A Guide To High School Relationships

Nevan Campos, Opinion Editor

High school relationships can be a messy, beautiful, crazy thing. You’re always hearing about the latest break up, the newest tea, who cheated on who, the most scandalous hook-ups. It’s a whirlwind of drama! For all those reasons, a lot of people choose not to get into the high school dating scene. Hearing the drama rather than being the center of it is always a good choice, but a high school relationship can really help you grow as a person.

While many adults like to undermine the validity of a relationship in your teenage years, they’re a critical element in growing into a young adult. Putting yourself out there on the ‘dating market’ can help you learn more about yourself and your needs in a relationship and potential partners. Relationships can even help teens strengthen important communication and conflict resolution skills, according to livestrong.com.

If you’re gay or bisexual, finding relationships can be harder due to fear of homophobia. Thankfully, most high schoolers are mature enough to not be judgmental of gay relationships or even see them as ‘weird’. High school is a good time to branch out and meet more LGBT people, experiment, and maybe look for a significant other of your own. A first queer relationship is almost a landmark moment, and being with someone who has had the same experiences as you when it comes to attraction or coming out makes you feel less isolated and othered. A relationship is also a good way to immerse yourself more in the community.

Bad relationships aren’t enjoyable experiences at all, but they are learning experiences. Partners who turn out not be so good teach you what red flags to avoid later on in your relationships and strengthen your intuition. Along with that, people who stay too long in a bad relationship may find it easier to get along in a functional relationship later on.

All in all, high school relationships are an important part of maturing and becoming your own person with needs and desires of your own. Trying to save yourself the inevitable teenage dramatics is a valid choice, but you can’t shut yourself out forever. Instead, save your future college-age self the trouble and play the dating game now and figure out the rules as you go. It’s all in good spirits. You might even find your soulmate!