My grandparents met through letters. This simple exchange turned into a lasting relationship of happiness, fulfillment and true love – four children and 61 years of love to be exact. The most intriguing part about this? They were near our age when this meaningful relationship started.
Now I’m not saying that college is the place where we come to find love or that such a long-lasting love should be our present expectation. While on Twitter the other day, I came across an article titled “How a Whole Generation Forgot to Date” and felt as though there was something more to be said about that. Obviously the college age isn’t the time to settle down for most – seldom few people are looking to do so. However, it seems that on a small college campus, there is a lack of true relationships forming. Whether it’s the acquaintances with whom you go out or hookups, what happened to real relationships?
In our grandparents’ time, and arguably even our parents’ time, intimacy was much more of a private thing. It seems as though hooking up was less of a competition or a public display and more a sign of a true connection. Do we still form such connections nowadays? We are the first generation that is not part of the letter-sending era, so now what, it all relies on texting?
I can’t help but wonder in place of letters, what is our generation’s “thing”? There’s a lack of intimacy among people nowadays – and no, I’m not talking about physical intimacy – but actual intimacy, a true connection. There are those stories of forming a connection based on eye contact – sober eye contact, not the drunken stupor of the Jug kind of contact – or even letters as mentioned, but when is there ever a chance to make such contact nowadays? What will our generation tell our children? Will we be saying that we met at the Jug? Are we giving up forming actual connections for the ephemeral joy of a drunken night, when odds are it will lead to some sort of regret the following morning?
This isn’t to say that the relationships we form here are fake – they aren’t. Most people meet their best friends in college and form meaningful connections that last a lifetime. But what I’m wondering is, what happened to true intimacy on college campuses? I’m not saying that we should all be expecting to find our happily-ever-after in the near future, but isn’t there something to be said about finding something meaningful? While we shouldn’t all be expecting letters, shouldn’t we expect a bit more decency?