Recently there has been a lot of talk about relationships and the dating game, not just in class but the BBC today had a feature on how the single life costs a lot more than if you’re in a couple (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-10892142).
Yes, we can all mope around when we’re single and be on top of the world when we’re in a relationship but there are other things in life.
There’s so much media pressure for us to be in love. In films, soaps and even television adverts or perfume promotions, we are subjected to a world of love and romance. But how much is this really the case?
What annoys me the most is when girls spend all of their time with their boyfriends and ditch their friends. And perhaps this is without meaning to but it shouldn’t be reality.
Boys over Friends
In my first year of university my housemate was really good friends with this one girl. They were completely different and looking back on it now my I’m pretty sure my housemate wonders how and why exactly they had been so close within the first few weeks of fresher’s. But soon, maybe a month or so in, the girl started going out with a boy in her corridor.
To say they were a disgusting couple is pretty much an understatement. They used to sit in bed all day, he stunk of BO and to be honest she just looked dirty. And their public displays of affection were utterly sickening. I mean come on people, get room!!! I won’t go into it because I don’t want to sicken you but let me tell you it was not nice (think Amsterdam sex show). If you found yourself sitting in between them it was high time you knew you should get yourself out as soon as possible, because someone in between them did not stop them eating each other’s faces!
As time went on they were literally joined at the hip. She started bunking off lectures: I’m not sure what he did, probably avoided showering! It’s all pretty vague in my mind now but towards the end of term she didn’t even come out with us anymore.
One night she did come out with us and just sat there moping about him not being there, even though they had had an argument before. We thought it would be a good way for us to all reconnect and take her mind off things. She left early to go home and see him…
The thing was, because she had ditched her friends so abruptly it became difficult for us to be there when things got rough. I distanced myself because, in all fairness, I hadn’t known her for very long, and although she was a lot of fun in the beginning, I felt like I didn’t really care what was going on in her relationship because she didn’t make time for us.
Long story short, they both dropped out of university and she became pregnant. I think they are still together. Although, she definitely deleted me on Facebook so I can’t be entirely sure.
And good for them if they are together but it made me realise that what she had gone through at university over that first year in terms of friendships can’t have been worth it. She had wasted all of those new friendships in favour of being with one person.
People always say friends over boys. (It brings a particular One Tree Hill story line to mind, Brooke creates the clothes line ‘Clothes Over Bro’s’ as she puts all of her energy into fashion designing after she has had her heart broke. And she becomes a massive success! Maybe a tip for all you lonely hearts out there?)
It is so important to keep time for your friends and surround yourself with as many friends as possible, and people who care for you. No matter how much you think that your boy friend is “the one” and can provide you with everything, you need to have time with other people. I don’t think it’s healthy to concentrate all of your energy on one person.
And it doesn’t just have to be sacrificing a little bit of loving for girl time. It can be guy friends as well. Just so long as you know that there is someone there when things go wrong.
And I’m not saying things always go wrong. But when you’re in a relationship things usually start straight away. More often than not they aren’t long term friends before, the relationship starts off in a romantic way. There’s obviously going to be some sort of “more than friends” attraction for something to progress from the first meeting. Meaning that when you do break up, you’re left with very little if you have pushed your friends away.
But when things do go wrong, and you have spent the past year with that one person, perhaps not lost touch of your friends but are definitely less close, where do you go? Who do you turn to? Because chances are if you have rejected your friends to such a level that you need to rebuild your friendship, how easy will it be to turn to them?
Other things in life
Either way, your friends will always be there for you. It’s just a warning not to become too engrossed in one person.
Being in a relationship is not everything. And I think people need to realise that. You can have as much love (well maybe not as much love, if you get what I mean), from your friends as you can from a boyfriend.
Some say they feel lost without a boyfriend/girlfriend. But how rude is that being to your friends. And I know your friends know what you mean, but a little more subtlety wouldn’t go a miss. There are plenty of other singletons out there who feel the same but, although it’s such a cliché, things always come along when you least expect it.
So girls, don’t go looking for love. If it comes along fantastic. But if it doesn’t, who cares. Don’t get yourself down by watching soppy romantic films where the guy always gets the girl. That’s not the way things happen. And surely we should realise this because within five minutes of seeing the couple arguing at the start of the movie, we know they are going to end up in love. (And so quickly as well I might add. Seriously, how do people in films and soaps fall in love within about a week?!)
I’ve never been in love. So this is a completely open view. And maybe I’ll be criticised for commenting on something I don’t know about. But when you’re feeling down don’t feel like you’re lost because you’re not in a relationship. And when you’re in a relationship don’t reject your friends. They will be there when you need them the most but it’s not fair on them for you to expect them to be there if you reject them for however long. And when a relationship ends, pick yourself up. Stop mopping around. It obviously wasn’t meant to be and why sit there thinking about what could have been or contemplating some vindictive way of getting them back.
We spend far too much time regretting the past or thinking about things that have happened. And before you know it, life just passes you by and you realise you’ve done nothing but mope around or follow contentious plans.
My main point is this: if you have good enough friends you shouldn’t need to feel like you’re missing out on a relationship. I know it’s nice to have someone there but in the mean time, build on your friendships. Make them solid so that you can be sure they will always be there for you; and you for them. And if you are lucky enough to find “the one”, fantastic. But don’t waste your time on searching or regretting past losses. There are bigger things in life. More important things that will happen. And when something truly bad happens, everything will be put into perspective. You don’t need a relationship. You want one. There’s a difference. So make the most of your time single; surround yourself with fantastic friends; live in the moment; and never look back in anger.