College Dating: Why People Don't Want To Commit

To many, college is viewed as an opportunity to meet new people and explore oneself; however, most students tend to exclude a committed relationship from the long list of varying life experiences. When I was a freshman in college, I too was not looking to commit to someone else, but at the same time, I also wanted to know why others did not want that level of love even if it was offered to them. I went ahead and took to social media to ask the open-ended question of why college students do not want to commit and what I found stems much deeper than I thought. It goes far past the hookup culture lifestyle our society has seemed to become accustomed to. 

 "Becoming too dependent on your significant other can cause laziness." - University of Iowa Student, Class of 2021 

A University of Iowa Junior believes that it is spending too much time with your significant other, as well as underlying trust issues, is one of the main causes for college students to not want to commit to someone else. His stance on dependance is that it can cause laziness and cause you to spend too much time with one another and therefore not get important schoolwork and studying done, which is a major problem when considering the busy life of a college student. Stemming off from that point, we as college students are SO BUSY. This can lead to not seeing your significant other enough and lead to problems such as communication gaps. Prioritizing and time management is a huge part of a college student's lifestyle and adding another person's needs and emotions into that mix of responsibilities doesn't always end well. 


"Hookup Culture causes trust issues." - University of Iowa Student, Class of 2021/University of Illinois Student, Class of 2022/Anonymous  

Our society has moved from traditional dating to hookup culture. Because of this, individuals are commonly found not wanting to be tied down. They want to have the freedom to do as they please, especially freshman year when they have moved to a new place with a larger pool of people to get to know. People like to keep their options open so they are not missing out on the best opportunity that may present itself to them. Because of this type of culture and casual dating, trust issues tend to arise when people don't know where they stand romantically with one another (due to lack of communication) or if they are just a fling/ hookup. This can be super damaging, especially to those who do not particularly like hookup culture and aren't dating just to inevitably break up. 

"Letting someone else in could lead to rejection and a change in lifestyle." - University of Illinois, Class of 2022 

Friends and social life are a major part of a college student's lifestyle. Letting someone else in, from outside of your circle of friends, can be very daunting. This is mostly because of social pressure. If the majority of your friend group is single, it is almost guaranteed that you will feel nervous about pulling away from the lifestyle that everyone you spend your time with is living. This leads to the fear of being rejected by your social circle because of the significant life change that was made. 


"People are finding themselves and don't want to be focused on giving themselves to someone else." - Loyola University of Chicago, Class of 2022 

College is where you learn the most about yourself and while on that journey, balancing someone else's emotions along with your changing ones can be difficult. When you don't know who you are yet,  what you want in life or a partner, and aren't fully happy and content with yourself, it's near impossible to devote energy to someone else. In order to love others, you have to love yourself. If while on that journey all of your excess energy goes into someone else, as well as your friends and schoolwork, you will be left exhausted with nothing left to give yourself, the person who matters and needs it most.



In my opinion, college in and of itself is an extremely stressful atmosphere and people tend to look to their social interactions as a way to get away from those stressors. For some, a relationship may not be considered a stressor, but not every relationship is always perfect or even good and may cause more problems in an individual's life than needed and stray them away from their studies and friends, which are things most college students prioritize above all else. At the end of the day though, choosing to develop a romantic relationship with someone is your choice and if you are ready for that level of commitment then go for it!

Although there are many college students that do not desire that kind of connection, not everyone is the same and there are definitely still people who do. Communication is key and being honest about what you are looking for from the start is the best way to go about any relationship interest/potential. College is time for YOU and YOUR growth and taking control of YOUR life and if a relationship is part of that journey for you then you are living to the fullest.  

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