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PSA: You Are Not Entitled to See if the Grass is Greener

Like a great majority of the nation, my summer was spent engrossed in the latest series of Love Island. A bitter disappointment? Yes. A waste of my time? Yes. Did it still highlight some things that make me want to rip my hair out? Also, yes. 

There was a common theme throughout a lot of the show – and several previous series – of contestants truly believing they were entitled to see if the grass was greener; you’re not. Now I’m not an idiot, I understand in normal dating circumstances, most people would keep their options open until the relationship progressed to a stage of exclusivity. However, the way the islanders tend to go about this is the most bizarre, confusing, and to be honest, toxic thing I have seen.  

Casa Amor is always the biggest example of this. This year, whilst the boys went away to Casa Amor, the girls were left behind in the main villa. On the first night, only Jake and Teddy slept outside while the rest shared beds with the new girls. In the main villa, not one of the girls slept inside, even single girl Chloe. If you’re reading this, I assume you know the particulars of what went on within each couple, but the ones that stood out to me specifically were Liam and Jake. Jake at the time was in a relationship with Liberty, but still felt it was appropriate to egg on the other boys to kiss the new girls outside of challenges in the name of a test. Personally, if that was my boyfriend, I would be disgusted and it, in my opinion, speaks volumes to Jake’s character. Liam was a worse case as he kissed Lillie 3 times outside of challenges and hid his actions behind the guise of ‘testing the relationship’.  

Now, I won’t get into a rant about why the behaviours of so many Love Island contestants was horrid in these circumstances, but I think it speaks to the attitude and behaviours of people our age outside of the show. If you have begun dating someone, like them, but don’t feel you are ready to be in a relationship with them yet, that is absolutely fine. On top of that, if you want to date multiple people at the same time, go ahead, it’s your dating life, so live it! What isn’t okay however, is to 1) not be honest about your actions and thoughts and 2) to hide it behind ‘testing your relationship’. Communication is key in every relationship and if you are dating, you need to grow up and get good at being honest with yourself and others about your feelings. You also shouldn’t need to kiss or sleep with another person to know what you have in front of you is good.  

As a generation, we need to get out of this toxic mindset of ‘but what if there’s something better?’. There might be and you can cross that bridge when you get to it, but you can’t go around kissing/sleeping with/dating other people to ‘test’ if what you have is good enough, and not be honest with yourself or others about it. If you think the grass might be greener elsewhere, you likely aren’t in a relationship you value, so just leave! Don’t lead people on, be honest and leave if you don’t think it’s right. 

Masters student at the University of Aberdeen!
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