I’ve gotten an overwhelming number of question submissions so I figured I’d tackle two today!! The first regards commitment in high school and the second the use of the word love…so buckle up and get ready for one heck of a ride!
Question 1: Should teenagers be looking for “love” or just someone to go along on the ride with them?
Answer: Earlier in this blog, I addressed the question of whether or not high school relationships are ‘worth it,” which addresses a major part of this question so read there for more! However, to sum things up, I truly think it depends on your personality. There are many anti-commitment people who just want to have fun but also many people that I’d classify as “relationship people.” I’ve always been a relationship person. I love the feeling of comfort and appreciation associated with a steady and healthy relationship, hence why I’ve been in a relationship for over a year and a half. I tried the “go with the flow” thing for a while, meeting new people and seeing where it took me and it was honestly very unfulfilling….but, some people thrive on that! One of my best friends has chronic commitment-phobia and even if he’s basically dating a girl, he doesn’t like to put a label on it. And, heck! As long as the other person is happy with that arrangement and you feel like you’re fulfilled, then go for the “go along for the ride” approach. I believe that they key to solving this is by not forcing yourself to what you believe your friends, your partner, or society feels is best. If you know that you’ll be happy playing the field for a little while, you shouldn’t be ashamed (as long as you’re not being some disrespectful ghoster or something). If you won’t be happy giving your all to a relationship then don’t be in one because it’ll only hurt you and your partner in the end. Likewise, don’t follow the millennial stereotype that this is your time to hook up with anything that breathes if that’s not you. There’s nothing wrong with wanting a committed relationship either. So, what you, or other teenagers, “should be looking for” is the path that makes YOU happy and that you believe won’t lead to regret or dissatisfaction.
Question 2: Do we overuse the word “love”?
Answer: Love. What a beautiful word filled with warmth and excitement…or is it? Personally, I don’t think “love” is overused. By suggesting that it can be overused is suggesting that there is some sort of limit to the love that a person can share with others and that’s just not true. Ya sure maybe saying “I love you” in 6th grade after 3 days of dating that guy in your music class is kinda dumb. But is it harmful? No. Saying that you love people is never dumb. It shows that you care and appreciate them. However, I do think there is a difference between using “love” for friends and using “love” for your significant other. Friend love can never be overused, you should let your friends know you love them always, even if not with the word love but with actions. For relationships, go with what your heart tells you. If you don’t feel totally in love from Day 1, then you can wait as long as you need to say you love them. But, if you feel it since the day you meet then scream it from the rooftops! I really really don’t think you could say it too much. If you really do love the person, it won’t lose its significance. If you feel the word is losing significance, then you should really be evaluating how you feel not the word itself. Often times, the people who are against using the word love are really scared of love itself. This causes strain on both friendships and relationships if you feel so hesitant towards using it and can make that person feel unappreciated. Once we learn to express our love openly and without restriction, we are free to feel all of the wonders that the word holds.