I'm a confident person. I don't have many insecurities and I'm not made uncomfortable easily. In fact, I can count on one hand the amount of times I recall feeling embarrassed. There are very few conversations from which I will shy away and I don't mind sharing my own story upon request. Basically, I'm an open book.
However, there is one page I tend to leave unturned: I don't like to talk about romance.
No, it's not because I find it disgusting or because I'm single or because I support the "Netflix and chill" movement.
I simply do not like to talk about it.
Before I weeded out my social media accounts, nearly every other post on any given platform was something about a "happy" couple: selfies of kissing, pictures of flowers, teddy bears, lingerie, or candy given as gifts, multiple emojis, and hashtags about "relationship goals," or status updates about how "spoiled" someone feels because his/her significant other made a tremendous sacrifice this morning and prepared an extra cup of coffee.
Why are we talking about this?
I understand sharing milestones like engagements, weddings, vacations or other trips/events. Don't get me wrong-- I love seeing pictures of my friends and family building a beautiful life with their partners and families. That's the main purpose of social media and not at all what I'm talking about.
I'm referring to couples that leave no mystery. Romance is something intimate and private. It's not something to boast about on a regular basis. If your first thought after your significant other does something nice for you is to post it on social media, you're doing it wrong.
True "love" is not given to receive recognition.
I cannot stress that enough. When the day comes that I am comfortable enough to settle down with someone, his picture will not be posted every week as my "Man Crush Monday" and if he wants to plaster my face all over his page as his "Woman Crush Wednesday," he's got to go.
I will not announce him to all of Facebook as "my King" and Lord help him if he refers to me in any way, shape or form as "his Queen". (You know, the couple on your news feed that turns any conversation into a profession of their "love" and makes you gag with their constant public obsession over each other. I mean, come on-- what is this, a relationship or a British monarchy?).
When two people romantically love each other, it shows plenty on its own. It radiates and sets an example for others. People should not feel like they have to prove to the rest of the world that their partners are satisfactory. If you make me happy and I make you happy, why does the rest of the world need to know our personal information?
My friends often shake their heads and make fun of me when something "cute" happens because while everyone around me is gawking in admiration, I tend to resemble this photo of Chrissy Teigen:
It's become a habit.
If the conversation produces the responses, "awe" or "how cute" and it's not about animals, count me out. I'll sit there quietly, twiddling my thumbs and trying not to raise my eyebrows. It's nothing against the people who want to discuss it; the subject itself just makes me cringe.
Even in the privacy of my own relationships, stereotypical romance has me feeling awkward. I don't want a man to follow a frilly road map of what he thinks women want to try and please me. Don't even get me started on the unnecessary pressures of Valentine's Day.
I'm not a big fan of flowers for two reasons:
1. As I said before, romance is something personal and intimate. It's a nice gesture and I certainly would be thankful if they were presented to me, but thinking outside the box is much more unique.
2. I am terrible at keeping plants alive-- seriously, it's bad.
I do appreciate gestures of affection, but there are so many ways to say "I love you" without the gimmicks or informing the Facebook world every hour. When I'm not focused on my grades, future career or extracurriculars, the last thing I look for is something else to worry about.
I'm not against college dating by any means. I simply have no interest in stressing over the bullshit that comes with millennial relationships.
That may change when I meet someone who thinks a similar way about his future as I do, but for now, romance is not something on my priority list.
So, if you swoon over Pinterest boards of fairy tale weddings with fancy dresses and a perfectly crafted Prince Charming, all the power to you!
I'll be here, swooning over the giant cake and open bar.