Why you should hold off on a college relationship


Couple stock photo

Cambrie Sevaaetasi

We are told our entire lives that our college years are our “Golden Years” and we should be having the time of our lives, which makes us think that we should be conquering our dreams while young and in love. But college is an environment built to help an individual find their lifelong career and receive the education necessary to pursue it. In a sense, a part of our identity is our career, the job we will most likely spend a lifetime doing.

So while we are still figuring out a major part of our identities, is it really a good time to be trying to get to know someone else and juggle our time between the two when both are full-time jobs?

For many of us, life doesn’t begin until we are 18. By law we are an adult, yet we are still a teen. We are old enough to move out, yet too young to buy a beer. During this time, many of us are sent off to college to pursue our future.

It takes time to settle into a new swing of things. College is less structured than high school and comes with much more freedom. The campus police don’t get called if you don’t show up to class all semester long, and no phone call home is made when you skip a class. There are more people and less cliques. The game is no longer, “Where do I fit in?” but more so, “Who am I?”

College is a time where the biophysics student recognizes his passion for theater arts and the law student stumbles across her passion for biology in a science class taken to fulfill a general education requirement.

This place, this institution, this trail of classes, will lead you to new ideas and new ways of thinking that your high school classes could never show you. Your original way of thinking is challenged. The adults here are not here to tell you who to be, but to show you who you could become. You are on your way to finding yourself through self-exploration.

Should you really be trying to figure out someone else?

Some couples meet in college and go on to become married couples, and some do not. Many paths cross during college, and many are just for that fleeting moment. College relationships usually prove to be more than one can handle.

In one moment, the two lovers are in perfect sync. They are in the same place at the same time, and they both want the same things out of life. In the next moment, one student has gotten a job at a law firm in New Hampshire, and the other student gets offered a dental assistant position in Southern California. Or the one student receives their dream graphic design position in Boston, and their non-student counterpart is left to work in their hometown.

The end results of a relationship are not the only unpredictable factors during this period of time either.

The goal of college is to graduate in four years. To graduate in four years, you need eight semesters of 15 or more units. The rule of thumb has been two hours of study time for every hour spent in class. So, only 12 units will give you around 10 hours of class time, meaning 20 hours of study time per week. This 30 hours also doesn’t account for other things that take time, such as grocery shopping, travel time to and from classes, clubs, sports, or invaluable sleep. How are you going to fit in work, let alone a committed relationship?

This time should be dedicated to you and your future. How do you know who is best for you when you have yet to discover yourself fully, and decide where your identity will take you?

“Well, I’d go to grad school, but I don’t want to leave my boyfriend!” and “ I’d take that job offer, but I’m just waiting to see if my girlfriend will be able to get a job in the same city…” are conversations that happen all over campus whenever it is closing in on graduation.

Life is happening and your best days are yet to come. When you land where you are supposed to be, the people meant for you will be there. We only have so long to get to where we are going, so don’t miss your window of opportunity because you are tethered to someone else.