As the school year comes to a close, summer flings start to sizzle in the midst of college students returning home from their academic endeavors. However, these aspirations for “summer love” ought to come with a warning sign, as the result usually strays away from typical Hollywood outcomes.
Movies often play on the “summer romance” theme, like “The Princess Bride” and “Dear John,” following a cookie-cutter plot of hopeless love developed between unlikely characters in a short period of time. Then, summer ends and the couple must make a choice: to stay together or to part ways and never look back.
Most films have a touching ending: They end up happily back together through some miracle. Unfortunately, this is not usually the case for us in the real world. That’s why we ought to proceed with caution.
Summer is a time to “be free” from the weighing commitments of school; we finally get a break from classes, homework and studying. But that doesn’t mean we should throw away our self-respect and disregard our general standards just because it’s summer.
Summer flings are notorious for being spontaneous, starting quickly and being all-consuming. While there’s nothing wrong with finding someone special with whom to share time off from school, emotions are heightened to a maybe irrational level because of all the extra time.
“The thing about summer romance is that it can change from subtle to intense in the blink of an eye,” Kovie Biakolo of Thought Catalog said. “Your usual careful nature is transformed to a carefree person who only wants to exist in the present.”
By only wanting to “exist in the present”, we tend to forget school is only a few weeks away. Being so wrapped up in a short-term relationship can hinder our ability to prepare for the coming semester or, even worse, get our priorities in a mix.
Summer, a short three months of the year, is just that: short. Both parties need to be on the same page about the intensity and true motive behind the relationship from the start. Standards and reasoning shouldn’t alter from school year to summer. Our expectations should remain consistent.
“Summer flings are what they are. They’re short and sweet. If both people know that, then it’s OK.” Matt of Bedford, New York, told Seventeen.
Summer is also a time to get reconnected to old friends and family that may have gotten lost in the schedule from the school year. With a summer fling, time is further sectioned off for certain people, sometimes taking away attention from those who have seen you less and less.
Unfortunately, summer just reinforces “hook-up” culture ever more with the vulnerable emotions many are drive by. Our youth sometimes goes to great extremes to make this the “best summer ever.” Summer flings are often rolled into those plans.
“’Summer fling’ is a loosely defined term, so make sure to talk about it with your guy so no one gets hurt,” Seventeen advises. “If you’re looking to make your fling something more, make sure he’s on the same page as well.”
While relationships are healthy and summer is a great time to enjoy the company of others, it’s important to stay smart and mature about romance decisions. Dating is a wonderful option to learn about a potential partner and more about your own likes and dislikes. However, seeking a passionate summer fling is not recommended for your heart or your summer.
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Editor’s note: The opinions presented in this column are the author’s and do not imply any endorsement from The State Press or its editors.
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