Remove the label

Madison Fraitag

When I was in high school, it seemed like all anyone cared about was who liked who, who was dating who, who got dumped, who was a thing but not actually together and so on.

For me, this drama has been minimal. I have been in a steady relationship for nearly four years now and am often referred to as “mom” because of it. While, yes, I tend to be very nurturing and responsible, I do not believe this has anything to do with my relationship status.

Being in a long distance relationship in college is difficult enough, but trying to meet everyone else’s standards at the same time is nearly impossible.

Too often people make judgements based on whether or not someone is single. When a single girl chooses to go to Toad’s Place, it is assumed she is looking for a guy to make out with and never see again. When a girl goes with her boyfriend, people expect a disgusting show of PDA. When a girl in a relationship goes to Toad’s with her friends, people often question if her boyfriend is okay with it.

This is unacceptable. Every person, single or happily taken has a right to make any decision he or she wants to. Just because a guy is in a relationship doesn’t mean he’ll cheat. Just because a girl goes out without her boyfriend doesn’t mean she has to behave differently than her single friends.

If I had a dollar for every time people told me I shouldn’t go to Toad’s because I have a boyfriend, I would have enough money to go visit him. My behavior on the weekend and weekdays alike does not revolve around my boyfriend’s wishes. Yes, I respect him and wouldn’t do anything I wouldn’t want him doing when I’m not around, but I am a (sort of) adult woman who can handle herself without everyone making sure I’m living to someone else’s standards.

Beyond Toad’s, people make assumptions about others based on their relationship statuses everywhere. I’ve heard people say they only take certain classes to meet people, such as males taking nursing classes to meet women. Also, people often assume people dress a certain way solely to attract others. We should be able to look nice for ourselves, not just for others. Contrastingly, we should be able to dress comfortably without being stereotyped as boring or lazy because we have “no one to impress.”

After two years at Quinnipiac, I can confidently say that hookup culture is alive and well. While I firmly believe that everyone should be free to do whatever with whomever they wish, I also believe people should not be free to judge or assume what anyone else chooses to do.

Single or taken, it is no one’s business how you behave besides your own. If a single person wants to mess around with someone new every week, great! Be safe and have fun, that’s your choice. If someone is single and chooses never to do anything, okay! Cool! You do you, Honey Boo Boo child.

The most frustrating part of this is that it can so easily be fixed. If you can honestly say you do not wish to be judged by others for your personal decisions, you should be able to stop judging others based on theirs.

Next time you find out someone is in a relationship, don’t assume they’re “mom” or “dad.” If someone is single, that does not mean they are lonely or a “cat person.” People are not and should not be defined by their significant other or lack thereof.

Let’s stop breeding this thinking and appreciate people for themselves as individuals. It’s about time.