots of kinds of freedom, but when you want to increase your chances of actual happiness – rather than “filling the void” – give dating a chance. We’ve all been there, and if not, you’re trying it now: talking to people without being serious, getting the attention of a relationship (only to an extent) without any commitment. Hookups are a great time, right?
Hookup culture gives us the attention that we crave and think we need as young adults, especially when college-aged, and that’s okay when you go about it in healthy ways – it’s just that most people don’t. I’ve never heard of a hookup story where there were absolutely no feelings or ulterior motives involved, and let me tell you, I’m not for it.
Even if you don’t want an actual relationship, one of the worst feelings is not being on the same page with someone, especially if you’re intimate with someone to any degree. And trust me, no matter what page you think you’re on, it’s never the same one. Not putting a label on something a lot of times blurs the line – which means someone is going to get hurt.
You can hook up with people all you want, fine, I can’t stop you, but let me tell you, after experiencing both, relationships are so much more fulfilling in every way. Instead of constantly asking your friends and wondering “do you think they like me?” or “I hope they know I’m not actually into them like that,” you’re dedicating yourself to someone who actually cares about you in a genuine way. Let’s just say booty calls aren’t normally very emotionally supportive of one another.
The worst thing about hookups is probably that you don’t know who they are or where they’ve been, which I guess some people are into but I don’t find it appealing.
Call me old-fashioned but there’s something nice about knowing their favorite color or their dog’s name (all the important facts) before you move things to a different level. Maybe you’re into the mystery, but count me out.
Obviously, relationships can have their complications and messy endings just as much as hookups can, but if you go about it the right way, you’re maturing and growing with someone who’s helping you be a better person.
Relationships aren’t for everyone and it’s certainly not easy to find a good one, but it’s worth the wait. Sometimes good things take time, and you have to fail a few times (often miserably) before you can finally win.
Maybe everyone needs a few hookups here and there to show them what they don’t want; at least, that’s how it worked for me. Patience is important, and filling your time with people you don’t care much about in hopes to find one that matters to you doesn’t seem like the best strategy to me.
Frankly, in comparison, relationships where you trust someone and can talk about important things like boundaries and respecting one another is really important – and let’s just say one-night-stands are a little less willing to sit down and chat with you.
Just ask yourself, would you rather be woken up by a drunk 3 a.m. phone call with someone just trying to get with you, or someone telling you how much they love you? Because let me tell you, I get the latter, and I really prefer being respected and cared for rather than taken for granted.
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