Crushed by Crushes

High school relationships are common, but are they healthy?


Ria Gupta

Graphic illustration representing the yearning for the comforts of companionship.

Dating is one of the prospects of kids getting older. Naturally, people are going to want to love and feel loved in return, that’s human nature. The idea of “the one” being out there is enticing to many, but actively searching for them is not always the way to go. 

In middle school and high school, dating can be a thrilling experience. While some people end up with high school sweethearts, most of the time those relationships aren’t long term. People will continually date, looking to fill that void of love in their life. After all, dating apps were invented for a reason. But before younger people can reach the age requirement to join one, there may be jealousy when they see their friends in a relationship, leading them to seek a relationship just so they can say that they’re in one too. 

Senior Sally Craig, who is currently single but has friends in a relationship commented, “I think it’s just a given, if you see a relationship most people are going to be like, ‘I wish I had that.” 

Craig also expressed her doubt on the maturity of younger people actively seeking relationships, saying, “Kids are developing. They don’t have any world view, and so it’s very limited what they think is normal. How to be a good person [for example], they haven’t really learned it yet cause they’re not fully developed and they’re not very mature. I feel like they just haven’t been through enough life experiences. When you’re little you think [love] is happiness and liking each other, but as you get older you realize it’s more complicated.” 

Junior Rachel Zhai, who has been in a relationship for almost a year, agrees that people shouldn’t pressure themselves to date. “Relationships, the best ones I think happen naturally,” she said.

 Zhai continued, “That doesn’t mean that someone isn’t seeking them out, it just means that they’re not making this part the sole purpose of their time in high school. When you make dating the sole purpose of your life, you can’t focus on other really important parts of school, like your grades and taking classes that challenge you and actually studying these things. When you’re actively seeking just the idea of a relationship, I feel like you’re more likely to miss red flags because you hold such a romanticized view of the relationship as a whole.”

While there’s nothing wrong with wanting a relationship, having one shouldn’t be the sole focus of someone’s life. The first two years of high school are essential in finding who you are as a person and determining what you’re gonna do with your life after. Some people may find “the one” in high school, and some people won’t. But the most important relationship someone can have is a healthy relationship with themself, before they can commit to loving someone else.