Media isn’t everything

Maya Scahill, asst. a&e editor

Starting from a young age, many are exposed to the idea of perfect relationships, especially from movies like High School Musical to classics like 10 Things I Hate About You and Clueless. When I got to high school, I wondered when I would find the Troy to my Gabriella, when my dream man would come and sweep me off of my feet. But now, as a junior over halfway done with high school, that still hasn’t happened.

There have always been certain expectations of when to have a relationship and what it should look like. As kids, we are exposed to fairy tale movies with picture-perfect couples who are destined to stay together forever. The movies I watched as a kid often starred two high school students who fell in love and had the perfect relationship. 

Going into high school, I automatically assumed a relationship like that would happen to me too. Seeing friends get asked to Homecoming or holding hands with their significant others often made me envious. However, as I saw those relationships, I realized that there was nobody, at least at my high school, that I wanted to experience that with.

While high school may seem like your entire world, the reality is that there are many amazing people you’ll meet in the future who didn’t go to your high school. In my years at South, I’ve never had a serious crush on a classmate. Sometimes I have felt behind and frustrated that there was nobody at school for me. 

While that can be sad, knowing that you’ll never have a relationship at school can be freeing. In addition, not seeing someone every day lets you look back at your experiences with them in a more positive light. Knowing that there will never be that awkward drama of having an ex in your class or getting jealous when you see someone you dated holding hands with someone else in the hallway is relieving in its own way.

While movies and books paint a positive and perfect view on relationships, being in high school has done the opposite. Whether you have had a relationship yet or not, what you read about in stories and see in movies is often not the reality and cannot meet those unrealistic expectations. Seeing friends talk about how amazing their boyfriends are just to find out they got cheated on or broken up with is heartbreaking, but it’s also real. Many high schoolers are just not mature enough to be in relationships, and while high school relationships can be nice while they last, it’s important to know they probably won’t last forever.  

I often find myself straying away from any potential relationships if I’m not completely obsessed with someone in every way. What people often forget is that even though many don’t feel like it, high schoolers are young, and leaving high school single or even without ever having a serious relationship is completely normal. Your high school years happen at a time when most people aren’t sure who they want to be or what the future holds. People are still finding out who they are, and for many, that means they are not ready for a real relationship yet, and that’s ok.