Originally published July 20, 2012
Love? Who needs it? That seems to be the consensus among university students aged 21-25. Considering that my mother was happily married at age 21, (a norm back then) this new outlook on relationships is polar opposite to the perspective of those just a few generations back.
The truth is most university students are not looking for a long term commitment. When asked, majority of students admit that although a serious relationship would be nice, it’s just not ideal in our day in age.
“There’s no point in getting your hopes up”, says Monica Purba, a student from The University of Guelph-Humber who is in a relationship. “He goes out with his boys all the time and does his thing, and I go out with my girls and do my thing…we don’t ask questions and we are happy with that”.
Adolescence views dating as more of a trial and error in order to keep their options open and to avoid the feeling of being “tied down”.
Most women admitted that although they yearn for that dream wedding they have created in their minds since childhood, they just don’t see marriage in their future.
“It’s a lot cheaper and convenient to just move in with someone,” says Sabrina Silveira, a student from The University of Guelph-Humber. “That way I don’t have to worry about divorce and if I find someone better, I can easily move on”.
The focus for young people is their careers, being independent and finding a job. Being in a relationship is seen as a distraction from becoming successful.
“When you are in a relationship you have to focus your energy on that person and do things to make that person happy, whereas if you are not committed you can focus on making yourself happy.” Says Nelly Nanan, a recent grad from Sheridan College. She also adds that you don’t have to depend on someone else for your happiness if you stay single.
This past week on my Facebook home page I came across statuses such as:
“No love for these bitches, this year it’s all business.”
“I’d rather be unhappy alone than unhappy with someone else”.
“New STD Called feelings…don’t fall for that shit”.
Young woman in our society are encouraged to be single and independent the “I don’t need a man to make me happy” attitude is seen throughout most women in university and colleges in Toronto, and it in turn sabotages the relationships they create with the opposite sex because they are afraid to open up emotionally, in fear of being broken hearted.
Hollywood movies also play a role in discouraging women from long term commitment.
“Whenever I watch a chick flick I always get my hopes up thinking that at some point at the end of the day that special someone will find a way to me” Says Jessica Stewart a Ryerson University student. Unfortunately our expectations never live up to reality.
Men also complain that they can’t find quality women in this day in age as well. Many men feel as though women are to “lose” and that they are treated the way they act.
“If she goes clubbing and partying acting like a slut, I’ma treat her like one too,” says David Seenath, a Ryerson University Student.
What happened to the days when our parents found love? Was it because it was hard for them to let their eyes wander without the internet and texting?
“There was no way your father could have cheated on me, even if he wanted to,” said my mother. “We had one phone..I would have heard who he was talking to in the other room. It’s not like nowadays where everyone is texting and can easily lie about who they are secretly messaging.
It seems as though with the rise of technology comes the rise of divorce rates.
Also technology brings about the issue of trust. How can someone trust that you love them if people only say in through a text message and not to their face? How do they know you haven’t said the same thing to other men or women, just two seconds ago?
Sometimes people question if love is even worth it? Is it worth switching universities to be closer to that person? Or changing career paths? How do you even know it will last?
With a mentality such as this people fall into lust and brace themselves from truly falling in love.
And it seems like with Facebook and instant messaging, these meaningless relationships are all too easy to come by. There is a mutual understanding that when someone contacts you to “chill” via social media, there are no strings attached, that it’s all just for fun and games.
With our busy schedules arises the problem of trying to find time to meet someone…which brings us to online dating. More and more people are turning to online dating hoping to find a perfect match, rather than meeting someone the old fashion way.
To be honest I have tried online dating and it’s awkward because both parties are being REALLY polite and nice to each other. It’s not real. There are too much formalities meeting a stranger, you are never truly yourself. I know a lot of people claim to have found love online, but there are more people that found one night stands then love.
Now that doesn’t mean there are couples out there who are truly in love or are looking for the real thing. However most people interviewed claimed that they will only commit or settle down permanently after they have an established career, (towards their 30’s) while only a handful admit that they are looking for it now despite the changes in society’s view on relationships
The truth is a lot of young people find love in high school or even in university and hold on to it because it feels that amazing, but the majority claim that they are just looking for a companion in the bed and whatever happens, happens.