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In today’s society we often treat relationships like a badge of honor. As a woman, being in one means you finally did it!! You found a man that would actually give the effort a relationship needs.  If you have a partner, then you are considered enough by the world and if you do not, then you are in a waiting room until he comes alone. As women, we like tweets, make tik-toks, and share posts about how the single life is a curse that everyone wants to get out of right away. There is a feeling of shame when you have to tell people yet again that you are still single. 

Coming to college I thought that the dating scene at GCU would be none like I had experienced before. I had this expectation that at a Christian college boys would finally care. They would be genuinely interested in me and the person I was becoming in Christ. I thought that going on dates would be a part of my college lifestyle and it would be how I got to know people. As you can expect, the real dating scene here surprised me in the worst way possible. Boys are either in a 4 year long relationship with a girl back home or just looking for an easy moment on a dating app. This predicament leaves dating to be an impossible problem. It is no longer just going out to get to know each other over coffee. Going on a date is now a step of commitment that would not happen until you have been “talking” to someone for a certain amount of time. 

Singleness needs to no longer be treated as something to get rid of, but rather, a season of life to enjoy.

https://www.elitedaily.com/dating/everything-want-say-women-single-college/1704929

I am not writing this to hate on the male species but rather to make every college girl that has experienced this in dating feel heard. There are still great men on our campus that are looking for a quality relationship. The problem is that a lot of single men are not at a maturity level to want something more than hookup culture. If you want more than hookup culture, your options dwindle, but being single seems to be a shameful option. If you have not attracted someone by now, you are doing something wrong, right? At least that is what culture seems to say. 

Singleness needs to no longer be treated as something to get rid of, but rather, a season of life to enjoy. Living life to the fullest should never be put on hold until a relationship comes along. Maybe the opportunity for a relationship is not in your life right now because this may be your season of individual growth. This is one of the few seasons of life where you can fully decide the things you want to do and the friendships you want to invest in.

I am constantly reminded of how much being single has allowed me to grow as a human.

Dating culture in college often holds many expectations. High school me would be disappointed that I did not meet the love of my life during welcome week of college. I still have moments where I wish dating was more a part of my life, but I am constantly reminded of how much being single has allowed me to grow as a human. I have learned how to be alone and not be lonely. I have grown so deeply in my faith. I have taken the time to learn to love myself and discover what I am passionate about. I have invested in creating beautiful friendships with the people in my life. These things could have also been accomplished in a relationship, but being single forced me to face these things and overcome them. If I did not show love for my body, then who would have? If I did not learn how to be lonely, I would have lived a lonely life. Instead of treating relationships as a badge of honor, we should treat self-growth as a badge of honor whether that occurs in singleness or in dating. 

Tatum is currently a Sophomore at GCU studying Graphic Design and Advertising. As a native to Arizona she loves being a part of the Phoenix community. She is passionate about writing, design, friendship, and a really good cup of coffee.
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