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The news site of Ludlow High School

The Cub

The news site of Ludlow High School

The Cub

Single and Fabulous?

A Look into High School Dating Culture at LHS
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It’s relationship season at LHS and in just its first two weeks I’ve seen five new couples emerge holding hands, being obnoxious. By obnoxious I mean that I have seen couples displaying their love very enthusiastically in the halls, something known as PDA or “Public Displays of Affection.” 

It’s disgusting. 

I don’t want to see couples swapping spit at seven o’clock in the morning. I would hope no one would. 

Along with this troubling and disturbing practice, is how these relationships come to be. If you think high school couples meet at our local Big Y or in shared classes, you need to come back to the 21st century; everything is online. People meet their supposed “soulmate” on Snapchat, an app I think should be outlawed past 8th grade. These changes in traditional relationship finding and having is something I’d like to explore at LHS and beyond. 

PDA

“Public Displays of Affection,” or as I put it “Public Displays of Atrocity,” is the act of displaying affection for your significant other in public. At Ludlow High School it goes far beyond just affection and into disgusting acts of teenage hormonal impulse. The amount of times I have been stuck behind the slowest and most giddily-in-love couples that just kiss and walk is troubling. Why is it normalized to just makeout in the cafeteria at seven o’clock in the morning? Why is it normal to be so physically close to another person? I almost want to scream, “Six feet, six feet,” like we are in some covid hellscape again. 

Don’t get me wrong, there are some cute couples who don’t overdo it, but that doesn’t take away from the disgusting acts I begrudgingly witness every day. LHS Sophmore Ashlyn Mortimer (self-proclaimed relationship expert) says, “Ew,” to those couples who commit these acts. 

There will be times I am peacefully walking down the hallway, listening to Lana Del Rey, serene, when I am visually assaulted by couples. They spawn in left and right, almost in an attempt to annoy me. This is not me being bitter, this is me not wanting to see two of my peers canoodling, while smelling vape from the bathroom, and hearing freshmen screaming. When those three forces come together that’s how I know I’m living the true highschool experience. 

Snapchat

Snapchat has changed the way relationships in high school run. These Snapchat-born relationships start with a click; they add each other as friends. They will then Snap each other pictures of half of their face, ceilings, and the occasional picture of their actual faces in some bold attempt to win their lover over. They will possibly text, maybe move over to iMessage by means of iMessage games, or will remain just snapping. Almost all of these exchanges lead to sad almost-relationships or “situationships.” My friend Megan says, “Snapchat-born relationships never work out cause they’re always fake and they just want to do naughty things.”

Snapchat is where these situationships are born, a new piece of Gen Z lingo that can be translated into normal people language, as a non-committal and undefined romantic relationship. My definition of these relationships is, simply put, a waste of time. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve seen situationships that have miraculously molded into relationships. However, those relationships have ended in either cheating, incompatibility, boredom, or all three. 

Social Media

When the simple act of liking a post has turned into some huge grand gesture of romance, how convoluted has social media made relationships? From the dreaded unfollow, to the disastrous liking of a story, social media has turned the simplest acts into soul-crushing and life-ending feats. 

There have been many occasions I have witnessed where an Instagram story is accidentally liked. It’s almost like the world stops turning on its axis. Oh no! Some guy from ’Chaug is going to think you’re in love with him because you liked his story reposting some rappers’ album announcement. It is crazy to me that something as surface level as that is considered some new flirting method. 

Another new method of flirting is playing iMessage games. It is insane that the act of playing darts over text with someone is practically what second base was in the 90s. 

The Boyfriend Phenomenon

This year I’ve noticed something I’ve started calling The Boyfriend Phenomenon. A phenomenon where teenage girls become completely enthralled with the idea of a boyfriend. With this comes a constant need to talk about guys, the prospect of dating, and how much they need a “man.” 

In my opinion, dating in high school is pointless. 

To some that is crazy. They can’t believe a life without their precious teenage lover. Some people’s only goal is to find their future husband or wife in high school. Others are vehemently against the whole idea of relationships. My single friend Sophia falls somewhere in between. She believes, “I like guys, but I have too many history notes.” There is nothing wrong with wanting a boyfriend; however, if a girl exclusively talks about guys, it is excruciating. 

Not to hate on teenage boys, but they are not all that. Most stink, others egos are bigger than they are, only a small fraction are ok. The idea of devoting my life, and most of my conversations, to these vessels of b.o. and immaturity, is an impossibility for me.

I fear for the girls who have this obsessive ailment; they almost live for guys. The makeup they put on is for guys, the clothes they wear are for guys, everything they do is for the appeasement of men. Every conversation they have is centered around the guys they are talking to, or how much they want a boyfriend to parade around with. Some of these girls have a “roster,” or a list of guys that they are talking or snapping with. I think this is a crazy concept. This is obviously not all girls, but it is enough for me to take notice. 

Getting the Guy

Once these relationships start, what happens? I’ve seen one of two things happen. 1. life goes on as normal, this is the best way. My friend has recently gotten a boyfriend, she is an example of one of these rare occasions where this happens. A boyfriend should not uproot your life, especially not in high school. 

  1. Friends are left behind and the boyfriend is put first. Regarding this Mrs. Masse says, “You shouldn’t spend all your time with your high school boyfriend.” I have seen this happen many times, the friends get ditched as soon as the enigma that is a boyfriend arrives. Mrs. Masse says that “You should spend time with your friends because when you break up you won’t have any friends left.” 

What’s Wrong With Being Single?

You should spend time with your friends because when you break up you won’t have any friends left.

— Mrs. Masse

I’ve been told many times that being single in high school is some sort of curse, bestowed upon those who are unlucky enough to not secure a relationship. I don’t understand the problem with having no interest in a relationship. I enjoy my free time, I can’t imagine a world where that free time is filled with texting some guy or wallowing over my lack of a guy.  If you need a boyfriend to be happy or fulfilled you need to do some serious self-reflection. 

High School is for figuring out who you are, setting up a future for yourself, and enjoying the years of little to no responsibilities. Finding your future husband or wife can wait. In most cases relationships cause unnecessary drama and stress that can be very easily avoided. 

Reflection

There have been times when I have wanted a boyfriend. Specifically when my parents won’t buy me expensive perfumes, or when my friends don’t want to watch the movies I like, but overall I’m not sure those are great reasons to pursue dating. I mean how many teenage boys can afford Dolce and Gabbana working at our local Big Y?

Looking for young love is a noble endeavor I suppose. I mean when teenagers are constantly hit in the face with these perfect high school couples on TV, one can fall in love with the idea.  

I am no Carrie Bradshaw, but I do know this — dating in high school is not for the weak.

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About the Contributor
Emilia Alves
Emilia Alves, Staff Writer
Emilia Alves is a part of the Class of 2026 at Ludlow High School. This is her first year being a part of The Cub. She is a part of many clubs such as, art club, drama club, LHS Cares, and Portuguese club. Some of her interests outside of school include drawing, photography, reading memoirs or classics, playing guitar, listening to music, and creative writing. Emilia hopes to go to a prestigious college and become either a doctor or a journalist.

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  • L

    LinMay 18, 2024 at 4:28 pm

    Is that image AI generated? What’s going on with the fingers?

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  • S

    sandra applwMay 17, 2024 at 12:05 pm

    this is the best thing i’ve read since the federalist papers!!!!!

    Reply