I’ve made both bad and good decisions since *officially* becoming an adult last spring. Sometimes these choices have been really hard to make, but I’ve found that, once thinking them over, I tend to make the right decision. Last June, I broke up with my boyfriend of nearly a year and a half. It absolutely broke my heart, yet at the same time I felt an incredible weight lift off my shoulders as I ventured on into the next chapter of my life: college.
I have found many advantages to beginning college as a single woman, and I wanted to share a few of these with you today.
1. I don’t have to worry about breaking up with a long-distance partner.
If my ex and I had stayed together when I moved away, I know there would have been a lot of anxiety revolving around the course of our relationship. Moving to college is arguably one of the hardest transitions in life that a young person has to make, so there’s no point in increasing that burden by adding the stress of a relationship for the first couple months, or year. I have been very fortunate to have a smooth transition that hasn’t been bothered by past relationships.
2. I have more independence.
Not saying that I wouldn’t have had independence had we stayed together, but I’m saying that I am able to do things without feeling guilty. I can go to a party, I can flirt with the new people I like, I can hang out with friends of the opposite sex…I can do all of these things without thinking about my significant other in the back of my mind wondering, “What would they think of this?” It’s an amazing feeling being able to do what you want, when you want, without the worries of scolding or disapproval.
3. I have more time to make new friends.
I find that people who are in college and in a serious relationship spend nearly 40-50% of their time on the phone or Skype with their partner. Why would I want to limit myself to solely one person when I can be venturing out into new horizons on the beautiful campus where I live? Most people don’t even realize that they are spending a ridiculous amount of time talking to their boyfriend/girlfriend on Skype while ignoring the here-and-now that surrounds them.
4. When visiting home, I have more time to visit with friends and family.
I know for a fact that if I’d stayed with my ex, I would have wanted to spend every waking minute with him when I visited home. That would have limited me from seeing all of my great friends, and it would have severely hurt my family who love to see me. I am grateful that I am able to spend more time with all the positive people that I love, versus just one person.
5. I don’t feel any pressure to spend extra money.
Dating someone can be expensive. Fortunately, I don’t have to worry about spending money on dates, extra gifts or anniversary occasions. I can sit back, relax and buy things just for me.
6. I am able to find out more about myself.
When in a relationship, it’s easy to get wrapped up in the other person’s interests and way of living. Starting off with a clean slate—college—allows me to truly discover who I am as an individual. That’s what college is about, right? People go to college not just to get an education, but to strengthen themselves as individuals. I’m better off taking time to just focus on myself rather than a significant other as well.
7. This semester sets the precedent for the next four years of my life.
This fact is so, so important and it’s so, so easy to overlook when in a serious relationship. The first semester of college truly does act as a significant decider in how you play out the rest of your undergraduate career. You want the transition to be smooth (or as smooth as it can be) and you want to be able to adapt easily and quickly to your new environment. This isn’t going to be accomplished if you’re still emotionally (romantically) attached to someone back home. In order to focus on your future, sometimes you have to leave things behind.
College is a time for finding yourself and embracing adulthood freedoms. College is about new relationships and beginnings. College isn’t a time to struggle with things from the past, and that’s why I’ve started school as a single, independent woman.
Lead Image Credit: ABC Family