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Pros and Cons: To date or not to date in university

by Daniele Iannarone January 21, 2014
Pros and Cons: To date or not to date in university

Graphic by Jennifer Kwan

PRO

by Daniele Iannarone

Making the shift from high school, to college, and then university in the span of just three years is a big jump. School becomes more serious and students need to adapt and manage their time accordingly. While in university, students mature from young adult to adult alongside experiencing the transition from being in school to having a career, which leaves the question: to date or not to date?

Many single university students may wonder how students in relationships can find time to devote to their significant other while coping with the stresses of school and work. Being in a relationship does mean that you are going to spend time with your significant other, but that does not mean it has to be detrimental to one’s grades or motivation when it comes to school.

I have been in a relationship for a little over a year, and I am now in my second semester at Concordia.

Before Concordia, I attended Dawson College, and in my first two semesters at Dawson, while I was single, my marks were decent. However, during my final two semesters at Dawson, while I was in a relationship, my marks were actually much better. Even now, at Concordia, I manage my time accordingly so that I can balance school, homework, work, friends and a relationship, (maybe I sacrifice a bit of sleep, but not too much).

How do I do this? Simple. I make sure that two nights a week, usually Friday and Saturday, are strictly devoted to going out and seeing my friends and/or girlfriend — we also happen to have the same friends which is an advantage.

I work weekends during the day, which leaves weekday evenings for homework. I also see my girlfriend during my breaks when I’m at school and whenever I can spare some time. I have a busy schedule, yes, but I’m able to manage it.

In retrospect, if students don’t spend time going to see their partner, chances are they’ll probably spend it going to bars with friends, and for me, I can honestly say that I don’t go out any more now than I did when I was single.

Obviously it depends on the person you’re dating, but in a strong relationship, dating can definitely serve as extra motivation to do well in school and to get your work done on time so you can permit yourself to see your significant other.

Partners work together to try to eliminate each other’s bad tendencies and encourage a healthy and responsible life. This includes helping each other alleviate stress and boost morale.

A study conducted by the Journal of American College Health in 2010 in Cincinnati, OH, looked at single men and women, versus men and women in a committed relationship during their college studies to determine whether being single or being in a relationship correlated with higher rates of depression or alcohol use.

According to the study, being involved in a committed relationship during university reported fewer depressive symptoms for women than men. Men in relationships show slightly more depressive symptoms than single men, but the gap is not substantial. The study also concluded that students involved in relationships have stronger mental health.

For these reasons, dating is not only manageable in university, but an advantage. If you date the right person, your experience will be that much better. Isn’t that what relationships are for? To encourage and motivate each other to be the best that you can be?

Plus, who doesn’t enjoy spending time with someone you really like.

Study:  http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/07448481.2013.773903#.UtP_WPRDv6Q

 

CON

by Nathalie Laflamme

Love. Relationship. Boyfriend. Girlfriend. University.

Which of these words doesn’t belong?

Dating is great, and school is great, but how can we know if they work well together?

Relationships, and everything they entail, are crucial life experiences. Even when they end badly, we learn from them. Dating while in school can be quite tricky, and can bring forth a lot of challenges. Some people can overcome them, while others can’t.

I have been in a relationship with the same person for almost five years now — since my fourth year of high school. Although I am definitely not the same person that I was back then, being in a relationship has worked for me.

I am the happiest when I’m in a relationship; but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t any cons to being half of a couple.

During the past two years that I’ve been studying at Concordia, I have noticed that there are many things that aren’t so great about having a boyfriend during school.

First, one must deal with the main part of every relationship: falling in love. For some, this can have a negative impact on one’s education. Whether you’ve experienced it yourself or seen it in the movies, the symptoms of falling in love are always the same: you can’t sleep, can’t eat, constantly daydream about the person you care about, and generally can’t concentrate on anything, least of all your school work. All you want to do is spend time with the person you have met, and everything else comes second. This can, evidently, have a negative impact on your grades and extracurricular activities.

Second, being in a relationship changes your social life — something that is very important to most college students. For example, going out to bars with your single girlfriends. This can become an awkward experience because it means that you can’t hook up with people you meet in bars — something that I am sure most people would consider a bad thing if you’re in a relationship. You may also feel the need to mention to every guy you speak to that you have a boyfriend right off the bat, so as not to accidentally lead them on, which can also be awkward. As the night drags on, you’ll most likely be stuck drinking alone as your friends meet single hotties.

Third, there’s always the possibility that a relationship will end and this is a risk that people have to be willing to take when throwing themselves into the depths of love and lust. When serious relationships end, it doesn’t matter whether you were broken up with or if you decided to end it, at the end of the day, you will both be heartbroken. Just like the beginning of a relationship, the end of one can have a serious impact on your life. The symptoms of heartbreak can make studying, and even going to class, very difficult to accomplish, and can have a negative impact on your grades.

Being in a relationship works well for me, but that doesn’t mean that it is always easy. Relationships mean taking risks, and having to make sacrifices. All people and relationships are different; some may be a little more dramatic than others.

Your priorities may also affect whether a relationship in university would work for you. If you are set on going out every few days, or if you spend all of your time studying, relationships may not be right for you during university.

Still, only you can know for sure. I think that the only way of finding out what makes you happy and successful in your studies is to try it out and see for yourself.

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