Dating and Relationships in College

So, maybe you aren't one of the lucky people who found a high school sweetheart. You are probably starting your college career SINGLE AND READY TO MINGLE. What are dating norms in college? Are relationships dynamics the same as those you encountered in high school? What if you DID find a high school sweetheart? How do you find time to do all your work and keep the fire alive in your relationship? These are all questions that can be important while you pursue your academic goals. Dating norms and relationship rules often depend on the school you attend, city you live in, and time constraints of your degree program. If you are a pre-med student, you may have less time to spend with your potential boyfriend or girlfriend. The requirements of the major are usually time-consuming. Also, the dating culture of your school may not really encourage long-term relationships. However, there are exceptions to every rule—long-term relationships can be found amidst one-night stands. Here are some general tips to follow regarding dating and relationships while in college.

Set Boundaries

College is a time for intellectual exploration. Most students are given the freedom to explore their areas of interest at their own pace and in their own living spaces. Most university students live on their own or with friends or peers of the same age group. This can be really fun and of course, a great learning experience. When you meet new people you are interested in dating, you are usually given the freedom to spend as much time with them as you want. However, because you are in a new environment, it is important to set boundaries quickly. How much time will you spend time with this significant other? Where will you meet with them? You should also set physical boundaries early on in the relationship. First of all, do you want to be exclusive from the start? What are your boundaries for physical intimacy? These are all important questions to consider, as you want to be prepared to handle uncomfortable situations or experiences. MAKE SURE YOU ARE IN CHARGE!

Keep Your Career Goals as an Utmost Priority

While college is a great time to meet people, it is important to remember why you are there in the first place. Your first priorities should pertain to your studies and career goals. Although relationships can be fun, they can also be VERY distracting. It may be a good idea to meet your significant other after you finish your assignments and tasks for the day. That way you won't fall behind in coursework. Plus, you'll be able to give him/her your full attention.

Get Involved in Groups that Share Your Similar Interests

You may be wondering how to meet guys or girls in the first place. Try joining study groups or groups based on your own interests or hobbies. For example, if you are interested in nature, you may want to join your university's branch of the outdoor's club. This will help you meet others that have similar interests to you. Even if you don't meet people to date, you will definitely make some good friends!

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