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.
734
views

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

Popular Right Now

Why Girls Love The Dad Bod

72928
views

In case you haven't noticed lately, girls are all about that dad bod. Girls have been dealing with body image issues since the beginning of time until recent (for those of you who consider yourselves to be "Thick thin") I hadn't heard about this body type until my roommate mentioned it. She used to be crazy over guys she claimed had the dad bod. After observing the guys she found attractive, I came to understand this body type well and was able to identify it. The dad bod is a nice balance between a beer gut and working out. The dad bod says, "I go to the gym occasionally, but I also drink heavily on the weekends and enjoy eating eight slices of pizza at a time." It's not an overweight guy, but it isn't one with washboard abs, either.

The dad bod is a new trend and fraternity boys everywhere seem to be rejoicing. Turns out skipping the gym for a few brews last Thursday after class turned out to be in their favor. While we all love a sculpted guy, there is just something about the dad bod that makes boys seem more human, natural, and attractive. Here are a few reasons that girls are crazy about the dad bod.

It doesn't intimidate us.
Few things are worse than taking a picture in a bathing suit, one being taking a picture in a bathing suit with a guy who is crazy fit. We don't want a guy that makes us feel insecure about our body. We are insecure enough as it is. We don't need a perfectly sculpted guy standing next to us to make us feel worse.

SEE ALSO: Slim Thick Is The New Thin

We like being the pretty one.

We love people saying "they look cute together." But we still like being the center of attention. We want to look skinny and the bigger the guy, the smaller we feel and the better we look next to you in a picture.

Better cuddling.
No one wants to cuddle with a rock. Or Edward Cullen. The end.

Good eats.
The dad bod says he doesn't meal prep every Sunday night so if you want to go to Taco Tuesday or $4 pitcher Wednesday, he'd be totally down. He's not scared of a cheat meal because he eats just about anything and everything.

You know what you're getting.
Girls tend to picture their future together with their guys early on. Therefore, if he already has the dad bod going on, we can get used to it before we date him, marry him, have three kids. We know what we are getting into when he's got the same exact body type at the age of 22 that he's going to have at 45.


So there you go. A simple break down of why girls everywhere are going nuts over this body type on males. We like it. We love it. We want some more of it. So here's to you dad bods, keep it up. Men, confidently strut that gut on the beach because while you stare at us in our bikinis we will be staring just as hard.

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

Falling In Love Is Easy But Staying In Love Is Harder

You never see it coming and then unexpectedly, it all catches up, and you eventually realize that there is no turning back.
137
views

Over the years that I have dated, I have fallen in love twice and stayed in love once.

The first time it happened, I was naive, emotional, and idealistic. However, in the end, I was left extraordinarily broken and unaware. For the most part, I spent a lot of time thinking about why things did not work out how we intended. It was easy until it was not.

The second time I fell in love was quite the opposite experience I went through the first time I fell in love. I was very cautious, skeptical, and built an emotional fortress for protection. Eventually, it all came crumbling down, brick by brick, until I was back to a familiar place. All that mattered was that he and I were happy and that everything felt right.

That is what falling in love is. It is a natural high, a rush of intense emotions -- anticipation, warmth, euphoria, and fear -- that takes you by force.

You never see it coming and then unexpectedly, it all catches up, and you eventually realize that there is no turning back. When you find yourself at that sweet spot, you think to yourself, "This is where I want to be. I want to stay right here forever."

As we fall in love, our affections effortlessly motivate us.

These feelings propel us to make some of the most irrational decisions or perform unexpected romantic tasks, like staying up all night talking on the phone despite having exams or an important task you have to do the next day or doing anything to spend a day with him or her.

Emotions, especially love, passion, and happiness are our strongest motivators because we will do anything to maintain them.

However, we often fail to realize that it never lasts. What goes up must come down and sometimes, it can last for a couple of months, and sometimes it can last for a couple of years.

We are often blinded by the illusion that everything good is infinite and invincible. Once you come down and reality sinks, it gets a little tricky.

When the feelings subside, we must work twice as hard to maintain and deepen the relationships.

The emotions become less intense until they stabilize into something that is just part of your everyday life. Without the intensity, the motivation eventually fades, and that is when things start to get comfortable.

Once you are in the comfort zone, the relationship either becomes stale and unappealing, or it evolves into a two-player team depending on what you do next. If you genuinely want to stay in love, choose love -- a choice build on the foundations of communication, acceptance, and selflessness.

It means being honest with your significant other while being true to yourself and understanding that compromises are the key to all healthy relationships. It means connecting and sometimes disconnecting, but always discussing your feelings without blame, assumptions, and insults so that you will never have to go to bed sad or angry.

It means knowing that your partner will make mistakes but always speaking before reacting so that the two of you can learn and grow from the experience. It means that even when you do not feel the love at any given moment, you do not give in to the short-term emotions and will instead behave and communicate with tenderness and patience. Share your vulnerabilities and consciously decide to forgive and move on.

In the end, the effort is in the decisions you make.

Deciding on anything is not easy because it requires consciousness and careful thought, whereas emotions can master you without your consent.

Choosing love is choosing selflessness and taking a much higher road -- a task that is not easily done as we are inherently in it for ourselves.

However, if we realize that temporary is easy but forever is hard, we will consistently work for the things and people who are worth fighting for while enjoying the magic and enhancement of all the is finite.

Cover Image Credit: Elizabeth Zamudio

Related Content

Facebook Comments