Since I first entered high school, my dad enforced the rule, “Do everything in groups.” As an awkward freshman, I did not question this advice because I always felt more comfortable in group settings. One-on-one time put a lot of pressure on me to come up with interesting conversation topics. Plus, being with a group of friends always involved more random comments, more laughing, and more fun.
As a sophomore, I did not feel the need to constantly engage in small talk, which allowed more meaningful conversation to arise. Time spent alone with a person allows a bond to form based on the moments only you and the other person share.
While my dad’s rule has been an obstacle with some guy friends, after seeing my friends dating I have begun to realize the reason behind it. In high school, dating someone is just a good friendship with a little intimacy. At first, it may not seem like a big deal, but officially dating someone adds stress to your life. You wonder if you are pleasing the other person or meeting their expectations, and if the other person reciprocates your feelings. These feelings make the relationship about meeting expectations rather than just having a good time.
Some people are lucky enough not to be obsessed with these thoughts. However, they put a lot of energy into their relationships, texting late at night and spending time together, leaving little time for themselves, friends, and schoolwork. This consequence may prevent self-growth, and finding what you truly enjoy, which is an important part of going through high school.
So let your mind and schedule be free, which will make future relationships more meaningful and purposeful.