Dating makes for a better college experience

Dating can lead to better psychological health and help you stay on track with your goals

Whether I am at the Hayden Library, Starbucks or just traveling to class I am overwhelmed with the abundant sight of couples flooding the ASU community. 

I started wondering if they are better off than the single population on campus — does dating make for a better four years?

I envisioned dating as the perfect way to keep my new world in college intact. Someone to rely on and someone to rely on me seemed like the best way to keep me on track. I recently found out that it does.

Dating among emerging adults, ages 18 to 25, is a chance for them to experience the dating world and come to an understanding of what characteristics they desire in a partner for marriage. 

It's a kind of field test to weigh the pros and cons and suggests why emerging adults during this time have multiple relationships, according to Romantic Relationships in Emerging Adulthood, a book by a Florida State University professor, Frank D. Fincham, who studies marriage and partnership with a focus in social psychology.

These relationships continue to influence the individuals views of relationships for the future to come. College can be seen as a prime basis for students to explore their preferences as they seek a future partner. 

"There is a lot of research (funds, friends, faith) that shows being in a long-term stable relationship is linked with psychological well-being, and it's a pretty good guess that being in a stable relationship you are able to function better and focus on studying in school," said Douglas Kenrick, an ASU psychology professor.

However, psychology professors aren't the only ones who think dating can lead to psychological health, students also see the benefits. 

“I believe that a healthy relationship is super beneficial emotionally and personally, if you find the right person,” said junior Kenya Lofton. “If you aren’t happy in a relationship it can bad for all parts of your life.”

Entering a relationship gave me someone to keep me focused on a late night when I am doing homework, someone to motivate me to finish up my work and someone to listen about my day.

Lofton said that she found that she had a structured schedule for studying and getting homework done and found that when this relationship finished, she did not follow a schedule for when she would get work done.

“I found that after the relationship I would do my homework when I felt like starting it, depending on my mood,” said Lofton.

It is evident that for some making a schedule and sticking to it is not easy. Procrastinating and leaving work for the last minute is the booming story among many areas of society, and though it works out some days, there are some days it does not.

I feel that having someone that is as involved in my future as I am motivates me to stick to my goals.

“As humans being loved is very important, and we see on Instagram and social media 'bae goals' and ‘relationship goals,’ and because we place such importance on that, when it comes about we make it an integral part of our lives,” said Lofton.

I do not believe dating means failure or success, but finding a good person to be with makes the journey easier.

Reach the columnist at or follow @shemartomlison on Twitter.

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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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