Why being single in college is actually pretty awesome

I am a third-year college student in a town that I’ve lived in for the majority of my life, and I have no intention of sticking around after graduation. Because of my age and grade level, many people seem to think that being in a relationship is a must for me. Like I should be coming up with a romantic plan right now or else I run the risk of living as an eternal spinster.

If you’re anything like me, and you’ve been told time and time again that you should be trying to find someone to settle down with and marry while you’re in college, keep reading. The years you spend in college are supposedly the best years of your life, and therefore, the perfect time to find a mate. But I disagree, and here are five reasons why:

1. You’re a college student. You’re allowed to be selfish.

Being in a relationship takes time and effort. If you’re not ready to commit, you’re wasting everyone’s time, especially yours. College is a time to make friends, go out, and get to class on time. Whether you have a full-time job or not, your time in college is ultimately about you, and your transition into the “real world.” Being in a relationship means less time spent on yourself, and more time dealing with another human being, who’s just as confused about life as you are. When you’re single, you have more freedom to travel, watch whatever you want, and do other things that being tied down would prevent you from being able to do.

2. Graduation = Job Offers = Moving On

In college, most people have no idea where they’re going after graduation. To tell someone who they should be looking for “Mr./Ms. Right” is basically saying that what you want for yourself isn’t as important as falling in love (unless falling in love is your ultimate goal, then more power to you!). In every stage of your college career, you’re going to be bogged down with your own personal stress. If you find someone, that’s wonderful. But don’t force it. The odds of you sticking around after college are slim, and moving away is hard enough without adding a broken heart to the mix.

3. Dating costs money!

Some college students have cash to spare, but for the majority, this is not the case. Many students work long hours in the hopes of leaving school with as little debt as possible. Many rent their own apartments, buy their own food, and pay their own tuition. I know people who are lucky enough to have their parents helping them, but overall, money is tight. Any extra cash that comes your way is typically spent on yourself. When you’re dating, more often than not, extra cash is spent on your significant other. I have a friend who spends at least $200 on her boyfriend every time a special occasion arises. I’m not sure how she does it, but it is her money, so she can do what she wants. For me (and anyone else not currently in a relationship), however, I’d like to direct you back to point number one.

4. ALL the feels

College is an emotional time for everyone. Some people like having a significant other to lean on through difficult times, and I can understand that. But there’s a difference between seeking emotional support from a partner and from a friend. I’ll be blunt with you: pretty much every college guy you encounter will not be emotionally available enough to offer the same support that a bestie would. Your friends are going to be there for you through thick and thin. They’ll be the ones who support you during your time of month, or when the person you’re dating breaks your heart. Keep your friends close, ladies. You’ll thank me later.

5. Most of us aren’t even sure who we are yet

No one knows who they are in college. Your early 20s are stressful, and scary. Losing friends and then gaining new ones is a consistent process, and sometimes we find ourselves alone. It’s a time of moving forward and getting over loss. We read books to escape from our realities, and in a vain attempt to find solace. Being in a relationship can seriously mess up our fragile egos and make us even more confused about who we are. It takes up a lot of time and energy–two things most young people can’t spare.

You begin to question everything, and you might end up settling for less than what you deserve. If you’re single, don’t worry about it. You’re in the process of growing, and becoming who you’re supposed to be. Once you find yourself, you’ll have a better idea of who you’re looking to end up with. You’ll find someone special; someone who will make you feel glad that you waited.

Kelsey Wynne is an East Coast native, and a West Coast dreamer. She enjoys traveling, coffee, sunshine, and all things shiny. You can follow her on Twitter at @Kelsey_Wynne_.

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