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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Washington chapter.

In a world often obsessed with the pursuit of romantic relationships, I’ve found an underlying, freeing feeling found in being single during my freshman year of college. 

Hot take: I enjoy being single almost more than being in a relationship. Granted, I’ve had just one legitimate relationship (and more than enough situationships). So once the day comes that I’m in a happy, healthy relationship, I can almost guarantee I’ll change my mind. Similar to your relationship with friends or a significant other, being single has its pros and cons, good days and bad. My freshman year has been a testament to this truth, as I’ve discovered the art of truly thriving in my own company. Trust me, it’s not as daunting as it seems!

Let’s address the elephant in the room: the pressure to find “the one” in college. Spoiler alert: college is NOT like the movies! More than likely (not saying it’s impossible though), you won’t bump into someone, accidentally drop your coffee, and have that charming, jaw-droppingly beautiful man that knocked it out of your hand take you out for coffee to make up for it. I sincerely wish that you all have that experience, but as life goes, it may not be in our favor. 

We all have some version of the dream of meeting our husband in college (or finding our way to that guy best friend from our hometown…). If it takes you all four years, or you don’t even find a significant other at all, don’t worry too much. There’s nothing wrong with you or anything you’re doing, I promise

Unfortunately, the cliche saying “find the bridesmaids, wait for the groom” has proven to maintain its truth, time and time again, in my mind throughout the course of the past 7 months. One of my roommates has become my college best friend, and I’ve already decided she will be a bridesmaid in my wedding. I’ve nurtured multiple cherished friendships that have had an unbelievably significant impact on my life after knowing them for such a short period of time.

The freshman year rollercoaster is an intricacy that’s often left unspoken: it can evoke tumultuous feelings of homesickness, loneliness, and a sense of being adrift. I often think how comforting it would be to have a partner to help me navigate these adjustments. Many of us are experiencing these overwhelming feelings for the first time, and it’s fatiguing to understand the magnitude of your sensitivities. As an out-of-state student, having both my Seattle-based roommates gone at their homes on many weekends can occasionally sting a tad bit, adding to the seclusion I already feel in my cramped dorm room. 

I’m definitely aware of what I signed up for when I picked a college two states away, and I’m glad they both have an easier outlet to relax, because being away from home for the first time is challenging for all of us. Yet amidst these taxing feelings, I do my best to take the opportunity to become more rooted in my own presence and nurture myself before I bring someone else into my world. 

One thing college will teach ya pretty quick– you’ll be doing many things alone, but it doesn’t have to be miserable. I’ve always enjoyed doing certain activities on my own but living on your own takes it to a whole new level. You and your friends are studying different majors while class timetables rarely match up, proving tough to get together everyday. Life is busy! It’s okay to camp out at the library on your own, sit in the dining hall alone, or go solo grocery shopping. You get used to it over time, it becomes second nature, it’ll be okay.

However, life’s not all sunshine and rainbows. Of course, there are moments when doubt creeps in, when the allure of romance and a constant companion feel irresistibly attractive. To be frank, I’ve spent plenty of nights alone in my room, listening to Phoebe Bridgers’ entire discography on repeat, feeling sorry for myself, and wondering why it seems like it’s so easy for everyone else to acquire a boyfriend/girlfriend/whomever you please.

Wrestling with fears of vulnerability and attachment is par for the course, as is my nagging unanswered question of whether or not I’m ready to intertwine my life with someone else’s. Like many people, I’m afraid of the unknown and being hurt again. Many weeks it’s been a stretch to take care of myself, so how could I even care for someone else on top of that? 

It’s easy to succumb to social pressures, to believe that every weekend should be a blur of partying and hookups. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good night out, but again, college is simply not like the movies. But I’ve realized a slow truth, that it’s okay to do things according to my own timeline and embrace that uncertainty.

Finding solace in the unknown and accepting the ebb and flow of relationships is a journey of self-discovery in itself. There is no script to follow, and no timeline set in stone. Each of us are doing our best day in and day out to get through the week, so get yourself a sweet treat as a reward for finishing out your day.

So, has this been me projecting some of my loneliness and doubt into an article? Perhaps. But like with all things in life, we’re just doing our best to show up everyday and give this stage of life our best shot.

So to my fellow single ladies, please hear me when I say: there’s no shame in not having a significant other. Embrace the uncertainty. You’ve heard it 100 times, but seriously, trust the process.

The most captivating love story is the relationship we have with ourselves. 

Hi! My name is Sophia Sostrin, a first-year student at UW. I plan to double major in Journalism & Global/Regional Studies. I'm from San Luis Obispo, California and spend any free time reading at the beach or hanging out with my dog while I'm home. A fun fact about me is that I have dual citizenship with Switzerland! And, I'm a huge music junkie, love watching sports & am addicted to true crime documentaries. Creative writing is my passion and I'm so stoked to share my work!