Hi everyone! It’s been a week or so since I last posted. And I am glad to say that I am alive!!! No one has attempted to murder me yet, although many homeless people have made me extremely uncomfortable as I have driven to work every day (if you would like to hear more about those adventures, let me know!). Oh, and also the daily police sirens I hear outside my window at night are also not comforting.
But, alas, I have mustered enough bravery (not very much) to go out with another intern (wow! I have friends??), and I had a great time! Baltimore is pretty damn nice… if you are in the right area… with the right people…
Okay, but back to the topic of this post. My opinion on dating in the 21st century. Oh my. Sit back and grab some tea or popcorn or something to keep you entertained cause this is going to take a while.
To begin, I’d like to establish that there is no proper definition of “dating.” What is “dating?” When you are “dating” someone, is it exclusive? Or do you have to have a talk before you can date exclusively? Otherwise, you’re just dating casually… Or does dating casually mean that you’re in a relationship already?
This was (still is) REALLY bothering me, so I had to look it up. Dictionary.com defines dating as “going out socially on dates” ………… ?????????
Why the fuck do definitions of words include the word you’re trying to define in the definition (mental note: add to list of things I will never understand about the world).
Next, since I am the way I am, I looked up the definition on good ol’ urban dictionary to look for some clues as to what the hip young people these days defined dating to be. The top definition was “Of a couple, to be in the early stages of a relationship where they go out on dates to find out what each other is like, as a prelude to actually being a fully fledged couple.”
***key word: PRELUDE***
Okay, so by this definition, dating is NOT exclusive. You are free to date as many people as you want at the same time. And that is perfectly acceptable. Here’s my problem with this.
For most relationships, you either get married or break up. Or maybe you don’t get married, but you get in a relationship with someone in hopes of staying together and maybe being fuck buddies or something (opposed to being broken up with and alone).
In order to continue down this relationship path thing, some things are required. To make this easier to understand, let’s just imagine the amount of time you have in life to spend on your relationships with other people is like the dough of a pizza.
So everyone starts with this round thing of dough. Maybe some people have more time to spend on relationships so they have a large dough of pizza. Maybe people have less and they have a miniature pizza.
And every person you’re dating is a chunk of the pizza. The more people you see, the smaller their chunk of time and attention they’re receiving from you is. The fewer people you see, the bigger their chunk is.
And each topping you add on to your pizza is like putting in more love and feelings and emotions (wait do we still have those??) into that person.
If you’re seeing lots of people at the same time, they’re all getting tiny chunks outta your life. Fewer feelings, less time, less investment overall. And more likely to end in a breakup… since all you have to do is get rid of that tiny little chunk outta your pizza.
We’re even taught to make it seem like there’s something wrong with us when we don’t want to be okay with getting rid of a chunk of pizza. People are called “too attached,” “crazy,” “emotional,” and “obsessed” among other things.
Okay maybe that simile went in way over your head (my head too don’t worry), but basically what I’m saying is: we live in a culture where people promote hookups and “friends with benefits” and “no strings attached” and lots of other forms of “dating” that allow us to believe that we’re happy with our love lives when we’re really not. People don’t even know what they’re looking for in a long-term partner because they’re taught not to look for one. To just settle with whatever they have right now.
Additionally, dating apps like Tinder and Bumble make it easier than ever to have one-night stands with a random stranger. Don’t get me wrong, I believe everyone should be able to do what they want to do. And maybe you need a one-night stand to get your horniness in check or to forget about an ex (maybe that’s not the best way, but I feel ya). But, on the regular? To have one-night stands every weekend?
Your pizza is gonna be full of random shit since you aren’t really putting time into it. And you’re just gonna throw it out when you don’t like it. And start all over again. And thus, stay single (but dating happily…?) forever.
I know that this is not how everyone thinks, and many people are in happy relationships. But more often than not, in my experience as a college student, people are neither in happy nor healthy relationships because they don’t know what that looks like. And we have ourselves to blame. Oh, and also fuck bois.
I just want a beautiful pizza. And in order to get one, I need to dedicate time and effort to get the toppings just right, the amount of cheese and sauce just right, etc. I want to use all of the dough. Not just a chunk.
Til next time!