It is a sad truth that our generation is not as romantic as, say, our parents’ or grandparents’ generations were. Honestly, I don’t think most people today even know what romantic really means.
The dictionary defines romantic as an action or behavior that is done to woo a significant other or show a sign of love or affection. Using that definition, when was the last time someone did something romantic for you? When was the last time you did something romantic for someone else?
Our generation is very impatient and does not like to wait—we want what we want, and we want it now. We live in a world where things are readily available to us at the click of a button, whether that is food, a date, or sex.
In a world where things are so easily accessible, why would people want to put in the work? That is the mentality of many young people.
While this is not true for everyone, what I am going to say applies to most of our generation. The reason why some members of our generation have ruined what it means to be romantic is because they are not honest with other people, and sometimes they are not honest with themselves about what they want.
The latter begets the former.
When I met my ex-boyfriend, he was sweet and charming and even bought me flowers. He told me he had not felt this way about a girl in a long time and wanted a long-term relationship with me. But we were only two months into our official relationship when he said it was moving too fast.
The truth is he was young, and he was not ready to settle down. I understand that now, but he was not honest with me when we began dating. He told me what he thought I wanted to hear. By keeping the truth from me, he ended up hurting me more.
It is heartbreaking every single time you are led into a relationship under false pretenses. A failed relationship puts fear into your heart and make you more cautious. You know that everyone is not the same, but you cannot help but be scared that your heart might break again.
If you wonder why you are so jaded about romance, it is not because you were born like that—life experiences have made you that way. When someone who genuinely cares comes along, you have probably just given up. To the world, you may seem angry, but deep within, you are hurt and scared to love.
Dishonesty also happens in other ways, like if someone tells you that they are not looking for anything serious and you say you aren’t either when you secretly are. Unfortunately, while this seems to work in movies, it rarely works in real life. If you are looking for a hookup, you might lie to the other person that you want something more just to get in their pants.
This is not a situation to be hopeful about but a time to use your common sense. Cut your losses and don’t settle for anything less than what you want, whether it is a temporary romance or a lifelong commitment.
If you want more or less than what the other person is willing to give, be honest with yourself about your needs. Don’t assume or expect things to change and don’t hurt other people because it sucks to get hurt.
Grow up and don’t do things just to look cool in front of others. We are human—we are vulnerable because we have feelings.
Perhaps fear of abandonment and failure in the past has made you not even try in the first place. But if you are being a jerk because someone broke your heart in the past, you should know better than break someone’s heart.
If you are an adult, you need to take responsibility for your actions and decisions. If you don’t know what you want, leave other people alone.
Write a letter instead of shooting a text. Send someone flowers instead of offering to buy a drink at a bar. Pay attention to what they are saying instead of staring at your phone during dinner. Chivalry isn’t dead, it just isn’t practiced much.
When you are ready, invest yourself and your heart in a relationship, because it can bring joy into your life. Going out and partying are fun, but at the end of the day, we all want to go home to someone. We want someone to hold, someone to call our own. We want someone to love us the same way we love them.
Yes, we have lowered our standards, but now more than ever we also know what we deserve. Our generation may have ruined romance for now, but it’s not ruined for good.