1. Doctor/doctor-in-training: You will quickly learn to despise the terms “on-call” and “residency.” While they are certainly an incredibly intelligent person, the degree to which their mind is being overworked at all times will often result in an inability to carry out simple tasks, such as emptying the dishwasher or reading a non-medical book every now and again.
2. Nurse: Basically all the functional knowledge of a doctor, but with less disposable income and much more practical application. They will be there with an eye-roll and an immediate solution every time you injure yourself, and will definitely have some insane stories at the end of a double shift.
3. Firefighter: Everyone will tell you how sexy it is, and you don’t want to be obnoxious about it, but yeah — it’s pretty sexy.
4. Personal trainer: Because they wake up at what was described as “Jesus Christ o’clock,” sleeping well will be near-impossible. It will also be a constant struggle to get them to wear anything close to “real” clothes and not just mesh shorts and/or spandex. (Of course, you’ll also be constantly feeling terrible about yourself because, come on, why aren’t you drinking a protein shake and SoulCycling at 6 AM? What is your excuse?? OORAH!)
5. An artist who is struggling: Get ready to hear about all of their promising meetups with “investors,” all of their “projects” that they’re currently “moving between,” and their “mission statements.” Of course, a lot of this just ends up meaning “please take care of the utilities this month,” and “don’t tell your friends that I work at Jamba Juice.”
6. An artist who is successful: 40 percent less attitude (because they actually have to work for a living, and respect deadlines, and treat clients as professionals), and 100 percent more money. The perfect balance! (Although they will occasionally refer to their “fans” and you will have to suppress vomit.)
7. Server: There will always be a flow of cash in the relationship, though that can often prove to be a bad thing, because them getting out at closing time combined with having a pocket full of cash often translates to a. lot. of. late. night. drinking. with. coworkers. Also, say goodbye to any kind of normal circadian rhythm, and I hope you enjoy afternoon sex!
8. Drug dealer: Similar to a server, in the sense that there is always a healthy amount of cash in the relationship, though obviously this comes from selling Adderall to teenagers, or whatever. But the drug dealer boyfriend is also known to have mostly preppy friends, punctuated by a friend with a one-syllable name like “Pig” or “Bone.” And the dealer will be really defensive about it, saying things like “Bone is actually really legit” and giving you the slitty eyes when you try to judge him.
9. Poli-sci major who has actually gone on to work in policy or campaigns: An artist’s temperament, with the kind of self-righteousness that could cut a diamond. They will tell you all about important policies, and who you should be voting for, and what magazines you should definitely not be reading. Everything will turn political eventually, and it will almost always end in argument, but you kind of knew that going in. (Their blazer game is always on-point, though.)
10. Bartender: There is no greater punishment in this world than dating the Hot Bartender. No matter who you were before, no matter how totally chill and not at all jealous you were, after a few months with Hot Bartender, you will be reduced to a constant state of panic and envy, as their job description is basically “flirt with everyone and be hit on by a constant stream of drunk, good-looking single people.” Free drinks, though.
11. PR person: This will always be a three-way relationship: You, them, and their mobile device. Accept it and move on.
12. Advertising/marketing professional: The three common elements in every relationship with an ad professional are: 1) Use of jargon in everyday conversations, even occasionally ones that are supposed to be romantic, 2) Explaining ads and campaigns to you like you’re a three-year-old, because you don’t “get it,” and 3) Working approximately seven trillion hours per week.
13. Perpetual intern: Their permanent ride on the career struggle bus will become yours, and the agony and ecstasy of trying to escape the intern world will consume you, as well. Because they will be working such long hours with such negligent compensation, they are almost guaranteed to be in a permanent bad mood, and your biggest job will become “cheerleader for their efforts to earn a living wage!”
14. Teachers, or teachers-to-be: The two of you will talk about standardized testing a lot more than you ever imagined possible, and will learn to love the times where they are neither grading, nor complaining about grading. But they will always have awesome stories about students, and the kind of nurturing personality that reminds you why your own good teachers were so important to you.
15. Lawyer: They’re either in it for justice, in which case they are poor, or they are in it for money, in which case they are mildly sociopathic. Choose wisely.
16. Consultant: You’ll never be able to accurately explain what they do, because part of you still doesn’t understand what they do yourself, but they will always be dressed well, doing something that seems important, and solving problems (even in their personal lives). If you can find one that works less than 80 hours a week, hold on for dear life.
17. Executive assistant: Technically the relationship is between the two of you, but practically, it’s between them and their boss. And you are in there somewhere, when there is time.
18. Retail worker: Get ready to hear horror stories about the customers, because retail workers are essentially modern Christ figures who take all of the emotional abuse that humans somehow only see fit to unleash while standing at a cash register. Also, 30 percent discountttttttt.
19. Military: As someone who once dated a Midshipman (USNA! Woo!), I can confirm that dating a millenial who is in the military is a totally different experience from dating literally any civilian profession. It’s not good or bad, per se, it’s just a huge reminder that what we commonly accept as “normal” points of view are not shared by a huge part of our country, and the “wars” we always talk about casually are actually being fought all the time by real people, with real lives, and real things to lose. Also, sexy uniforms and learning all of the jargon that you will eventually start using in your own life.
20. Chef: They will always be smelling like food, and not always in the good way. But you will get to be the Official Taste Tester for all of the delicious experimental recipes they’re trying out, and receive a constant stream of leftovers/surplus from the kitchen. Also, there will be a lot of wine.
21. Engineer/Computer Scientist: They have a good job that is both highly skilled and decently-compensated (and may lead them to be hella rich). They work (usually) reasonable hours. They are all of the good-on-paper things that anyone looking to settle down could ever want, with two striking drawbacks: Occasionally edging into the bitter asperger-y end of nerdiness where you trawl Reddit and resent people enjoying themselves at bars, and on at least one occasion wearing dad sandals. So it’s all about weighing out the pros and cons.
22. Urban planner: Bike lanes. Get ready to hear about bike lanes. (And I hope you enjoy arguing about gentrification for roughly 40 percent of your total relationship, even while having sex. Sex will be interrupted to fight about gentrification.)
23. Investment banker: Lol. (I was specifically instructed to not embellish or translate this statement, because apparently “lol” is the only accurate description of dating an investment banker.)
24. Hairdresser/makeup artist: You will serve as their dress-up doll for all of the various products and styles that they are currently trying out, but they will always look good, and if you follow their advice, you will, too.
25. Grad student: Be there for moral support, listen to their complaints about undergrads, and cry with them over financial aid disappointments. Be their rock, because otherwise they will float away into the ether of endless hours in the library and eating dining hall food at age 28. One day, they will be able to return the favor. Probably.