FBS: Timing and Other Things That Matter
College relationships can be sticky when post graduate plans don’t match up. The more cultured and highly educated we become, the less fixed we are to one place or situation.
Right out of college we have nothing but endless possibilities at our feet; so we’re less likely to make a commitment right away and risk sacrificing all the adventures we could have in the future if we remain single. Deciding how to handle post graduate romance can result in a difficult trade off, especially if we want it all – both a family and a successful, adventurous career.
In less educated populations – or groups of individuals with mediocre social, fiscal, and career opportunities – one of the most accessible pleasures life has to offer is the opportunity to find a partner and have children. When we can’t become a major player in the world at large, we become a major player in the microcosm within which we live. We can’t work on Wall Street, so we become a spouse and parent. We obtain the one thing that is available to virtually all humans, love and reproduction.
Now this isn’t to say that marriage and children are not fabulous life goals in and of themselves. It is also important to understand that I am in no way implying that people who marry and have children are ignorant, uneducated, or inferior in any way. I’d like to get married someday and, while the issue of children is up in the air for me personally, I can certainly appreciate the desire most people have to parent children.
However, I do think that some people choose to marry and have children simply because it’s something they can do – it’s feasible no matter what your educational level, socioeconomic status, or career potential.
But things are different when the-sky’s-the-limit for educational and personal achievement. When we’re given the option to go anywhere and do anything, where is the impetus to choose an option that usually ends up being mutually exclusive to personal freedom? Any decision to make a huge commitment like getting married or having children cannot be taken lightly, and will likely be one if the most difficult decisions of our lives.
It’s interesting that one of the main things that attracts us to a potential partner is a certain independence, competence, and well-defined sense of self. After all – and here I will speak of my own heterosexual proclivities – no one wants a needy, clingy guy who makes his entire life about you. I want a man who wants me, not a boy who needs me. And I feel like a lot of straight women would concur with that assertion. So we want a man that has his own life but also wants to share in ours, right?
Well unfortunately, the catch 22 comes when we actually find someone independent, confident, and just all-around awesome, and discover that he isn’t willing to sacrifice his dreams and career goals in order to better facilitate ours. Essentially, the very thing that makes us want him in the first place is the same thing that can potentially make the relationship impossible.
Don’t let the irony escape you, kids. That’s fodder for the “life isn’t fair” crowd if I’ve ever heard it. Welcome to one of the main personal issues we have to confront as college students: what – and whom – will we take with us after graduation?
Suzette Elizabeth Lake writes mainly for her personal blog FavoriteBirdSpeaks (affectionately referred to as FBS) and contributes weekly to The Incubator blog Dating in The District (DITD).
To anonymously submit a dating related question to Suzette’s advice column, Ask Suzette, please email her at SLake@theeagleonline.com. All personal information will be kept confidential.
Posted in Dating in the District