Dating is hard. When you're in college, dating is even harder because there's so much to consider before investing time into a person - but then again, it's also the easiest as it is the last stage of your life where you will have a whole community of people your age around you. A lot of people say that if you don't find someone in college, the challenge gets worse because once you graduate, your extended social circle kind of dissolves and it's only networking that allows you to broaden your sphere.
You'll definitely meet people who are not looking for a relationship, too. Which is actually understandable because at this stage in life, we are still building ourselves and some people need to be way more committed to that than to anyone else romantically. Others could use the help or someone to complement their personal growth which is observed in the several codependent relationships you see on your campus.
It's hard to figure out if the kind of relationships people have in college are healthier than the average or are actually more toxic. After observing several couples, it's easy to say that they spend an awfully unnatural amount of time together. However, one is bound to look for that level of comfort and intimacy at this point because this is the most transient period of one's life.
Despite campuses being filled with couples, hookup culture is very much alive.
There's still a great percentage of students that are involved in strictly physical relationships. This generation gets a lot of criticism from others about being extremely sexually open. We have apps like Tinder or Bumble that allow us to meet people more easily and a lot of times these people end up getting together long-term; but most times, it's just the most convenient tool when looking for sex.
I always wonder which is better, to have a relationship that takes time and effort or something casual. Everyone wants to feel what a real, healthy, romantic relationship is like, but in this fast-paced life, it's hard to navigate through something like this because it takes a lot of hours of work to perfect. This is probably why things like apps and hook up culture are so popular; there's just simply no space in our lives right now.
When people try to balance all the various responsibilities they have, an added struggle of maintaining a relationship can get in the way of other things currently more significant in their lives. This along with the openness with which people are now able to express their sexual interests makes casual relationships the ideal situation when you're at this stage in life where you're still trying to establish stability in areas like career and personality.
Some people are just not ready and/or simply want to enjoy the superficial aspects of a relationship—and that shouldn't be frowned upon as long as both parties involved are satisfied with the arrangement.
It's not the fear of commitment that our generation experiences, it's the expectations we have from romantic partners that need to be lived up to as well as the ability to reciprocate and give the other person involved what they need. The generation just before us was rampant with divorce and separations, more than any other in history, and we've all been exposed to the "don'ts" of long-term relationships quite sufficiently.
If we see healthy relationships unfold we are more likely to be inclined towards building them and we wish to do so with patience, avoiding the mistakes that we have observed. Hook up culture isn't as toxic as everyone thinks, it's just perception and clarity of what you need that determines your mindset towards relationships. In today's day and age, our sexual freedom is more important than ever and how we exercise it, as long as our ways are harmless, is our choice.