I had a friend in high school who was obsessed with two things: One, musical theater; two, the fact that she didn’t have a boyfriend. We all have someone we in our lives who is constantly fretting about the fact that they’re single (hell, maybe you’re that person), and the ones who angst about it the most are often the ones who have never really been in a relationship in the first place. That means their only understanding of one comes from an outsider perspective, based on whatever they’ve seen in their friend group or in movie and TV. In other words, their idea of what it means to be in a romantic relationship is totally–for lack of a better word–romanticized.
Don’t get me wrong, a good relationship is a totally understandable aspiration! Who the hell doesn’t want somebody they can make out with and laugh with and hang out with whenever they want? I’m just saying that it’s also really easy to get tempted by what one images are all the positive aspects of a relationship while remaining blissfully ignorant to what a relationship is really like, through the good and the bad. So let me demystify some of this for y’all: Here are eight common misconceptions about being in a relationship that need to die already.
You're Usually Doing Something Exciting When You're Spending Time TogetherHere's the truth about relationships: Most of the time you're just loafing around, swapping memes and goofing off. This is fun, sure, but it's not exactly one's idea of the most romantic thing in the world. Romance doesn't just come in the form of giant teddy bear gifts or nice dinners; it's the little things that nobody really talks about that become your most intimate moments. Submarine
You'll Be HappierIf you're hoping that a relationship--that special fuzzy feeling of love and adoration--is what you need to feel better about yourself, to be happier, to get a fresh start...sorry to break it to you, but you're in for disappointment. Sure, relationships can definitely make you happy, but don't expect them to completely re-haul your self image, cure your depression, etc. Going into a relationship assuming that this will be the case will also put a lot of pressure on your partner, which can be detrimental to the health of your relationship. This sounds cliche AF, but the key to being happier and feeling better about yourself cannot be found in someone else, it's all you. Do what you have to do to get yourself in check; you can be in a relationship while you do this, but that's not the solution. Blue Is The Warmest Color
You Can Fix Them If You're Around Long EnoughIt's really easy to find yourself in a relationship in which you spend most of your time trying to play emotional crutch or inspire your partner to become a new person. This is especially common in your teens, when the angst factor is high. Relationships aren't the best way to go about this, no matter what you think. This idea that the power of love and your presence is enough to completely change someone is...a little arrogant. Don't get into a relationship with this goal in mind, at all. 10 Things I Hate About You
You Won't Crush On Other PeopleYou're going to feel affection toward other people. You're going to think people are hot. You're going to fantasize about other people. And guess what? So will your partner. Guess what else? This is not going to send your relationship crumbling down unless one of you acts on it. But don't worry if you find yourself thinking someone walking past you is a hottie while you're sitting with bae, it's going to be okay. Bye Bye Birdie
You're Hooking Up...A LotSure, you might be seeing a lot more action than you did when you were single, but that doesn't mean you're going to be a hookup machine. Every couple is different on this front, and some don't even hook up all that much at all thanks to, you know, life getting in the way. Please, don't get into a relationship just because you want to make out and have a lot of sex. They're generally a little more involved than that. Skins
You Agree On EverythingListen, there are going to be things that you value too much to have a partner disagree with you about them. For example, I couldn't date someone who hesitated to say that black lives matter, or that women are subservient to men. But OMG, there are so many things that you and your partner can totally not see eye to eye about, and that's...not the end of the world. At all. You guys don't have to like the same kind of music, like the same politicians, care about the same sports, etc. This idea that good couples are so compatible because they are always on the same page and never disagree with each other is BS. That '70s Show
It's All FunRelationships take work to function normally and happily for long periods of time. They might seem like they just magically fall in place, and they can...at first. But then the honeymoon period is over, and s**t gets real. It's up to both of you to put the work in and maintain it, not just assume that if it's a good relationship, everything will always be peachy. That's just not realistic. Skins
Fights Are Always A Big DealSure, some fights are really bad and can lead to a break up. Plenty aren't. A lot of fights you'll have are usually pretty harmless, petty disagreements or miscommunications. They'll happen, and anyone who acts as if they don't is suspect if you ask me. Focus less on whether or not you and your partner get into fights and more about how you resolve them. She's All That
What other misconceptions are there? Do you think that dating is overrated? Tell us in the comments!