UR SURVIVAL: Dating and the Quarter-Life Crisis
Written by Andrea Duke
You know what sucks? Dating in your mid-twenties. I was a very good student in college, but one thing I did fail at was finding “the one”, or anyone for that matter. College is where we’re supposed to find our lifetime partners, right? Well, what exactly happens if you don’t? The pool of eligible men in college, suddenly evaporated the minute I stepped my pantsuit and comfortable heels into the corporate world. My coworkers are married, taken, or old enough to be my father. So, no luck there. Bars? Sure, there’s plenty of places to meet “young professionals”, but when’s the last time you met someone relationship worthy while sucking down whiskey gingers?
I’ll be honest; I’ve tried about everything to pacify my want for a relationship, and to calm my parents’ fears that I’m going to end up a lonely cat lady. From gathering my wingwomen for a night of scouring bars for potentials, to trying numerous online dating websites, and even having a sort of matchmaker service setting up me and two of my friends with three random guys. None of it has worked so far. So why in the world is it so difficult to find someone who’s looking for a relationship in their twenties?
Here’s my theory: The quarter life crisis. It’s an epidemic among our generation of 20-somethings as they enter the work force. Symptoms of the quarter life crisis include: anxiety, indecisiveness, fears of failure, self doubt, and tons of drinking as a result.
When we leave the comfortable routine of almost two decades of schooling, we begin to encounter a lot of overwhelming responsibilities, liberties and options that can leave us feeling indecisive and apprehensive. All these doubts about our ability to reach society’s expectations can also lead to a question of identity. Who are you? What’s your place in society? Can you make it?
If you’re a recent college graduate, entering a new career, making it on your own, you can completely relate to all of this. Life is pretty freaking confusing once you’re kicked out of the nest and left to learn to fly on your own. The last thing on most people’s minds is finding a relationship. Instead they’re in survival mode, just trying to be a functioning member of society.
So ladies, the next time you feel fairly hopeless about your future love life, remember this: you are not alone. Everyone our age is experiencing this; even people in relationships experience the apprehensions of just stepping out on your own. Don’t blame the crappy guy you met online who didn’t call you back after your first date, don’t overanalyze on why that guy at the park asked for your number but never rang, just stop worrying about it. Chances are, those guys are going through exactly what you are and have no idea what they want in life, and are probably too scared to admit it. Things will fall into place eventually, so for the time being, grab that margarita on a Tuesday night with your roommate; take that art class you’ve been dying to sign up for; enjoy life while you’re young and sooner or later, you’ll find someone to share it with.
Andrea Duke is a journalism graduate from Georgia State University in Atlanta. She is currently working as a Communications Coordinator for a international financial services company. She loves food, craft beer and English Premiere League soccer and believes the combination of the three is heaven on earth. Chat with her about her story on Twitter: @wild_trapeze