At the age of 21, I am currently in my third year of university and single. I’m writing this because I have some thoughts about the dating scene at my age and in my environment, and I realize that objects in the mirror may seem closer than they appear. What I’m saying is that, I have a theory that at the age of 21(ish) – however young that may relatively be, is a pivotal time in your life that can really emphasize what happens in your romantic life for years and years to come. 21, is the age where many youths in North America are coming closer to finishing their undergrads, actually knowing what type of people they are and what they enjoy, as well as a future career path. A big year looms and you might not even know it yet. (Disclaimer, this blog is almost a ramble and will probably be very meta to my life, if you leave this post without a lesson learned, refer to past posts)
This past summer, my good buddy and roommate got to talking about our upcoming third year of undergrad. It was about relationships and how we found that many of our friends around the age of 21/third year of undergrad – ended up either A) getting into a serious relationship or B) getting out of a serious relationship. An easy explanation would be that at this part of your life, you probably understand what kind of person you are. You understand your strengths, your weaknesses, and a clue of what you ultimately want in this life. This may come from you diversifying your social group and interests and learning just how much absolute horse shit you can handle in your life. We’re lucky to be living in North America, where we have the privilege to get shit on by life and still be OK at the end of it, I know I am. Every morning I wake up and I say to myself “Alright, time to suck today’s dick”. It’s not a great way to live your life but it definitely wakes you up. I’ve already witnessed it first hand, people are getting into serious relationships (many for the first time), and many are ending their relationships. Now for me personally, you can read about my want for a girlfriend here, but I am at that stage too where I want a serious relationship. I feel as adult and as mature as I have ever been but let’s be honest here – there are other factors that I think other people may also have.
Parents. My parents think I’m gay, which is fine – but I’m not gay. They are also worried that I don’t have a future wife locked up because they want me to have their grandchildren. There is definitely pressure for sure to get married and have kids – shit I want to have kids, I want some thoughtful cubs scrambling around the house. And I’m sure familial pressure is not only affecting me. Let’s face it, at 21, you’re finishing undergrad soon and you probably will do a post grad if you want to broaden your career path, then boom you might be around 24, and if you don’t have a significant other that you feel prepared to marry in a couple years then that would be a tad worrisome. Also, once you graduate you know how hard it is to meet people? I don’t know, but I have been told that it is really hard. I have been told by actual grown up adults – yes actual grown ass adults, that this part of my life is the easy part where dating is easy but I am having more trouble than ever, so obviously if I leave school without even a prospect I can kiss those thoughtful cubs goodbye.
Another huge reason to why I think around 21 is an age where people are seriously looking for a relationship is because their friends are in serious relationships. I have many friends who are in serious relationships now, and I am envious. I’m not going to even hide it, I see a couple picture and all I see is my lonely ass self, crushing Red Bulls and playing League. Social media has made it impossible for anyone to be in a relationship without other people knowing, which is fantastic for those who love sharing. I know I make a lot of How I Met Your Mother references, so bare with me on this one but I’ve seen myself as the Ted Mosby of many relationships currently, but not Ted with kids, or Ted with Victoria, or Ted with Stella, or even Ted after being left at the alter but Ted when Robin is engaged to Barney and Marshall and Lily have Marvin. All the people who you thought you were in love with, are either not wanting to be with you or are also seeing other people and all your friends are in meaningful relationships, and…you’re not. And you’re wondering – what didn’t work before, what is it that’s missing, what are you not doing, and is it ever going to happen, and unless you meet a person who you love – who you are convinced that you are absolutely 100 percent are head over heels in love with, you will never get those answers.
The silver lining is that you can still live a very full life without having that significant other in your life. Many great people in this world have passed away without that significant other and have lived very full lives. But if you’re anything like me your future involves a counterpart who you are in love with, who you share your life with, who you want to have a family with, and want to grow old with, and at the age of 21, knowing all that – I can’t be anything but very impatient.