It has become a common notion among some in Generation Z that the dating world lacks potential in terms of effort, standards and respect. College is a time many of us get to know people that we would consider as a potential partner, which sometimes results in finding a life-long relationship. While finding a college sweetheart may sound great for some, for others, there is a feeling of hopelessness.
While dating, it is important to know what standards you have for yourself to set the tone on how a relationship will progress. Ironee Casey is a first-year criminal justice student at FAMU who knows that she will not allow guys to treat her however they want.
“It has been hard to find someone that fulfills my standards because most men are looking for something quick and easy and I am not at all,” Casey said. “I believe if you don’t set standards or even have high standards, it allows the person to treat you in an unwanted way.”
Many guys want similar characteristics in the women they date. Junior political science student Wilgames Jean says he has experienced fruitless relationships as a college student.
“I want someone who is very open-minded, non-judgmental, makes the relationship about me and them only and is motivated,” he said. “It has been very hard to find someone with all of those qualities.”
Loyalty and exclusivity are two attributes’ people desire in their partners but, unfortunately, unfaithfulness is a popular problem in the dating world.
Jaleigha Williams is a junior pharmacy major at FAMU who has been disappointed by guys wanting more outside of their relationship.
“I do not think I have experienced someone who has been able to not be invested in other people and actually focus on what we had going on rather than focusing on their ex’s or other women,” Williams said.
It’s easy to point fingers and blame other people for your problems in the dating scene, but Casey, James and Williams all believe that men and women are both playing a role in turbulent relationships.
“I think that both men and women play a part,” James said. “It’s hard for both men and women to trust each other due to having different agendas.”
If people clearly communicated their intentions when entering a relationship, Casey thinks the dating pool would improve. She believes that the lack of communication is another problem that is producing negative relationships.
Gaslighting has also become a prevalent problem in the dating pool, which is when someone manipulates you into thinking that how you feel about something isn’t right or truly how you feel.
“I feel like gaslighting isn’t talked about enough,” Williams said. “There is definitely a lot of manipulation when people are dating to get them to do things that they don’t necessarily want to do so that the other person can have their way.”
According to the National Domestic Violence Hotline, gaslighting is a form of emotional abuse that causes a person to lose their perception of reality and mistrust their own perspective.
Gaslighting seems to be impacting the dating pool. Victims of this phenomenon are more vulnerable and have less self-confidence in their decisions to be with someone who recognizes their self-worth. Once a person has built a connection with someone, it can be difficult for them to free themselves of the cycle of manipulation.
Williams believes that such problems are causing people to keep their guards up due to past traumatic relationships.
Many people are losing hope in the dating world as toxic behaviors become normalized in relationships. Is the current state of dating going through a bad phase or is this the new reality?