How The Fear of Commitment is Making Millennials Lonely

How The Fear of Commitment is Making Millennials Lonely

Non-relationships, non-breakups, and hook up culture are getting us nowhere.
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A few weeks ago, a close friend of mine went through a non-breakup. She wasn't in a relationship with the guy she had been seeing, but they had been "talking," if you will. It was a non-relationship that resulted in a non-breakup, but the pain and heartbreak she felt after were entirely real.

Our generation has started a culture of non-dating and stages of talking, where commitment is optional and relationships are fuzzy gray areas that are illegible, messy and confusing. We can't read into them, so we end up overanalyzing the little bit we know. Dating has turned into a hookup culture that is based on a series of games to determine who holds the control in the relationship.

The ideology has become such that whoever cares the least "wins."

We don't want to put a label on things. For a generation that is so advanced and open, commitment serves as one of our biggest fears. It's a combination of reducing the level of rejection and the liberty of having a quick escape route. No one wants to lose, no one wants to be rejected, no one wants to be stuck, no one wants to miss out on other options.

Yet no one wants to be alone.

The juxtaposition is stark. Why would anyone commit if they are already getting every benefit of being in a relationship with the additional liberty of having other options available? Why would they risk the embarrassment and awkwardness of being rejected if they can avoid it entirely? Instead, you hook up, you go out, and you assume there are no strings attached.

Unfortunately, there are always strings attached. Spending time with a person in this manner builds up your emotional ties. You may not see it as "love" but it's impossible to be immune to some feelings.

You can't avoid loving simply so you won't lose.

You can ignore feelings all you want, but refusing to identify them doesn't erase the fact that they exist. Then when one person confides in the other that they want something more and are instead rejected due to the commitment-phobia that is so pervasive in our generation, you end up with a sad, heartbroken individual who is suffering the very real effects of a non-breakup.

To get over the hurt caused by this one person, you go out to find a new distraction. We don't want to feel alone, so we settle for some half-hearted relationship for fulfillment. We distance ourselves from feeling what we do and ignoring the voice in our head that knows better. We build up more walls in the effort to not get hurt again but refuse to recognize we are hurting ourselves more in the long run. This perpetuates a cycle of hooking up, talking, and false intimacy. We close ourselves off and lose our ability to trust others a little more with each heartbreak we experience.

And in the midst of all this, we wonder why we still feel alone.

You have to let your walls down and allow yourself to be emotionally vulnerable. Hold yourself to the standards you desire and allow yourself to be alone for a while if that's what it takes. Happiness and fulfillment come from real relationships, where you are honest and open with each other about your feelings.

You might even find what you're missing out on.

Cover Image Credit: animeflipside.net

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12 Things That Happen When Your Person Is Far Away

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The concept of having "a person" was first introduced by "Grey's Anatomy," and took off faster than I'm sure the writers expected. For a lot of us, our person is far away. Here are some things that happen when this is you and your person:

1. You will have separation anxiety right off the bat.

2. You get irrationally jealous when they post a picture with someone else.

3. You literally text each other about everything, and I mean everything.

4. You know better than to call them if you have less than an hour to talk.

5. You stalk their Instagram so you still feel like a part of their life.

6. All your school friends know who they are because you're constantly telling stories about them.

7. When you come home for breaks they're usually the first person you see.

8. They're also usually the last person you see.

9. Your Snapchat streak is abnormally high.

10. You tell them you love them more than your significant other.

11. You send an average of 400 texts to each other in one day.

12. You miss having someone you don't have to explain anything to.

To my person, I love you no matter the distance! Thanks for always being there for me.


Cover Image Credit: http://guardianlv.com/2014/05/greys-anatomy-season-finale-goodbye-dr-cristina-yang-recap/

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Thank You, To The Women Who Loved My Boyfriend Before Me

I don't know who taught you to be the way you are, but I am thankful for them.

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I am so thankful for the women who loved you. Whether they were flings or long-term relationships, I am thankful for them.

I am thankful for the girl you dated in high school who broke your heart for the first time and I am thankful for the girls you fantasized about in your college classes. These women did nothing wrong. They were new to the dating world just like you and maybe you both honestly thought it would work out in the long run, but I am so happy they didn't.

The women before me loved you.

They helped you learn how to love someone. They taught you how to express feelings and the value of being held.

They helped you through brokenness I never could've and expanded your views of the world.

All the good and bad in those relationships help you and I have the relationship we have now. I'm not saying being your partner is always easy, sometimes we argue or get on each other's nerves.

However, you come at every situation with compassion and laughter. I don't know who taught you to be the way you are, but I am thankful for them.

I'm most thankful for your mom.

I haven't met her, although one day I hope to, she created you. She raised you to be the person you are today.

You are authentic, grounded, compassionate and driven. You are the most selfless person I have met and I know you got that from watching your mother be the same way.

You have this way of being vulnerable and elegant, even when we dance like robots in the kitchen. Your joy fills our home and all I know is that if I want to be with someone, its someone like that.

Thank you, to the females who were before me, you helped form the man I adore.

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