Being in relationships in your 20s is a mistake

[media-credit name=”Illustration by Reid Cammack” align=”alignright” width=”483″][/media-credit]

Between our fixation with dating apps, our love for shows like “The Bachelor” and our overuse of the term “bae,” our generation is obsessed with relationships. However, your 20s are the absolute worst time in your life to be in one.

Your 20s are the first and last time in your life that is really all about you. In your teens, you had to worry about what your parents wanted, and in your 30s, you have to worry about what your boss wants. Sure, you may have a job and/or school to worry about, but aside from that, you can do you. When you have a serious partner in your 20s, however, you have to do them, too. Pun very much intended.

As cliché as this sounds, your 20s are supposed to be about finding yourself, and it’s hard to do that if you’re devoting so much of your time and energy to another person. Twenty-somethings should have the freedom to take up new hobbies, switch jobs or maybe even move to different cities without feeling tied down or like they have to constantly update someone else on their every move.

I had the privilege of traveling through Europe with friends this summer, and there’s no way I would have been able to do that if I had a significant other back home. While it’s possible to travel with a partner, it’s a totally different experience from traveling with friends.

I’ve heard stories of people traveling with their significant other, and they ending up fighting the entire time. I’ve also heard stories of people in a relationship traveling without their other half and spending a considerable amount of time Skyping with them. One of my friends was even accepted to study abroad in France, but chose not to go because she had a boyfriend – and they broke up two months later.

When you’re a “real adult” traveling with a spouse and children, you have to pay for your kids’ airfare, accommodations, food, etc. in addition to your own, which makes that kind of trip even more expensive. Your 20s are one of the few times you can travel without anything holding you back.

No, I’m not just bitter because I’m single. I’ve been in serious relationships before, and it’s not my thing. I like being single, because I can do whatever I want. If I were planning on staying in on a Friday to watch Netflix, but then decided to go out instead, I can do that without affecting anyone else. The only person I have to make plans for is myself, and that’s the way I think it should be.

I’ve never been super monogamy-oriented, nor do I want to be. If I ever end up in another serious relationship, I don’t want it to be until I’m at least 30 years old.

Essentially, I just don’t see the rush to attach yourself to one person when you’re 20-something. You have the rest of your life to do that. Instead, spend your time and energy trying new things, traveling and not having to worry about anyone else except for yourself. Enjoy being 20-something while you can. You’ve got plenty of time.

Latest comment
  • Or… let people who want to be in a relationship in their 20’s be in a relationship. Who the heck cares? Why is there a “wrong” and a “right” thing to do in your 20’s? Gimmie a break dude.

    This is a pointless, baseless opinion with no newsworthy value to it, and absolutely zero research done as to how being single from ages 20-29 is actually better for you.

    Here’s a better opinion: Do what makes you happy. Not everyone is the same.

    – Cheers

    Thomas De Alba