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A Collegiette's Guide to Life
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    All relationships have different stages of developing. Many of us have heard about the honeymoon and puppy love stages, but what about the commitment stage? This period of stability and seriousness in young couples seems to be fleeting with the rise in popularity of casual sex and low-key relationships. Because of this, people are either too embarrassed to have "the talk" to define the relationship or they tend to stay with people who are just never going to fully commit. If one person is expecting much more than the other, it's going to lead to massive disappointment from the lack of progression in the relationship. Here are some ways to know if you’re with someone with no desire to be your long term serious bae.

    1. They only contact you to hook up

    This is one of the clearest signs someone is not interested in a full-blown relationship. The difference between hooking up and committed relationship is a mutual understanding that you care about each other and want to spend time with one another outside of the bedroom. Sorry, but sending a “u up?” at 1:50 a.m. might mean they only want one thing, and it’s not a relationship.

    2. Going on dates is out of the question

    In conjunction with the reason above, dates are obviously not a priority to the noncommittal person. Both planning and showing up to dates requires time, energy and money that this person is not willing to expend. However, you’re allowed to have certain expectations.

    Sarah*, a sophomore from Lehigh University, understands this quite well. “I used to hook up with this guy who would only try to hang out in his bedroom or mine,” she says. “He was clearly only interested in sex and not going out more. I moved on.” That’s an explicit example of someone who is simply not looking for something serious, or not looking for something serious with you.

    3. They're not interested in meeting your friends or family

    Perhaps you thought things were going well and maybe it would be appropriate to invite your hookup buddy to a family gathering or even a friend’s birthday brunch. But instead of attending the function with you, your offer has him or her running for the hills instead. This could be a sign that you’re either moving too fast for them toward a relationship, or they’re simply not interested in taking this step altogether. Healthy relationships involve making memories together and reaching milestones that everyone is comfortable and excited aboutDragging your hookup buddy to meeting your parents they don’t even want to meet is quite the contrast to something wholesome and relationship-worthy.

    Getting to know your SO's parents and family is a big deal and should not be taken lightly since these are the people your girlfriend/boyfriend grew up/spends time with. For example, It's normal to have your significant other's parent's phone number once you're in a committed relationship. By the same token, your significant other should want you to meet and get to know the important people in his or her life as well. Committed people are immersing their lives together, and that usually involves meeting the people they spend time with on the regular.

    4. Spending holidays together will never happen

    As holidays approach, it starts to become a bit clearer if someone is interested in being with you long-term. Spending a holiday together might seem like a harmless offer, but it might be too big of a step for them to handle. Perhaps getting drunk together at a 4th of July barbecue seemed casual and non-committal at first, but having your family ask them what they want to do with their life might scare them away. Sophie*, a sophomore at Lehigh University, says she once "went to a holiday party with a guy who ended up crying about his ex saying he needed to figure himself out before fully moving on." She thinks the act of spending holidays together was a step taken too soon. Even if it’s a simple event, holiday parties are typically somewhere you can show off your SO–which is definitely not a place a person not willing to commit would want to go.   

    Related:5 Signs You Really Are Afraid of Commitment 

    5. They only communicate through Snapchat or text

    In a world where connecting and conversing has never been easier with the help of smart phones, avoiding committed relationships have also become a norm among young millennials. Rachna, a freshman from Dartmouth College experienced someone who only “texted or Snapchated but never wanted to meet up in person.” The famous beginning stage of relationships known as “talking” – where both parties are communicating mainly through their phones – is common in this day and age, but when this stage never evolves into more intimate meetups, couples tend to fall into a lingo of remaining “together, but not like dating.” You want to avoid this if you’re looking for a relationship. Hint:it’s not that romantic to get a text first if that’s all you get from them.

    6. Conversations are mostly about hooking up

    Maybe you do extend your conversations outside of the realm of Snapchat and iMessage, but what is the actual quality of your discussions? Is the content mostly about sex and the next time you’re going to do it? If so, remember that a healthy relationship has a lot to do with caring about the well-being of the other person. There’s much more substance to learn about your SO than just their sexual preferences, and if someone is not willing to learn about that, then they are probably not willing to be in a relationship.

    7. They send you mixed signals

    Maybe you don't resonate with the obvious signs of noncommittal reasons above, but something still doesn't feel right. One day your significant other is saying how he can see you in his future, but he doesn't bother taking you to his brother's wedding. Phoebe, a sophomore from Lehigh University experienced this early on when a guy "said cute things one day and I thought it was flirting, but then the next day he'll treat me like a bro. And the next interaction is flirty again. It's like the most confusing thing until I finally realized it wasn't going to happen." If what he says doesn't measure up exactly to how he's treating you, it's a sign that he has no intention of a serious relationship.

    8. They are scared of typical relationship milestones

    This one is a big one for people who are technically "dating," but one person's needs are not being met entirely. Partially to blame is the #goals tag on Instagram filled with couples holding hands in exotic places and kissing expensive jewelry together. Contrary to popular belief you don't need to do this! However, it's perfectly normal to post pictures online of you and your SO. It's 2017! Not only should you feel comfortable sharing photos of your relationship, but your significant other should be comfortable with it as well. No one should feel the need to validate their relationship online, but it's quite normal to create memories together in a healthy manner. Some normal committed relationship behavior involves taking photos, planning future trips, buying gifts in advance. Basically, it's a good sign if they're not afraid of seeing you in their future plans. If your partner tends to back away when things get too relationship-y and public, then maybe it's a sign they aren't looking for a serious relationship after all.

    Relationships are about being comfortable and happy with the arrangement. If you’ve read this feeling defeated that you or your potential SO is probably not looking for a relationship, don’t sweat it. Sometimes the timing – or even the person – isn’t right. There is no perfect way to enter into a relationship, but there are healthy habits. If you’re experiencing any of the above and you’re not happy with it, it’s okay to speak your mind. Good luck!

    *Names have been changed.

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    Since I never actually told you how I felt, I guess it’s more my own fault than yours. Everything was too complicated and it wouldn’t have made a difference, so in the end I just didn’t say anything. But on the other hand, I didn’t really try to hide it, either. At least, I didn’t think I did. Maybe how I felt wasn’t as obvious as I thought it was, but every time you looked at me I just hoped you’d realize. 

    It sucks watching the person you love give his love to someone else. In my mind she’ll never be the one for you. She couldn’t be—because I am. In my mind, you’re making a huge mistake. So I thought about fighting for you, thought about biting the bullet and telling you how I felt, thought about the way you might tell her you were sorry and that she's great but you were in love with someone else. I thought about it, but didn’t do it.

    Maybe what’s meant to be really will be, and maybe she makes you happier than I would, so I tried not to think about you. I tried to act like it wasn't killing me to see you with her, like it didn't affect me. I tried to ignore the lump in my throat every time your mom brought up her name or the feeling in my stomach when I saw you two together. I thought that maybe if I ignored it, it would go away.

    It hasn’t gone away.

    I’m at a loss. I can’t decide if I should try to wait it out or try to move on. Even the prospect of dating anyone else seems impossible. It's unfair—you have me wrapped around your finger, and you have no idea.

    It just doesn't make sense to me. How can someone who makes me feel the way you do be meant for somebody else? When I asked you what your type was and you described me to a T, did you even realize? How can all of our shared laughs, and car rides, and singing along to country music in your truck, and lingering looks and hesitant touches not mean anything at all? How does all of that add up to a relationship with somebody else?

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    Forget about first exams and getting to know your randomly picked roommates…one of the most intimidating things to navigate as a newly enrolled freshman collegiette is the on-campus dating scene. In high school, it was easy to meet guys who already lived in your hometown. But in college, the dating rules are different, and it’s not always so easy to meet guys. Where can you find them? How do you impress them? How do you avoid being dismissed by them as just another frat party-hopping freshman girl? We’ve asked girls and guys across the country about the first-year college dating scene to bring you this tell-all guide on how to meet guys as a freshman girl(and how not to be that freshman).

    Where to meet him:House parties

    Maybe it was his slick dance moves or his mad flip-cup skills, but whatever it was, it’s thrown you head over heels for this Campus Cutie. So how do you get his attention? Katie King from Western Michigan University says that steering clear of the row upon row of frat houses and opting instead to hit up house parties can be a great way to meet older college guys and stand out from crowds of freshman girls. “A ton of freshman girls go to the frats, but that is what kind of makes you stick out as a freshman,” Katie says. “Talk to tons of people and try to go out with them. House parties are usually the best place to meet older guys.” House parties tend to be a more intimate setting for meeting guys: there are usually fewer people there and so it’s easier to chat up that cutie!

    How to impress him

    Be fun and flirty! Just remember that there’s a fine line between being the life of the party and being “that party girl” (LiLo, anyone?). Zachary from Wake Forest University says you should be careful about hooking up with too many guys too quickly or you’ll end up with a reputation that reaches all the way to the upperclassmen. “I guess if hooking up is what you’re all about, then have at it,” Zachary says. “But it doesn’t make you look good when you’ve hooked up with all my friends by the end of fall semester.” In other words: keep it classy, collegiettes!

    Related: 7 Common Myths About Your Freshman Year

    Where to meet him: Tailgates and games

    Sure, we’re all swooning over the quarterback of the football team or the captain of the ice hockey team, but what about that cute friend of a friend you meet while tailgating? Tailgates and sports games can be the best places to meet guys (the ones who aren’t sweating up their uniforms)!

    How to impress him

    If there’s one thing that guys love to talk about, it’s sports, so why not strike up a convo about the game, the teams playing, and the players on the field? Even if you know zip about the sport, take that as your opportunity to chat him up for info like Emily from the University of Mississippi did. Emily met her freshman year boyfriend through her sorority sister at a tailgating party. “Tailgating is big down here at Ole Miss,” Emily says. “But it’s funny, because coming from New England, I really didn’t know a whole lot about Southern football teams. So he tried to explain what was going on out on the field, we ended up talking for the whole game, and he asked me out. We’re still dating three years later and now, tailgating is our favorite thing to do!” If all goes well, you'll have a date for next game! And even if he’s from another nearby school and you’re rooting for opposite teams, that only brings up the opportunity for you to use this perfect betting line: “If my team wins, you’re taking me to dinner!”

    Where to meet him: Dorm halls and study lounges

    If you’re looking for guys, what better place to start than with the guy next door? Kema Christian-Taylor from Harvard University says that the common room in the dorm was always a hotspot for scoping out hotties. “I would always go down to my dorm's common room, no matter what the hour!” Kema says. “It was rarely ever empty, and def a hot spot on Friday and Saturday nights after everyone had finished partying, but didn't want to go to bed yet!”

    How to impress him

    The great thing about dorms – and especially dorm lounges – is that there is always something happening right down the hall, whether a group of your guy hallmates are watching a movie or playing a video game (in which case, you can show off your mad gaming skills at Mario Kart playing as Yoshi)! Dorms are a great way to meet, get to know, and hang out with other guys who are living in your dorm.

    Where to meet him: Classes and labs (or in-between)!

    If that broodingly handsome cutie in your chemistry class is making eyes at you across the lecture hall, spark some chemistry of your own by approaching him in class. Amelia* from the University of Michigan says that even waiting in between classes can be a perfect time to approach guys. “I would grab a quick bite to eat in between classes sometimes and random guys would come sit by me,” she says. “One time I was reading a magazine and a guy approached me and said, ‘[T]alking is more fun than that, right?’ I laughed and let him sit with me. Although it never went anywhere, I did enjoy talking to him.”

    How to impress him

    There are plenty of ways to approach a guy in class. Nab him as your lab partner, work on a group project with him, or, as Claire from Ohio State University suggests, “Ask for his notes!” Offer to study for the upcoming exam with him. While you’re at it, offer to meet him for coffee post-cram sesh or pre-lecture. As girls, we can be intimidated by asking a guy out, but being upfront and confident is always sexy. “There’s no harm in making the first move, ladies!” says Bill Feldman from Emory University.

    Where to meet him: Student clubs and off-campus activities

    You might be the shy type, or maybe you’re not into the party scene on campus. It’s still easy to meet guys thanks to student clubs, sports teams, and other extracurricular groups. Odds are that you’ll want to start writing for your college newspaper, or maybe you’ll want to try your hand at juggling – either way, there are countless different groups for you to join, and freshman year is the perfect time to do so!

    How to impress him

    Joining as many social organizations as you can is the best way to meet guys who already share the same interests as you. You’ll know that you’ll have at least one thing in common and you can impress him with your skills. Even if that first date with him doesn’t work out, you at least found a group where you can do something you enjoy (and possibly where you can meet other guys who love dancing, foreign films, or kayaking just as much as you do).

    What’s most important to keep in mind about freshman year is that as a freshman, you should experience all that the college dating scene has to offer. When there’s so much to discover about being a new collegiette on campus, serious boyfriend-hunting shouldn’t take a big priority. And if you do snag a Campus Cutie your first year, don’t be distressed if the relationship doesn’t work out. It can be limiting being tied down in a relationship, anyway, and college can be the best time in your life to live it up as a single lady!

    *Names have been changed.

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    With another fall semester here, it’s time that we take a good, hard look at ourselves (and our love lives). Whatever mistakes we made last year are in past semesters—we’ve got the chance to revamp our romances, so let’s not waste the opportunity by falling into the arms of yet another sleazy frat bro! Whether you have a nasty habit of choosing guys who were going nowhere or you were too much of a wallflower last spring, we’ve got the right advice to help you change your ways.

    1. Your Social Life Revolved Around a Guy

    It starts off innocently enough: you want to hang out with your fun, new hook-up, so you decide to spend a Saturday night with him and his friends. But then a single Saturday night becomes an entire weekend, and before you know it, you’re making plans to fit his schedule (and ditching your friends in the process).

    Why is it such a bad thing? “Most college relationships don't last forever, so when the relationship ends, you don't want to be left behind by friends who are disgruntled that you have been neglecting them when you had something ‘better’ going on,” says Kathleen Bogle, author of Hooking Up: Sex, Dating, and Relationships on Campus.

    Shira Kipnees, a senior at Franklin & Marshall College, had to change her habits when she started making sacrifices for her boyfriend of three years. “We're long-distance during the school year, so we try and Skype every night,” she explains. “However, some nights he would have something [going on] and would not be able to Skype me until right before I'd be going to bed. I'd stay up waiting for him to be done and to Skype me, sometimes sacrificing an earlier bedtime just to talk.”

    Eventually, Shira talked to her boyfriend about the issue and they settled on a “five minute” system. Right before she’s going to bed, she asks him if he’ll be able to Skype soon. If he responds, “Yes, I have five minutes left,” she stays up. If he says, “Not in the next five minutes,” she says goodnight and goes to bed.

    It’s all about compromise. By being direct and bringing up the problem like Shira did, you and your guy can figure out a way to spend time together that doesn’t make anyone feel left out or taken advantage of. If you’re long-distance, try setting a specific day and time to Skype and stick to it every week. If you’re on campus together, set aside a girls’ night each weekend—no boyfriends allowed!

    2. You Hooked up With a Guy Knowing He Didn’t Want More (& Hoping You Could Change his Mind)

    Like many collegiettes before you, you’ve probably fallen into the ever-alluring, fixer-upper hook-up trap. Here’s how the story goes:

    1. You hear of his illustrious bed-hopping reputation and vow to never be just another notch in his belt (no matter how cute he looks from across the quad).
    2. You run into each other at a party, one thing leads to another, and you discover that this boy knows how to kiss. Like, Gone with the Wind, sweep-you-off-your-feet-style kissing.
    3. You decide to make an exception.
    4. He tells you he doesn’t want a relationship, so you unwittingly agree to a FWB situation.
    5. You tell yourself that once he gets to know you better, he won’t help but falling for you.
    6. He doesn’t.

    Here’s the thing: it’s not that you aren’t the most amazing, talented, intelligent girl he’s ever been with. You probably are. But when he tells you he isn’t looking for anything serious, chances are he’s set on living the single life in college—or worse, rebounding from a rough break-up.

    Connie Chan, a recent graduate of Carnegie Mellon University, found herself in this exact situation. “I've hooked up with a guy before knowing we weren't on the same page,” she says. “As much as I enjoyed his company, I was really wasting my time waiting around for someone who couldn't give me what I wanted. He was nice enough to end things instead of stringing me along, but I wish I had done it myself—and much earlier!”

    To save yourself from this tough situation, make some hard rules and resolve to live by them. If he tells you he doesn’t want anything serious (or you hear he’s a heartbreaker), ask yourself where you want to be by the end of the semester. If you envision yourself living the single life or open to hook-ups, then by all means, give him a shot. If, however, you’d prefer to be able to snuggle up with a guy and a mug of hot chocolate come wintertime, keep looking for someone who’s interested in more than midnight booty-calls.

    3. You Hooked up With a Guy You Weren’t Really Into

    Almost everyone has a past hook-up that they would rather forget, but what if that hook-up also happened to be with someone you didn’t even want to hook up with in the first place? There are plenty of reasons not to hook up with a guy, and this is high on the list.

    “Junior year, one of my roommates pushed me to start hanging out with her guy friend, who was best friends with her boyfriend, after he expressed an interest in me to her,” recalls Amy*, a senior at Boston College. “I started going out on double dates with the guy, mostly because I wanted to make my roommate happy. However, once things got physical with [him], I immediately became uncomfortable. I realized that I had never been into the guy since the beginning, as much as I tried to convince myself otherwise, and ended things as best I could.”

    It’s a tricky spot to be in: you want to be there for your friend, but you’re just not feeling the spark. Remember that just because he’s a friend of your friend’s boyfriend doesn’t mean he deserves any preferential treatment—and definitely no undeserved kisses! If your friend is pressuring you to give him a chance, sit her down and explain that you want to find someone that makes you as happy as her boyfriend makes her, and you can tell that this guy just isn’t Mr. Right. Plus, does your friend really want to deal with the mess you’ll make when you break things off with her boyfriend’s buddy? Definitely not—so remind her of the repercussions!

    On the other hand, you might find yourself going for a guy you’re not into simply because you’re lonely, you want to be physical, or you feel left out as the only single girl in your group. (Why rom-coms make the single lady life seem like an awful thing is beyond us.) Bogle’s advice: don’t settle! “There is no upside to hooking up with someone when you don't really want to,” she says. “There are enough guys out there that you will actually be interested in, so focus on them.”

    Related: How To Handle Your Casual Hook-Up On Valentine's Day

    4. You Chased After Guys Who Were Unavailable

    We all want what we can’t have: guilt-free carbs, Carrie Bradshaw’s closet, and, of course, unavailable guys. You’d think that we would have evolved to lust after the single ones—after all, they’re much more likely to return the favor—but unfortunately, we collegiettes are constantly crushing hard on the taken ones.

    “If you only want what you can't have, you have to ask yourself why,” advises Bogle. “Are you afraid of being hurt? Do you like the thrill of trying to attain the unattainable? Does the thought of getting someone who is hard to catch boost your ego?” If this is becoming a theme in your life, she says, you need to look inward for the reason why.

    Once you figure out why you’ve been chasing taken guys, you need to try to make some changes. Don’t go to a party that you know your elusive, taken crush will attend. Instead, spend your time meeting new (single) people. Accept an invitation to hang out with people outside of your usual crowd. Even if there aren’t any guys there the first time, you never know which fantastic boys they might be friends with! Plus, the excitement and nerves of getting to know new people will take your mind off any unattainable flings.

    5. You Made an Enemy of Your Ex

    It can be hard to use good judgment when feelings get in the way—particularly when those feelings are of the “I need to dump him” variety. Whether he got on your nerves, let the spark fizzle, or played tonsil-hockey with someone else over the weekend, you knew you had to end it. The question was: how?

    Briana Morgan, a recent graduate of Georgia College, regrets the way she ended things with an ex. “I was too afraid to have ‘the talk,’” she recounts. “Instead, I avoided him whenever I could. Finally, he showed up at my dorm because he was worried about me. Then, we had the talk. I wish I'd come clean sooner instead of dragging the whole thing out. It wasn't fair to him.”

    To avoid making the same mistake twice, try to put yourself in his shoes. Would you want to be strung along, hurt and confused for weeks? Nope, and neither would he, so be honest with him.

    If you weren’t the one doing the dumping—but you dealt with the break-up badly anyway—you’ll want to take a different tactic. There’s nothing worse than running into an ex on campus who has heard you say bitter things you came to regret. And you definitely don’t want to be known as that girl who starts rumors about old boyfriends (or hooks up with their best friends immediately post-break-up).

    This fall, keep your distance from former flames. If you’re with someone and he ends things—which means he’s lost his mind, of course—think before you speak. You may not care much for his feelings in that emotional moment, but keeping in mind how any potential awkwardness could affect you in the future—like in class, at parties, or at club meetings—will help you hold back any nasty insults.

    6. You Turned Down a Guy Who “Wasn’t Your Type”

    Sometimes, it can be hard to spot a truly nice guy, but Carole Lieberman, M.D., psychiatrist and author of Bad Boys: Why We Love Them, How to Live with Them, and When to Leave Them, explains that a lot of college girls actually avoid good guys—but not on purpose. “They’re afraid to be with a good guy who wants to get close because they're afraid if they get close, the guy will hurt them or abandon them,” she says.

    Instead of giving nice guys a chance, most of us collegiettes write them off as “not our type.” We then head straight for the notorious ladies’ men, because deep down, according to Lieberman, we think there’s no risk of getting attached—or hurt. (Spoiler alert: This plan always fails. Always.) That subconscious fear might be to blame for that just-not-into-him feeling you’ve got in your gut when you come across a nice guy.

    “I went on a date with this great guy last semester, but I just felt like there wasn’t any chemistry,” recalls Jessica*, a junior at Skidmore College. “I basically put him in the friend zone. Of course, by the end of the year, I ended up wanting him. I’m giving guys a two-date minimum chance next year!”

    Give the nice guys a chance, even if they don’t seem like “your type” at first glance. Don’t force yourself to go on more than one date if you really aren’t feeling it—especially since it’ll probably turn into a notorious first date disaster—but ask yourself what it is about the guy that makes you think you don’t have chemistry. Does he seem too predictable? Too interested? If he’s coming on way too strong, keep your distance. But if it’s just that he’s more direct and friendly than the bad boys who’ve kept you guessing in the past, he deserves a shot! Use these seven foolproof ways to tell if he’s a good guy to see if he’s worth your time.

    7. You Let Your Crush Slip By

    We get it: cute boys are intimidating! They’ve got those dreamy eyes, that fresh cologne smell... it’s a wonder we don’t all start stuttering mid-conversation. If your nerves got the best of you last year, making you more of a wallflower than a flirt, now’s the time to turn things around.

    “You only live once,” Bogle reminds us. “If something doesn't work out, fine. But, you will sleep better at night if you know you gave it a shot. Don't sit on the sidelines and watch someone else steal your crush!”

    Instead, get in on the action. Don’t be afraid to make the first move. If you see your crush in class, casually ask him to remind you of your latest assignment. Then, ask how he likes the class. The conversation should flow from there!

    If you get to the point where you’re on talking terms but he isn’t making moves, he might not realize that you’re interested. Turn up the flirt factor by asking him to hang out for a one-on-one coffee on campus to get him in a dating mindset. Never underestimate the power of body language, either; putting a hand on his arm for a second after he’s told a funny joke is one of the best ways to signal that you’re open to something more.

    Don’t fall back into bad habits this semester. You may not find love on your first day, but by making these changes (and avoiding these seven love mistakes), you’ll be seven steps closer!

    *Names have been changed.

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    Growing up means experiencing a lot of new things and learning more about yourself, which often entails discovering your sexual orientation. Sometimes that can be confusing to figure out, but with all the resources we can access (thank you internet and technology), it should be an exciting time, not one to stress about. You’re already a badass college student taking on the world so discovering your sexual orientation should be more fun than worrisome. Here are a few ways and resources to help guide the process.

    1. Understand the different sexual orientations

    There are many kinds of sexual orientations. The most commonly known ones are heterosexual (people who are attracted to the opposite sex), homosexual (people who are attracted to the same sex) and bisexual (people who are attracted to both men and women). Although these are all typically the most known on a widespread level, there are actually ten different sexual orientations. Don’t let that overwhelm you though. Sex therapist and counselor, Christina Spaccavento says, “We are all unique individuals and no one person is the same, so I recommend that each person be free to define them self in a way that fits with them and their unique set of personal experiences and emotions.”

    When it comes to sexual orientation expressions she explains, “There are various terms for people’s sexual orientation such as straight, gay, lesbian, bi, queer or asexual and any of these terms may fit well for some people. But for others, these terms can be limiting. If this is the case, it can be helpful to use terminology that allows more space for exploration such 'open' or 'fluid.'”

    2. Take your time

    This discovery process is personal to you and can take as long–or as little–as you feel comfortable with. Ms. Spaccavento encourages, “Firstly, it is important to know that it is normal to have feelings of attraction to the same gender or sex. Doing some reading and research about alternative sexual orientations can be really helpful (only use trusted and reputable sources such as local community group and government sources).” This is extremely important when discovering sexual orientation because the more time and research put into the discovery, the less confusing and more confidence boosting it will be!

    Another way to make this process easier is to acknowledge your feelings and accept the way you’re feeling. Autumn Dube, a recent graduate of Emmanuel College, says, “It can be both scary and frustrating when you start to question your sexuality. One of the best things you can do is to not fight what you're feeling. It may seem easier to try to deny your emotions or tell yourself it's just a phase, but in the long run this denial does more damage than good.”

    She adds, “It's natural to question what you're feeling, but it's not healthy to stuff down your emotions. You will learn to accept yourself as time passes, and you will find incredible support along your journey, but just remember it's okay to be confused from time to time. Your feelings and sexuality are valid, whatever they may be.”

    3. Talk to someone

    One of the best things to do when you’re confused is talk to someone! Ms. Spaccavento recommends, “Making contact with local community groups that offer support and discussion groups and events can be a great way to start to meet like minded people as well as explore any feelings of confusion that may arise. And of course, if you become distressed or confused, reaching out to an experienced and trained therapist can be a safe way to begin to explore your feelings…Talking to trusted and safe friends that have alternative sexual orientations can also be really helpful and of course, getting out there either in-person or online to meet others can also be a great way to explore.” Getting to know other people in the LGBTQ+ community can be so beneficial. Some might be going through the same thing as you while some might be past that point and could pass along advice or stories of their own experiences.

    Throughout this time, the most important thing to remember is that this is completely normal. Almost everybody questions their sexuality at some point in their life and understanding those feelings is only going to make you feel even better about yourself. Self-acceptance and having patience with yourself is going to be a key part in your journey. Go forward with pride, collegiettes!

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    Silk or lace wedding dress? An intimate courthouse ceremony or the wedding of the century? These may be minor details now, but your dream wedding could say a lot about when exactly you'll be getting married.


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    It’s no secret that relationships are a lot of work—and I do mean that in the very best way possible! Relationships require oodles of effort and TLC as well as a decent balance of give and take to really make one flourish. It’s all worth it when all of that extra work results in a happy and healthy relationship on both sides!

    There are relationships, however, that lack in some of these areas, which can result in some unfortunate outcomes such as cheating or an affair. One common misconception about cheating is that it’s all physical, which isn’t necessarily true. Enter the emotional affair.

    So, what exactly is an emotional affair, and could one be affecting your relationship? We spoke to a few collegiettes to find the meaning behind an emotional affair as well as four signs you can look for that may indicate your significant other is pursuing one, or is maybe just vulnerable to one. Either way, it's important to be aware of the signs!

    1. The two of you aren’t as close as you once were

    Remember those days when you and your SO happily spent almost every waking moment together? While it is common for relationships to find their groove and settle into a routine that involves less time together, there is a difference between having needed space and actually feeling distant–especially emotionally.

    Alex Christensen, a senior at the University of Iowa, believes that this idea serves as an explanation behind the reason for an emotional affair.

    “I think the idea of an emotional affair comes from the idea that you and your significant other aren't as close as you once were,” says Alex. “A big sign of this is spending time apart that you would normally be together.” While space is a factor for most healthy relationships, there can be situations where it feels as if the two of you are spending more than enough time apart.

    The distance doesn’t just have to be physical, however. While you may have noticed that date nights have become way less frequent and your time spent together has dwindled, you’ll also want to look out for whether you and your SO have lost any closeness emotionally.

    “It doesn't even necessarily have to be with someone they could be interested in, it could just be a friend,” Alex continues. “You start to feel distant even though you're still together.”

    If you’ve noticed your SO hasn’t sought out any emotional support or attention from you in quite some time, it could be because they’ve been receiving it from someone else, or have considered reaching out to others for that emotional fulfillment. 

    2. You’ve noticed some strange and secretive technological behavior

    You brush it off at first, but as time goes on, it becomes a bit more obvious. Their social media and smartphone usage has definitely increased—and not in a good way.

    Maybe your partner has been on their phone a lot more than they usually are—especially when you’re together—and has become way more secretive about who they’ve been texting. Maybe you’ve noticed some Snapchats pop-up from a name you may not recognize, or an increase in Facebook and Twitter usage after they swore they would never use sites like those.

    “I know people who will use Twitter and Facebook DMs to stay in contact with people who they don’t want their boyfriend or girlfriend to know that they’re talking to,” says Alyssa*, a junior at Carthage College. “With passwords and all that, it’s easy enough to keep those messages hidden. A lot easier and sneakier than communicating through text.”

    Social media is a common mode of communication and sometimes the only one when it comes down to those pursuing emotional affairs. The ding of a DM, Snapchat or text from someone new can be exciting and replicate those butterfly-ish feelings that the two of you shared when you entered the “talking stage," and can be easy enough to conceal if they so wish.

    If your partner has been craving more attention and has offered no explanation for their increased smartphone usage, then there could be an unfortunate reason behind it. While increased social media usage and secretive cell phone behavior are not exclusive to an emotional affair, it does raise a few red flags. If your SO is unwilling to justify their recent behaviors to you, then they may have turned to social media to pursue the likes of an emotional affair.

    Related: Could You Be Emotionally Cheating On Your SO?


    3. Their attitude toward you has changed

    Sure, it’s normal to be in a bad mood occasionally, but now it’s starting to feel like your SO’s attitude has changed toward you completely. While pursuing an emotional relationship with someone else, your SO can begin fantasizing about all the things this new person is or does that you’re not or don’t do, and begin to criticize you for it.

    While this doesn’t sound fair in the slightest, your SO may be lashing out at you for the most random things such as your appearance or the shows you watch because they have grown to enjoy the things about the other person and have created this ideal image that you no longer fit. This emotional affair they’ve developed has made a new mold, so if you start to notice that you just aren’t measuring up to your SO’s expectations lately, there may be a deeper reason behind it.

    Of course, it isn't always so easy to tell why your SO is lashing out. Your SO could very well be lashing out at you for different reasons, such as stress with work or their family, even if those things don't necessarily have anything to do with you. You'll want to rule out any other sources of emotional stress before considering an emotional affair as the sole reason for their change in attitude toward you. 

    4. You can just feel it

    They say that you should always trust your gut feeling, and while it can be easy at times to convince yourself of something that’s not true, it’s important to approach any gut feelings when it comes to the health and wellness of your relationship with your SO.

    “I think it's hard to determine signs of this [an emotional affair], rather it's more of a feeling,” says Alex. “You can just feel when you aren't as close to someone you love.”

    This feeling is definitely a scary one, but if something just does not seem right within your relationship, you’ll probably want to communicate your feelings the best way you can to your SO. Feelings are unique to every person, but two huge indicators are if you feel detachment emotionally along with intimately. While these feelings can suggest an emotional affair, they could also just mean that the compatibility between the two of you as partners just isn't there. This is a good time to take a step back and reevaluate before making any decisions moving forward. 

    Emotional affairs are as complex as our emotions themselves, but they are definitely not something to take lightly. Emotional affairs don’t really involve any physical contact, but an emotional relationship is just as important as a physical one, so you’ll want to look out for signs that your SO is having their emotional needs met from someone else—especially if their treatment of you has took a turn for the worst because of it. While these signs are not exclusive to an emotional affair, they are very telling, so if you suspect your SO is engaging in one, then you'll want to ensure that you appropriately address the subject with your partner ASAP.

    *Name has been changed

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    Whether you were home with your SO all summer and you’re moving back to different parts of the country in the fall, or you were in a temporary LDR, transitioning back to school can feel unnatural. This new set-up is definitely going to take some adjusting, especially if this was your first summer as a couple. We talked to Jodi R.R. Smith, president and owner of Mannersmith Etiquette Consulting to help you make sense of the situation, no matter what the circumstances of your relationship are.

    If you’re moving back to the same school

    The situation

    So you and your SO were apart all summer, and although it was hard, you had gotten used to it. Now that school is starting, you’re worried that things will be awkward between you two.

    What to expect

    There are a few reasons why jumping back into your college relationship isn’t easy. “There is something so old-fashioned and romantic about a text-call-letter-only relationship,” Smith says. “When suddenly you have the option of spending actual time together, things change. You may have changed as well.”

    Three months of summer as a collegiette can change you more than you could imagine, which is part of why reuniting with your partner might feel unnatural.

    Lindy Olive, a senior at Auburn University, and her boyfriend have had to deal with this every other semester for the past year and a half; he works one semester and goes to school the next. “His job was seven hours away from our university, so it was kind of crazy,” Lindy says. “I would get used to being in a long-distance relationship with him and then the next semester we would have to readapt to being with each other all the time.” This was far from ideal, but the collegiette’s couple made it through—and so can yours.

    How to handle it

    There are plenty of simple ways for your relationship to go back to normal. “Coming back to campus, include some dates as part of reconnecting,” Smith says. “Go to dinner together, take some long walks and chat about your summers as well as your expectations for the fall.”

    Don’t overdo it, though! “Spending 24 hours a day together for the first few days is completely understandable,” Smith explains. “But then you need to focus on school and get back into your routine. Do not ignore your other friends; it is important to focus on those connections as well.”

    Based on her experience, Lindy could not agree more. You need to “set boundaries for how much you hang out,” she says.” “When my boyfriend comes back to college, we hang out 24/7 just because we are so excited to be with each other again.” But Lindy always makes sure to carve out time for her friends and family, because “you can't go to your boyfriend about everything,” she says. “Sometimes, you need your girls to help you out.”

    For the collegiette, communication was key to handling the situation. “We had to grow up a ton and learn about ourselves to make it work, Lindy says. “But it was totally worth it, because he got job experience he needed and our relationship is stronger than ever.” Bottom line: getting back into your habits as a couple won’t come instantly, but it will eventually—promise.

    If you’re going back to different schools

    The situation

    You and your SO are high school sweethearts, or maybe you got together over break. Now that the semester is about to start, you’re moving back to different schools across the country, and you’re going to miss each other like crazy!

    What to expect

    Being in an LDR is tough, especially after spending so much time together over the summer. “My ex-boyfriend and I live in the same town but go to college separately, so it was always hard going back to school after being together for the summer,” says Rachel Petty, a junior at James Madison University.

    Lindy had to get used to being with her boyfriend long-distance as well, when he went back to work every other semester. Being in an LDR means seeing each other once every few weeks or even months, communicating exclusively via text or Skype, and worrying about what the other might be doing. It can get messy, but it doesn’t have to be!

    How to handle it

    While you and your SO are home, you want to make the most of each other. Talking about being apart is probably the last thing you want to do, but it is necessary. “The key here is to have a conversation before returning to school about expectations,” Smith says. “Long-distance relationships can work if both partners are committed to keeping it going. There needs to be a frank discussion about what it means to be together.”

    For instance, if you need your partner to send you cute texts more often, or he or she is worried about you cheating, you have to bring it up—however uncomfortable it may be.

    Lindy and her boyfriend, who are going to live close to each other for good, have become seasoned experts when it comes to LDRs. “Before the semester starts, go ahead and plan a weekend or two out of the semester to see your SO,” she suggests. “You can plan your studies and hobbies around that date, so when you do get to see him/her, you can focus on having fun with each other and not school.”

    Additionally, Lindy and her boyfriend made sure to take turns traveling to see each other. “For example, in the fall semester, my boyfriend would do most of the traveling because I was overwhelmed with school,” she says. “This summer, I did all of the traveling because my job allowed me to work remotely.”

    Whatever you do, make sure to talk to your SO on a daily basis when you go back to school. “It's important to keep communicating and share what's going on in each of your lives,” Rachel says. “If you leave each other out of the loop, you'll feel less connected.”

    As for Lindy’s advice to collegiettes like her—you guessed it—”communicate as much as possible,” she says. “Although I consider our relationship strong and healthy, it was difficult to remember why I loved my boyfriend so much when he wasn't five minutes down the road to easily hang out or go eat together. The stresses of the semester allow you to easily forget about or fight with that person.”

    For Lindy, calling, texting and Skyping was essential to her relationship’s success. And as an inspiration to us all, the collegiette concludes: “Remember it's a difficult situation. You are going to fight and bicker about it. But don't let long distance be the reason to quit something so special.” We could not have said it better!

    If one of you graduated

    The situation

    You and your SO went to the same school, but one of you graduated this past spring. This might be even more difficult than going back to being long-distance, since you have grown used to being together on campus. “My boyfriend just graduated from Miami of Ohio, and we have been together since my freshman year, meaning that we saw each other regularly on campus,” says Shelby Hyde, a senior collegiette. “This summer, I was in NYC working as an intern, and he was working back home, but we have made it work, as he came to visit.”

    But with graduation comes new opportunities, job offers, volunteer trips, etc., and you two could end up on opposite sides of the country—or even the world. Unfortunately for Shelby, her boyfriend is moving to China for nine months in the fall. “He was given an amazing opportunity to work overseas, and we have decided that with the help of Skype, WhatsApp and even resorting to snail mail, that we would do our best to make it work,” she says.

    What to expect

    One of the biggest issues you might face in this situation is not being on the same page as your partner anymore. Deciding to stay together is not a light decision to make, although it can absolutely work. “After a few weeks, see how things are going,” Smith says. “Are you happy? Is your partner happy? If so, continue the relationship by keeping in contact and making plans to see each other again soon. If not, it might be time to take a break.”

    But even if you do decide to break up, it could be temporary. “Graduating from college is a major lifecycle milestone and it has challenges,” Smith says. “At this time of your lives, breaking up is not always forever. Sometimes it takes a bit of time apart to find yourselves and get settled in your careers before rekindling the campus romance.”

    Obviously, breaking up is far from being your only option. Shelby is determined to make her relationship work. “Though the 12-hour time difference will be difficult, we have endured a temporary LDR at some point during our relationship and there are definitely ways to make it work,” she says.

    How to handle it

    We’re not teaching you anything new when we say that the key to any strong relationship is to be completely honest and open with each other. “Again, communication is key,” Jodi says. “ It is perfectly acceptable to pledge your undying love for one another. In fact, this may provide a degree of comfort and security for the one who has graduated and is trying to make his/her way in the great big world.”

    Shelby knows that communication is essential, but she has also learned that “using FaceTime or Skype every day doesn't necessarily help. It is important to each maintain your own life, and plan to talk via these platforms once or twice a week to catch each other up on the exciting and sometimes mundane happenings in your lives. But discussing what works for you beforehand is definitely important, so that nothing is left up in the air.”

    Basically, you should make sure that you and your SO are on the same page before you are far away from each other. If you are both determined to stay together, then it will come somewhat naturally, i.e. you won’t feel the need to Skype twice a day to check up on what your partner is doing.

    Whatever your situation, the summer-to-school transition can be messy. But if you communicate with your SO and remember to spend time with your friends and family as well, your relationship will come out all the stronger. Have a great year, collegiettes!

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    If you’ve ever been in a long-term relationship, you know the honeymoon phase doesn’t last forever. Insta-worthy sushi dates, Friday night parties and Netflix marathons are only half of the experience. Whether you’ve been seeing your SO for three weeks or three years, chances are they’ve struggled – or will struggle – with something. College is one of the most difficult times in a person’s life, especially with additional unexpected personal struggles. A family death on top of three exams in a week may call for extra support on your part. When your SO faces a challenge they didn’t plan, there are things you can do to help them overcome it.

    1. Listen attentively

    No one should ever have to go through a tough time alone. While it’s really important for your SO to have a supportive tribe of friends and family members, sometimes those people aren’t always available or willing to listen. If you want to help your SO, be their go-to person who can just sit and listen to whatever they have to say. Madison Becker, a junior at Kent State University, agrees that doing this one simple thing can make all the difference.

    “I would say not only listening is important but also showing that you’re actively paying attention,” she says. “Sometimes all people need is someone to talk to, but if the listener isn’t mentally present, it’s like talking to a wall.”

    It may be hard for you to listen to your SO’s problems when you have plenty of your own. A fight with a sibling, a late homework assignment or an unexpected breakout are the least of your problems. However, your job is to listen whenever your SO wants to rant or feels the need to cry.  

    2. Provide empathy and advice if asked

    While silence may be enough for a particular situation, your SO may seek comfort or advice in others. Kind words can do wonders. Dr. Carole Lieberman, a psychiatrist, media personality and bestselling author based in Beverly Hills, believes there are certain things you should and should not say to a struggling SO.

    “You should tell them ‘I get it. It must really hurt that (such and such) happened’ or ‘I feel bad that you’re going through such a tough time. Let me know if there’s anything I can do to help,’” she says. “You shouldn’t tell them ‘You’re such a downer and no fun to be with anymore’ or ‘Why can’t you just get over it already?’”

    Sometimes all your SO wants is comfort, not advice. Voicing your own opinion about something you don’t know much about, such as their financial situation or mental health history could possibly create a new conflict. Becker also says, “Unless your SO is asking for advice on what to do, I would avoid offering your own opinion on the situation and remind them that everything is going to be alright in the end.”

    Knowing when to stay quiet can be confusing and abiding by your SO’s wishes can be tough, but if you really care for them, you should respect their wants and needs.

    Related: What to Do If Your SO Has Anxiety or Depression 

    3. Be there for them physically

    If you ever performed in a recital or concert as a kid, you probably looked out at the audience to find your loved ones. Having someone you care about support you from the sidelines honestly means everything. The same concept applies to supporting your SO through a difficult situation. Although you shouldn’t spend your every waking hour with them, you should try to open up your schedule and spend some quality time together. If that means watching a movie together while cuddling or having a heart-to-heart conversation, do those things. If your SO wants you to attend a funeral or an appointment with them, do those things too.  

    Kaitlin Rush, a senior at the University of Scranton, made sure she was available for her boyfriend when his father passed away. “Just being there was the best I could do for him,” she says. “I was a shoulder to cry on and tried to remind him of the fun he had with his dad.”

    In long-distance relationships, physical presence can prove to be nearly impossible in some cases. You can call and facetime your SO, but it’s not going to be the same as being there next to them. You can’t hug through a phone. Jay Hurt, a relationship coach and author of The 9 Tenets of a Successful Relationship, insists that if you can manage a trip to see your SO, it’s totally worth it for the both of you.

    “There’s like an energy that we pull from each other when we’re there for each other,” he says. “I think it’s important to find a way to be there periodically – either once every six months or once a year or whatever it is. There needs to be some way to fill in those gaps when you can.”

    Making a small sacrifice to be there physically for your SO can make a huge difference.

    4. Encourage them to seek outside help if necessary

    Although it’s critical to be honest and open with your SO, there comes a point when too much emotional dependency can take a toll on both you and the relationship. A tough situation can strengthen the bond between two romantic partners if one doesn’t rely consistently on the other for heavy advice and physical presence.

    “If you start taking on all the emotional responsibility for your SO, it will be very harmful to your relationship,” Dr. Lieberman says “You will become their crutch and you will start to resent it. They will feel bad about themselves and start to resent you, too.”

    If your SO won’t talk to another trusted individual, you might want to consider sitting down with them to discuss pursuing professional help, such as a therapist. Staging an intervention and catching them off-guard is much different than clear communication. Hurt believes that communication is key to avoid a rift in the relationship.

    “You have to communicate how you feel, what the expectations are, and how you want to interact,” he says. “You have to communicate and let that person know and talk through these things or eventually you’ll pull away.  You’ll lose the relationship because you didn’t work through that issue.”

    It’s going to get really complicated if you can’t learn to advocate for both you and your SO.

    5. Give them space if they want it

    Everyone deals with negative feelings differently. If your SO is the type of person who builds walls and shuts down when they’re stressed, it may be best to leave them alone. Healing is a unique emotional process. Some yearn for constant attention while others want complete isolation. It might be hard for your SO to let you know they need space.

    Dr. Lieberman advises, “If your SO closes up during a tough time, don’t keep nagging them. Although the cause may have nothing to do with you, if you keep nagging, you’re liable to finally get them to explode with, ‘You’re what’s wrong! I don’t ever want you to see you again!’”

    You don’t want your helicopter tendencies to be the source of a new divide between you two. Your SO is already stressed and inside their head. Let them know you’re available to listen and talk whenever they’re ready, but don’t keep pressing them.

    Being there for your SO during a rough patch in their life can be both rewarding and draining. However, it’s a part of a romantic relationship that simply can’t be avoided. We all experience failure, loss and disappointment. Having the support of not only your friends and family but also your SO can expedite the process of conquering whatever stands in your way. A relationship is a two-way street.  Hopefully by helping your struggling SO now, they’ll return the favor in the future.  

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    I see a couple of different versions of my life.

    In one, I'm in a city. I wear high heels with red soles and drink black coffee and hail cabs on my way to the office. I have a glass of wine in my loft apartment every night and I might have a cat but I’m not sure yet.

    In the other, I'm with you. We live in a cozy house in the country and have two dogs and maybe a couple kids and we’re happy. It’s a version of my life that I never considered before but now I can see it every night when I close my eyes.

    See, I’ve never been much of a small town girl. Something in me just always believed I would end up in some big city with this big, fancy job, and that would be my life. I craved sexy lingerie and dimly lit restaurants. I wanted to wear heels to get groceries and get my hair blown out just because I felt like it. I wanted a city life. Now I just want you. I want a life with you.

    And so I’m not dating. I can't. Because at the end of the day it just wouldn’t be fair. Because no matter many things he did right or how hard he tired, it was never going to be enough because he was never going to be you. No one else will ever be you.

    I’m not dating because I’m not interested in where he works or what his mother’s name is or what makes his eyes light up with excitement. I don’t care what school he went to or where he spends his summer weekends. I don't care about him.

    I’m not dating because I like that other version of my life. It feels safe and warm. It feels like we’d have Christmases with our parents but we’d host Thanksgiving. It feels like our bedroom would be painted yellow and I’d wake up smiling. It feels like everything I’ve always written about but never imagined I’d actually get. I’m not dating because this life is inextricably linked to you and no matter how hard I try, I can’t unlink it.

    I see a couple different versions of my life. One is me in a city. The other is the reason I’m not dating. 

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    You still have that sun-kissed glow from summer and you’re wearing that super fabulous new dress you just bought… but did anyone else notice? Trying to catch the attention of a cute guy as the fall semester starts up can be hard—there are so many men on campus and so many places to find them! How do you find a setting that’s more intimate than a loud frat house on a crazy Friday night? Luckily, there are a ton of unconventional places to meet guys as you get into the swing of things this autumn!

    Instead of: Your Dorm Hall Common Room

    Try: Your Dorm Kitchen

    There’s a reason why the old saying “The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach” has survived! Guys (especially college guys) gravitate towards any plate of food, so why not make sure you’re the one holding it? Not only can the dorm kitchen help you avoid only meeting people (ahem, hot guys) from your hall, but it’ll also help you sharpen your cooking skills!

    Tasha Wang, a junior at Wesleyan University, used the dorm kitchen to her advantage last year. At first she was only using her cooking as a way to eat better food, but she soon found that many of the people coming around the kitchen were guys—very cute guys at that! “One night, I made super delicious sugar cookies with homemade frosting,” she says. “The next thing I know, I’m surrounded by about 15 guys, all asking if they can grab a cookie or two!”

    Using food as a segue, Tasha was able to strike up more genuine conversations with some of the guys in her dorm over the course of several weeks and months. “At first they asked about my cooking, if I could cook and bake more often, stuff like that,” she says. “But eventually those conversations led to more intense discussions about other stuff, like classes and friends and feelings about being in college.”

    Tasha’s tip for collegiettes trying to use food to get to a man’s heart? “Try baking first!” Tasha says. “Though guys will eat anything from steak to salad to spoiled milk, making cookies or cupcakes is an easy way for guys to take notice. And who doesn’t have a sweet tooth of sorts?”

    Once you get a guy who loves food interested, try getting his number so you can text him the next time you cook (or when the food’s ready!). Talking about food is also a great way to keep any conversation going: what’s this guy’s favorite meal? Favorite dessert? Favorite food of all time? He shouldn’t be surprised if the next time he stops by, you’re cooking something he suggested!

    Instead of: On-Campus Events

    Try: Off-Campus Events

    Many college clubs have retreats, away games or field trips, so there’s no better place to meet a guy than when exploring a brand new place together in a smaller, more intimate group!

    Laura*, a sophomore at the Wesleyan University, met her boyfriend during a freshmen pre-orientation trip. They went kayaking with a small group of students, and she was able to get to know him better.

    “We started out as friends, but getting to know him a setting different from a college campus was a great experience,” she says. “It was fun racing him in our kayaks, walking around and talking in the wilderness and just sort of being away from the fast pace of normal life, especially since I knew starting college was going to be nuts.”

    Laura feels like she got to know him better than she would at school. “Freshman year can be especially overwhelming,” she says. “Everyone’s running around all the time, not knowing where to go, and it’s easy to completely forget who everyone is. By taking time to know John on that personal level before getting to school, we were able to grow even more once we were there.”

    Off-campus events are relatively easy to sign up for; many groups on campus have something going on, so keep your eyes peeled and ask around! If not, create an off-campus event yourself. Talk with administrators, professors and other students about your college’s regulations for putting on an off-campus event. Even if you don’t connect with a potential partner, it’ll still be a great way to bond with other students!

    Instead of: Tailgates

    Try: Conferences or Panels

    Many schools host a variety of conferences or panels for students about everything from social justice to academic rights to vegan food on college campuses. The nice thing about these events is that the people who care about the issues the most attend them, and this includes extremely passionate guys!

    Marley*, a junior at the University of Texas, was sick of trying to meet guys at random pregames and tailgates. “I’m not a huge fan of the drunken party scene, especially the one that surrounds sports school culture,” she says. “It is so hard to really talk to anyone at those things. Everyone is wasted, guys are belligerent and you really can’t have any sort of conversation with anyone after the alcohol starts flowing.”

    A couple months into her sophomore year, Marley attended a conference about women’s rights and ended up sitting next to a gorgeous blonde boy. “We listened to a speaker discuss sexual assault on college campuses,” she says. “But during a break right after the session, this guy and I started having a pretty awesome discussion about what we could do help women feel more secure in how universities handle sexual assaults.”

    Overall, she felt it was a great conversation to have. “I got to meet someone whom I could talk to—sober, no less—about things I really cared about,” she says. “It was a small, relaxed setting (only about 20 people were in our session), so I was able to get to know him better than I would have during more traditional college events.”

    The nice thing about smaller conferences and panels is that it’s easy to find conversation starters. Is there a cutie catching your eye? Casually ask him what he thought of the speaker(s). If he really liked the presentation, ask him if he’s involved with that particular cause on campus or if he knows any other events like this one that you could attend (who knows? Maybe you two could go together!). If he didn’t like it, there’s still room for discussion. Why didn’t he like it? If this particular panel wasn’t his style, what kind of activities is he into? There’s a way to make the most out of any situation!

    Instead of: The Library

    Try: The Campus Bookstore

    Campus bookstores don’t typically seem like the most romantic places to meet someone (unless you’re an English major), but they can work, especially at the beginning of the semester!

    First, there are the actual books. See a cutie getting the same psychology textbook as you? Ask if he’s in your class and what he’s heard about the professor. Is he a psych major, or he just taking this class for fun? If it ends up that you are in fact taking the same course, you now have a super attractive buddy to sit next to during the upcoming lecture (always a plus!).

    Long lines in the bookstore are also a huge part of the beginning of fall semester. Hundreds of students are trying to get those last minute textbooks (and random college T-shirts) to start off the school year right. This interminable line can definitely include some nice guys. Strike up a conversation with the people standing in front of you and behind you. You’re all going to be waiting a long time for the cash register, so you might as well have some fun and meet some new people (including that adorable dude carrying a book by your favorite author!).

    Instead of: Interest Clubs

    Try: Volunteer or Community Service Organizations

    Although interest clubs are great, it’s always good to expand your horizons and flex your Good Samaritan muscle by joining a volunteer or community service organization. Not only do you get to do good for your community, but you also get to meet some great guys who are doing the same thing!

    Tasha also met several guys while volunteering with an organization that tutors elementary school kids close to Wesleyan’s campus. “It was so great seeing these guys interact with these kids,” she says. “You get to see them in a different light. And what’s cuter than a guy who’s genuine and wants to make the world a better place?”

    As with her experiences cooking in her dorm kitchen, Tasha found that the volunteer organization was a great conversation starter with all the guys she worked with. “It was a lot less intimidating than trying to talk to them at a party,” she says. “I didn’t have to yell to be heard, and I didn’t have to dress up and look pretty for them to notice me. Instead, I got to know these guys as people who care about the world around them, and that was so cool to me!”

    Though Tasha is part of several interest clubs on campus, she says that her work with the tutoring program helped her forge much stronger connections with her fellow volunteers. “I’ve actually got my eye on a boy that I met while tutoring,” she says. “I think what sealed the deal for me was watching him interact with this third grader who couldn’t understand decimals—it was great seeing him be so caring!”

    Overall, you can find college guys anywhere; it’s all about seizing the right opportunity and striking up a conversation. The smaller and more intimate the space, the easier meeting a guy will be. Branch out of your usual spots this fall—you never know what you’ll find!

    *Names have been changed.

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    The star of some team, the person always making everyone laugh, the dancer at the party—the guy everyone loves. Our favorite movie star characters have convinced us this is someone who would make the ideal boyfriend – they always do seem to fall in love at the end! Maybe you’re someone who scored a shot with one of these stereotypically-perfect guys, or maybe you haven't experienced this kind of guy because you’re just straight up intimidated by their loud, confident nature.

    Guys like this aren’t your only chance to have a movie-like, Insta-worthy, but, most importantly, real relationship. The guy minding his business in the corner of the party could rock your world. He may come off as uninterested or maybe even pretentious, but he's just not as assertive and straightforward as the clichéd movie star “dream guy.” Here are some reasons you should give the shy guy a chance. 

    Related: 7 Ways to Stop Falling for the Same Type of Guy

    1. You will know him best

    There is nothing more annoying than feeling like someone else knows your significant other better than you, or has a closer relationship with them. This will most likely be the least of your worries if you’re with a shy guy, since they don’t open up to just anyone. 

    Adam LoDolce, founder of, aims to help the 21st century woman create a love life she, well, loves. “Usually introverts are deeper thinkers,” he says, “and can connect on a much more emotional level once you get to know them.” The most exciting part about a relationship is getting to know the person more intimately; if he’s the outspoken, open-book type...there may not be much to learn. A relationship with a shy guy is more exclusive.

    2. He’s a listener

    You know those viral social media posts where girls upload a screenshot of a text that reads “this reminded me of you,” with an attached picture? The ones we all gush over and say is #relationshipgoals? Yup—expect this from your shy boo. Since he is a quiet guy, he will be especially attentive to what you’re saying. This leads to him remembering the little things, and sending you a text saying a certain thing reminded him of you, something you so subtly mentioned and are shocked and heart-eyed over the fact that he remembered.

    3. He will be all about you

    Now, an under-confident guy isn't necessarily desirable, but neither is an overly confident one, given that you may not be the primary receiver of their attention. 

    Jessica Morley, who attends USW in the UK, recalls dating one of those "bad boy, confident, look-at-me" guys, and looks back on it thinking, "they are hard work and make you feel like you're competing against each other. I love a chilled out shy guy. That’s my type.”

    After being with her “chilled out, shy guy” boyfriend for five years now, she can’t imagine going back to dating the former and this could be the case for you. Dr. Carole Lieberman, M.D., Beverly Hills psychiatrist and author, reaffirms that “a shy guy is less likely to be a ‘bad boy’ who will break your heart, compared to guys who are loud, flirtatious and think they are the coolest thing to walk the planet.”

    Finding some new girlfriend probably isn’t a worry of the overly confident fella, so he might not be as focused on building your relationship. For a guy who is naturally shy or hesitant, though, it probably is a hardship of his to successfully communicate interest and start a relationship—so if he likes you enough to do so, you can most likely count on him treating you right.

    Related: 5 Reasons Why You Shouldn't Gossip About Your Ex

    4. You probably won’t be listening to the Lemonade album.

    Of course, being all about you is synonymous with not cheating. “Not once when he was out did I worry he was being flirtatious with another girl," Kristin Trevi, a sophomore at Lynn University who has a shy boyfriend, says. "He was barely flirtatious with me in the beginning!”

    We’ve all known that kind of girl who purposely takes things out of context, who will turn a friendly encounter into a “her boyfriend was totally flirting with me.” Well, your introverted boyfriend won’t even give your frenemies this opportunity. You may think refraining from talking to girls demonstrates insecurity, but it could actually be precisely the opposite.

    “Shy does not equal immature [and] extroverted does not equal confident,” says Justin Stenstrom, life coach and author of the book Giving Shy Guys Game. If a guy is secure in himself, he will be selective, exactly the way the shy, introverted guys are.

    5. You feel comfortable.

    You know you’re close with someone when you’re able to sit in silence without it being awkward. Don’t get us wrong, though—it could definitely be awkward at first. Dr. Lieberman advises, “It’s best if the first dates with a shy guy are situations where you both don’t have to talk a lot—such as going to a movie or a concert, or going out in a group. Gradually, he will feel more comfortable and more talkative.”

    You will soon become accustomed to the shy nature of your SO though, and learn to appreciate the times where you just sit there and get to soak each other in without feeling obligated to start conversation.

    6. He’s just so cute.

    C’mon, you can’t deny how cute it is when a guy is nervous. Awkward and tongue-tied—simply irresistible! Shy guys express themselves more through actions than words, so they will always be making efforts to do cute, thoughtful gestures for you. “I had a shy boyfriend in high school who was a grade above me,” says Amelia Alexander, a sophomore at Penn State University. “When he was on his senior trip, he wasn’t telling me he missed me in between all the fun he was having. I was kinda upset. Next thing I knew, flowers appeared at my door that he arranged from all the way across the country.” After all, actions speak louder than words.

    So what now?

    Now that you’re convinced you should give the shy guy a chance, there’s only one problem: he probably won’t initiate anything. LoDolce suggests “breaking the touch barrier,” since the guy will most likely be hesitant to do so, and is also respectful.

    Don’t get us wrong—all shy guys aren’t angels. Dr. Lieberman reminds us “You should still be a little cautious, because some shy guys can turn into bad boys once you have dated them for a while, and given them the confidence to think they are too cool for you.”

    It’s never good to be too optimistic or pessimistic about any relationship or even a type of guy – everyone’s different. Treat the shy guy like any other, keeping these certain things in mind, and he could definitely rock your world.

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    The dating pool in college is already pretty small, especially on more isolated campuses, and by now, you’re probably sick of seeing Tinder taunt you about having no one new around you. It only complicates things when you don’t know which girls on campus are into girls – there’s no secret code, after all. Don’t worry, though; there are plenty of available cuties around. You’ve just already met them!

    It might seem awkward to rekindle things with girls you’ve already ended it with or to chat with an acquaintance from two years ago, but look at it this way: You get to skip the small talk. People change a lot in college, so maybe the girl who wasn’t right for you first semester is senior year’s Princess Charming.

    1. The Girl From Orientation

    Okay, so your freshman orientation was a long time ago. And yes, sometimes you cringe when you think about the people you met there whom you thought would be your BFFs but now you just awkwardly avoid in the hallways. But it wasn’t all bad – maybe it’s time to reconnect with the girl you were flirting with before college life made you way too busy. The next time you see her around, find an excuse to grab coffee and see if she’s just as great as you remember.

    2. Your Floormate From Last Year

    You've basically lived together, so by now you probably know each other pretty well. After all, sharing a bathroom gets people pretty comfortable with one another! So now that dormcest is no longer a concern, maybe it’s time to get to know each other in a different way. Grab a bite to eat and see where reminiscing leads.

    3. The “Is She or Isn’t She?” Girl

    You guys have talked and joked, but you were never quite sure if she was really into girls (and maybe she wasn’t sure if you were either). But it’s a new year, and you might just find that it’s worth a shot. Break out those snooping skills, and see if you two are destined to be more than friends!

    4. Your Former Lab Partner

    You could feel some sparks (ones that weren’t from the Bunsen burner), but you figured it was too complicated; what if you broke up and were stuck mixing chemicals together for the rest of the semester? That’s no longer a concern, and you already know each other well enough that it’s totally not weird to text her to hang out. What do you have to lose?

    5. The One Who Got Away

    It happens. You were crazy about her, but a stupid fight or a semester abroad really messed up what you had going. If she’s available, swallow your pride and see if getting back together is a good idea or if you were really destined to be a sad Taylor Swift song. The worst that can happen is you stay broken up, but if it works out, you’ll be closer than ever.

    6. The Girl You See Everywhere

    She’s president of the Pride chapter at your school. You sat near her in your writing seminar. She always seems to be ahead of you in line at Starbucks. Make the plunge and stop skirting around each other; you can’t help but notice how gorgeous she is every time you see her, and you know you have similar interests. Find an excuse to talk, whether through a mutual friend or even by saying exactly what you’re thinking—“I feel like I see you everywhere!”—and see where it takes you.

    7. The Cute Freshman

    A three- or four-year age difference used to be weird, but in college, a junior dating a freshman isn’t out of the ordinary. It might a little complicated, but it’ll be nice to see a fresh face or two around campus once the new crop of freshmen arrive. Strike up a conversation and flirt your way to a new relationship with a great girl.

    8. Last Year’s FWB

    Maybe you were too busy for a real relationship, or maybe you were just more interested in hooking up than dating, but last year, it was totally great to have FWB situation. Now, you’re looking to settle down, and you find yourself missing last year’s girl. Maybe feelings complicated things last year, but it’s time to talk about it! Put your pride aside and ask her if she’s interested in starting over.

    9. The Girl From Home

    LDRs are hard, but when you go home for vacations, it’s nice to have someone you can hang out with (especially if a lot of your high school friends have fallen by the wayside). You had a good thing going before you had to end it and leave for school, so shoot her a message and catch up. If it’s meant to be, it’ll be worth the trouble.

    Finding other ladies to date around campus can seem impossible, especially when you think you’ve met them all and the LGBTQ+ community is smaller than you’d like. If you look around, though, you’ll notice all the great girls and see the awesome relationship potential that you may have missed when you first met them. Don’t limit yourself, and definitely don’t be afraid to go out on a limb –  you might just find your perfect match!

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    It’s a new school year, which means, in all its cheesy glory, a brand spanking new you! You may not realize it yet, but those summer months of internships, relaxation and sun have matured us all—it’s better to blame it on the tan than the actual fact that we’re growing up, we’re big girls now. That being said, we’re saying goodbye to the days of promising ourselves we’ll find a boyfriend or girlfriend while stuffing our faces with Ben & Jerry’s Chocolate Fudge Brownie ice cream on the couch. This year, collegiettes’ love resolutions will be about confidence, self-respect and everything else that will rock everyone’s world…starting with our own. We’ve compiled a list of four love resolutions (and tips for putting them into action) that will make this school year the best one yet.

    1. I will confront my crush.

    “I think my new semester's love resolution is to finally have a conversation with this guy I've been crushing on. We met at a party, he seemed super into me and even asked for my number, but I get very nervous whenever I see him!” Kelsey from Boston University says.

    So you’ve been crushing on this guy or girl for, we don’t know, ever. Well, this year, it’s time to take some action. If he or she hasn’t made a move yet, then it’s your time to step up to the plate—the ball’s in your court.

    We know, easier said than done. However, in the grand scheme of life, what do you have to lose? You’re not dating, so you can’t break up. If you’re friends, confronting him or her won’t completely and totally ruin your friendship, assuming you let yourself move on. If you’re acquaintances, then you could end up as friends—and almost every great relationship starts off with that as a solid foundation.

    Dr. Ramani Durvasula, a Professor of Psychology at California State University and a relationship expert who’s been featured as one of Dr. Drew’s Lifechangers, adds that pining after someone for so long can get pretty tiring. This year, it’s time to rip the bandaid off with one quick pull. “As I see it, you may as well get in there, be yourself and see what happens,” Durvasula says. “Waiting is not likely to create change, and in the interim, someone else may snatch him or her up.”

    The absolute worst thing that can happen is he or she says no. But if that’s the case, then he or she clearly wasn’t good enough for you. After a well-deserved trip to your fave froyo joint and a Sex and the City marathon, you’ll be as good as new—and you’ll eventually have a story to laugh about with your girlfriends (not to mention a completely valid reason to seek revenge…totally kidding. Maybe.).

    “But keep in mind, even if he or she says no—you are still you," Durvasula says. "It isn’t an indictment of you. Think of the guys or girls you have said no to—it wasn’t personal, it just wasn’t a fit,”

    How To Do It?

    Like we said before, it’s a whole lot easier to imagine a perfect situation where you approach that campus cutie in your chemistry lab, ask him or her out and then ride off into the sunset together living happily ever after. But let’s get real—college isn’t exactly the set of a Disney movie (although I’m sure more than a few of us have lost a shoe after a night out…or before the clock struck midnight).

    So just how exactly do you go about creating your 21st century, fairytale-esque, I-just-hope-I-don’t-have-anything-in-my-teeth dreams a reality? While there are no foolproof scenarios you can concoct, there are ways to talk to that special guy or girl without desperately wanting to crawl under your bed and hide forever.

    Durvasula recommends approaching him or her wherever and whenever you feel most comfortable.

    “If you are at the same party, wonderful, a perfect place to approach," he says. "Time it right, catch his or her smile across the room or comment on something he or she is looking at or wearing. At the end of the day, the more times you take the initiative, the bolder you will get, and the boldness will ultimately get you to the right match for you.”


    If you see him out, go up and talk to him! Parties are all about mixing and mingling, so it’s nothing out of the ordinary to start chatting him or her up. With a little liquid courage if you’re of age (and we mean a little—we’re not trying to channel Cady Heron by throwing up on Aaron Samuels), be that confident collegiette that you know you are deep down inside. If you’re nervous at first, ask your friends to come with you, letting them know that once conversation is flowing, they can subtly and slyly walk away. So, what are good conversation starters? Class, summer, Greek life, even the breed of his or her dog—anything you’re interested in! A pretty good go-to is, "Hey, how are you? I haven’t seen you around in a while, what’s new?" But what if you guys haven’t really formally met? Well, if you have mutual friends, ask them to casually introduce you two. We're also a supporter of not-so-accidentally bumping into him or her. From there, you can apologize for your clumsy (but not alcohol-induced) trip and strike up a conversation. But just remember, this is the 21st century; there’s no need to wait for him or her to ask you for your number. Be confident and cute, and ask him or for his or her digits! You’d be surprised how sexy confidence can be.

    Just remember collegiettes, however you decide to approach him or her (aka lure him or her in), be direct! Psychotherapist Mary Waldon, LCSW says, “Ask for a date. Call it a date. No need to go on and on about your feelings and the history. Just say you like him or her and ask for a date.” Let’s be honest, you have about five minutes (read: seconds) before his or her mind wanders off. Catch his or her attention while you can!

    2. I will say goodbye to hopeless hook-ups

    “I won't go into random hook-ups with the hope that they will turn into relationships," Taylor* from University of Michigan says. "Instead, I'll indulge in a few spontaneous hook-ups, but the rest of the time take things slowly and give guys a chance to get to know me before I let them get to know me in an intimate way." 

    Random hook-ups and DFMOs—dance floor make-outs—have seemingly become staples of the college experience. But why? Does anything beneficial really come out of shoving your tongue down a stranger’s throat? While we can all agree that random hook-ups are basically pointless, a lot of collegiettes still take part in those awkwardly public, very drunk make-out sessions… usually in hopes that it will turn into something more. Although we're taking a wild guess here, we're going to assume that about 99.99 percent of these one-time hook-ups stay as just that: one-time hook-ups. However, there’s no real mystery to this one.

    “There is nothing wrong with a bit of rolling around together, unless there is a part of you in the back of your mind that hopes it will become something more,” Jeffrey Sumber, psychotherapist and adjunct professor at National-Louis University, says. “Let's be honest with ourselves first. People get turned off when they find someone who says he or she just wants to hook up but then [wants] more afterwards. Many people want the truth and get frustrated when the ‘truth’ isn't the message at the outset.”

    When it comes down to it, a fun little romp between the sheets just doesn’t establish anything but a physical connection.

    “Both sex and relationships thrive with honesty. Be honest about whichever it is you are after, relationship or sex. If it is both, then I'd recommend beginning with connection and taking it a few notches slower on the physical plane. If a guy or girl is too impatient after a few dates, then he or she is probably not the right guy or girl for you,” Sumber says.

    So come fall semester, we’re making a change. Say goodbye to constant, hopeless and empty hook-ups, and say hello to finally making a legitimate connection with that hottie at the bar.

    How To Do It?

    Fight the urge! Instead of going straight to the hook-up, try making out what he or she’s all about and getting to know him or her — show off your self-respect and confidence. By the end of the night, after an awesome conversation, you decide if it’s the right time for that special first kiss. Keeping him or her guessing all night long will definitely hold his or her attention, and who doesn’t like a little chase?


    You met a frat star last week and totally fell for him. But he only texts you when he’s drunk late at night. He’s only interested in hooking up, but you want more—you really like him. There are different ways to handle this: you can wait it out for a little and see where it goes, or play hard-to-get and say no when he calls you at 2 a.m. to come over and “hang.” In a situation like this, he’s usually only using you for a little you-know-what. If you’re looking for something more, you have to express that, otherwise things will stay just as they are, as pointless hook-ups. You don’t have to (and shouldn’t) outright say, “I want a relationship. Right now. Or else,” but you can suggest going to dinner one night or seeing a movie (outside of his Netflix account and his bedroom).

    3. I Won’t Jump Into A Relationship Too Quickly

    "I'll take my relationships day by day," Alexa from JMU says.

    This one goes hand-in-hand with number two. We all love meeting new guys or girls with the hopes of something bigger and better coming along with him or her. But at the same time, sometimes we tend to jump too soon. Here’s how it goes: you meet a nice guy or girl, you hit it off and you start picking out country clubs for the wedding reception. That is how it works, right? Surprisingly enough, not exactly (don’t worry, our minds were blown too). As it turns out, too much too soon can, and most likely will, scare any guy or girl off in a heartbeat.

    “While I’m a fan of being honest about one’s excitement and interest, [you] need to remember that [your] enthusiasm might be a bit much for someone [you] are just getting to know,” Sumber says. While Sumber doesn’t believe in following a specific set of rules when it comes to the dating scene (waiting to for him or her to call you, no double-texting, etc.), he does add that it’s best to “give yourself some space to marinate in the experience! Allow yourself to truly feel the feelings without rushing to the next interaction.”

    If you think about it from his or her perspective, wouldn’t an obsessive, stage-five clinger turn you off, especially after only meeting him or her a week ago? While this is obviously a more extreme case, it does get the point across: slow it down, and get to know him or her before you start picking out baby names.

    But while you’re off trying to play it cool, even though you’re completely and utterly gushing on the inside, don’t forget to show some interest. “People like that you are interested. In fact, most people will not pursue you unless they know in no uncertain terms that you are interested,” Sumber says. So while you’re desperately attempting to ignore him or her at a party, just give up the act and shoot him or her a smile from across the room.

    How To Do It?

    While all the voices in your head are screaming, shouting, chanting, “Text him or her! Text him or her! Text him or her!” hold yourself back. Although it’s perfectly normal (and sane) to shoot him or her a text here and there when something reminds you of him or her (‘I saw the soccer team practicing today, you guys looked great out there’ or ‘I literally waited in line at Dunkin’ Donuts for two hours today, you’re right, I definitely should invest in my own Keurig’), don’t abuse the fact that you have his or her number, sending him or her text after text after text with no reply from his or her end. If you’re looking for something more, play it cool in the beginning to see just where this thing goes.

    Waldon agrees, noting that collegiettes shouldn’t over-text or be too available. “If you have a tendency toward this type of behavior, enlist the help of a friend to help you rein it in,” she recommends. “A few basic rules of thumb: don’t text again until you receive a text back. If you tend to be an over-texter, make a pact with a friend. Either check in with the friend before you text or text your friend instead!”


    You met a girl at a party and completely and utterly fell head-over-heels—she’s literally your dream come true. Problem is, she’s still suffering (seriously, suffering) over her recent break-up with her ex-girlfriend. You figure it’s fine; she has to get over it eventually. So you text her saying you had fun hanging out and all that jazz. She responds, but nothing much comes from the conversation. What do you do next? While you can always go for the classic "I will stalk you until you decide to marry me" move, you’re probably better off letting her come to you. She’s still heartbroken, so by throwing yourself at her, you’re only bound to become her rebound. She has to make the decision to move on on her own terms. Pushing or persuading will do nothing but hurt the situation. It’s a slow process, but if you suggest grabbing coffee together when she’s ready (something light and easy), something positive can surely arise.

    4. I Will Make My Relationships Work

    “I'm going to be a freshman and I'm going to school [five] hours away from home where my boyfriend of two years is staying! So my love resolution is to keep my relationship as strong as possible without being able to see him often," Laura from University of Wisconsin says.

    Every year, collegiettes across the country vow to keep their boyfriend or girlfriend and to stay in a relationship during the school year. Whether you’re at the same school or 500+ miles apart, every relationship takes work. While it may seem easier just to call it quits, having a long-distance relationship in college is doable, especially with all the technology that surrounds us (shout-out to Facebook, Skype, texting and all that’s in between). But before deciding on anything this groundbreaking (I mean, choosing a new nail polish color takes tons of deliberation for us), make sure that this is not only something you want to do, but something that you should be doing.

    “College is an extraordinary time—time for self-discovery and the discovery of others, and a long distance relationship can often distance a person from staying in the moment at her own college and in her own college experience,” Durvasula says. However, if you’re ready and willing to make the commitment, then you can make it work.

    How To Do It?

    Communication is key. You can’t be with someone if you never speak—that’s what marriage is for (totally kidding). We all have our ridiculously busy schedules (who knew college would be more taxing than anything else we’ve done thus far?), but we do have down time. While there’s the obvious phone call, Facebook message, Tweet and email, Durvasula also recommends adding something a little more romantic (and foreign to our generation) to your relationship: snail mail. Just picture it: how absolutely melt-worthy adorable would it be if your boyfriend or girlfriend wrote you a handwritten letter? Yeah, we thought you’d agree.

    But don’t forget to make time for your college friends–they are the people you’ll be spending the next four years making fabulous mistakes with. So how do you go about this extreme balancing act (we'd like to see Gabby Douglas try this one out) and still come out with gold? It’s all about the scheduling.

    “Schedule limited Skype, FaceTime or phone time, a beginning and an end time, so you know when you will connect with your boyfriend or girlfirend, and still be able to live your life at school,” Waldon says. “Schedule time to get together, plan trips to each other’s campus and incorporate friends into at least some of that time.”


    Since he asked you to the prom your junior year, you’ve been basically glued to your boyfriend’s hip. You’ve stuck by each other through thick and thin, but now it’s time to go your separate ways—how heart-wrenching is that? But you’ve both thought long and hard, and decided that you can defy the statistics, you can overcome the stigma and you can have a long distance relationship. So you set off to your different schools to live different lives, while still holding on to what you have as a couple. You both want to have the full college experience (whatever that is) that everyone keeps talking about. So while you Skype every Monday, Facebook chat every Wednesday in class and text almost all day long, you also make sure you’re spending time with your new college friends. One weekend, you focus on your college world, only talking to your boyfriend here and there—you update him about everything on Monday. Another weekend, one of you visits the other at his or her school, absorbing each other’s own college life. You’ve figured out your own schedule and way to have a lasting relationship, and only you two can make it work after putting in what you think is the perfect amount of effort.

    So collegiettes, did we miss your love resolution for the new school year? Let us know what you’re pledging to when it comes to love this year in the comment box below!

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    We’ve all been there – the tissues, the endless rom-coms, tons of ice cream and, of course, stashing their phone when needed. Break ups are hard, but having someone by your side makes all the difference.

    As stated in the Best Friend Contract, section five subsection A, ‘in case of break up, loads of alcohol, Disney movies and ice cream are necessary.’ You’ll need a breakup survival emergency kit with the above-mentioned supplies as well as additional provisions. Those may include unflattering selfies of the ex, and daily reminders that he or she ain’t shit.

    Forget about the SO

    Think of your BFF’s ex as Voldemort—he or she shall not be named. Mentioning their name may bring back memories or feelings for your BFF. Pretending they don’t exist (or died in the battle of Hogwarts) is much more comforting than thinking about what their ex is up to now.

     “Don’t bring up her ex-SO and don’t let her fall into the trap of drunk-texting her ex,” Rachna Shah, a freshman at Dartmouth University, says. “Send her a bouquet of roses, take her out for dinner or to the mall, go to the club—just do something fun to remind her that she doesn’t need a SO to be happy!”

    Whether your BFF is fighting with her SO or they’ve broken up, friend dates are super necessary during any rough patches in relationships. Some girl time will give her a chance to say things she wouldn’t say to her SO or ex. Now, don’t try to shut your friend up if she mentions her ex either. Validating her feelings and listening to what she has to say is always important.

    Delete the old Instagram pictures

    Okay its official – your BFF is DONE with her ex. She’s certain they’re never getting back together and it’s time for phase two: deleting the evidence from social media. This step is a MUST if your BFF really wants them out of their life. It might be easier for your BFF if you’re the one to go though and delete all the pictures of them together – that way she won’t be reminded of the good times. Just don’t offer to do it without your BFF asking first, imposing your own inclinations isn’t what she needs right now.

    “It all depends on personal preference,” Jessica Morley, a student at University of South Wales, says “If it was a really emotional time, then maybe it's best to just block instead of being reminded of that person, but, if you could be strong and be the better the person I would not block them because it looks like you care and one day it will get easier, and you will see his name and not think twice.”

    Dr. Betsy Guerra, a licensed psychotherapist in Miami has helped clients from all backgrounds and types of psychological concerns, and she mainly deals with psychodynamic behaviors and cognitive-behavioral techniques. She says, “Those memories are part of your life, and even when deleted from a phone they remain in your heart. Healing comes from within. However, if you find yourself obsessing over pictures, his social media, or looking at your phone to see if he's written or called – then it may be appropriate to put boundaries on yourself by either deleting pictures or blocking him to ease your anxiet. On the other hand, keeping those pictures helps some women work on their will power by training themselves to not look at them if it’s hurtful. It can also help revive memories of why you are broken up and reassure you of the decision.”

    Every break-up is different, and even if it’s a mutual split, every person can react differently. It’s imperative to know how your friend wants to deal with her feelings so you can be there for her in the best way possible. Maybe she doesn’t want to delete the old pictures, and that’s okay! Instead, you can be there by helping her avoid slipping back into a potentially toxic relationship.

    Dust off the old dating profile

    Phase three: help her set up a dating profile. You’ll need to have a random photoshoot for your BFF so she can post the pics on Tinder, OkCupid, Bumble, etc. Instead of a bland profile description, your job as a BFF is to remind them how great they are and how they should present themselves on these sites — ‘I’m a boss ass Virgo with great tits and aspirations.’ That is of course, if your friend is actually ready to open her profile.

    Dr. Guerra, however, suggests being cautious of opening a dating profile while trying to heal. “If you're ready to start dating, open the dating profile. If you're doing it to heal, beware!" she says. "All too often I see people live by the saying ‘un clavo saca a otro,’ When translated, it means ‘one nail can remove another nail,’ this refers to when you start dating someone to forget your ex, or fall in love with a new person to get over the old one. While this may feel good and end up being a blessing, it is quite possible that starting a new relationship without grieving the last one will only postpone pain and growth. We all have something to learn from breakups," she says. “Open the dating profile when you've reflected on all those questions (about the previous relationship) and are ready to choose right and engage in healthy relational interactions. Don't open it to ‘heal’. You heal by grieving and honoring the pain that losing a loved one entails.”

    Even if your friend isn’t quite ready for the dating scene, creating the profile and swiping through potential matches can help her feel better. She can start to see some of the other fish in the sea instead of only swiping through old relationship pictures.  

    Related: 7 Questions to Ask Yourself Before You Date Someone New

    The three L’s – listen. listen. LISTEN.

    Nothing is worse than using your own experiences as a comparison to help someone else feel better. No, the one time your cat died does not compare to my great-grandma passing away. The same thing goes with breakups. A break-up from a two-month relationship is going to be totally different than one from a long-term relationship.

    Lola George, a junior from University of North Texas, says, “Understand when your friend needs support versus advice. Sometimes they just want a listening ear and comfort or positivity, and sometimes they truly need advice for moving on or coping,” she says. “It's important to be empathic and understand the proper time to comfort versus advice. Giving advice when they need comfort seems insensitive or like you're trying to ‘fix’ things, while only giving comfort when your friend needs advice will leave them complacent and slows down the process of recovering.”

    Lola has a good point – sometimes your friend doesn’t need you to try to fix things. Instead, all she needs is a good ear and a shoulder to cry on. Giving advice can come across as something negative, almost as if you’re telling them ‘you messed up, here’s how you can fix it.’

    Dr. Guerra also emphasizes the difference between advice and support. “When you give advice, you should be open to the other person deciding whether or not she wants to take it in and implement it. Support, however, is unconditional,” she says. “You are there for the person whether she agrees with your perspective or not. Your support is shaped by the recipient's needs, not your very own.”

    Chances are, your friend already knows her ex is garbage. Repeatedly telling her will probably make her feel worse. Letting her vent about all the bad things her ex put her through will give her a self-realization that she deserves better. In these cases, silence is golden.

    Related: 5 Things You Should Feel Comfortable Telling Your Best Friend

    No matter what, you should always be there for your BFF. Whether you’re ready with a plate of cookies to emotionally binge eat or with a bottle of her favorite wine, just being there for her in her time of need is the best thing you can do. Most importantly, be patient and try your best to get her mind off it.

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  • 09/03/17--00:00: 15 Fun & Free Fall Dates
  • Classes are back in session, the leaves are about to change color and the weather is getting cooler, but don’t let the autumn chill take the sizzle out of your love life! There are tons of amazing date opportunities for the fall months that won’t break the bank. Her Campus presents 15 fun and free date ideas for fall.

    1. Make “His and Hers” scarecrows

    Making scarecrows isn’t just for farmers with a pesky bird problem, it can be a great way to show off your creativity and bond with your guy. First, raid your closets for a scarecrow wardrobe. No plaid? No problem. Any old outfit will do! Once you pick the outfits, stuff the clothes with hay, old newspapers or leaves until the scarecrows are nice and plump. Then, tie the ends of the sleeves and pant legs with rubber bands or ribbons. Stuff a plastic bag or old pillowcase with leaves for the head and don’t forget to give your scarecrow a face with markers or paint. Add an old hat or some ribbons for hair to complete the dashing duo. Some of our favorite scarecrows were the non-traditional type, like this adorable pair of on a tandem bike. Now you’ll have a perfect scarecrow couple!

    2. Bike through the fall foliage

    Hop on your bikes to enjoy the crisp autumn air, the beautiful foliage and the sound of crunchy leaves beneath your wheels. Not only is riding your bike a great source of exercise, but you’ll both feel more relaxed and at one with nature as well. Whether you bike through a local park or just around campus, you’re sure to enjoy the scenic ride on this great outdoorsy date.

    3. Go on a hayride

    Lots of farms have free apple or pumpkin picking hayrides where you just pay for the produce at the end. If you’re not looking to drop the cash for the fruit, sit back, relax and enjoy the hayride together. Afterwards, walk hand-in-hand taking a romantic stroll through the orchards and simply enjoy each other’s company.

    4. Visit a haunted house

    Face your fears and visit a free haunted house in your area. Link arms and try not to make fun of your guy if he gets more scared than you do! If you can’t find any free haunted houses in your area, consider organizing your own haunted house or volunteering as a “scarer.” Sometimes it can be more fun to be on the other end of the fright!

    5. Carve or paint pumpkins

    If you have some pumpkins, why not channel some creativity and carve or paint them? There are plenty of free designs for pumpkin carving that are available online. Click here for some great templates! And don’t forget to roast the seeds in the oven for a tasty snack!

    6. Midnight bonfire

    Use a fire pit to build a romantic bonfire. Roast marshmallows, look at the stars and enjoy each other’s company in the great outdoors. For instructions on building a bonfire, click here. If you’re stuck on campus and don’t have access to a real fire, browse YouTube for a crackling fire video and pop some s’mores in the microwave for a relaxing evening in.

    7. Monster movie marathon

    Get in the Halloween spirit by checking out Hulu’s scary movie selection and pick some frightening flicks to watch together. Horror movies give you the perfect opportunity to snuggle up close. If the bone-chilling gore becomes too much, you can always turn off the flick and let things heat up between you and your guy.

    8. Read ghost stories

    Head to your campus library and check out some creepy ghost stories. Cuddle up under a warm blanket and take turns reading the tales aloud to each other. Add candlelight for a romantic yet spooky touch! If you like your scary stories to have a modern flair, read the scary urban legends together by the glow of your laptop.

    9. Post-Thanksgiving picnic in the park

    Enjoy those Thanksgiving leftovers by planning a romantic lunch in the park with him. Pack some turkey sandwiches and pumpkin pie in a picnic basket and take along a blanket to enjoy your meal amongst the lovely foliage. You can cozy up and give thanks for the wonderful man in your life.

    10. Conjure up some treats

    Get out the flour, butter and sugar and whip up some delicious desserts. After you’re done baking some Halloween cookies or cupcakes, get creative with the frosting–things will be heating up in no time! Check out these spellbinding recipes:

    11. Visit a fall festival

    Lots of towns host free fall festivals complete with live entertainment, food and activities. Check to see if there are any fall festivals in your area. Strolling through a fair arm-in-arm with your guy will make for a great autumn date.

    12. Go trick-or-treating

    Embrace your inner child and go house-to-house with your guy to score some sweets. If he’s convinced that you’re too old for trick-or-treating, suggest going to a Halloween store or thrift shop to try on some crazy costumes. For extra fun, make it a contest to see who can find the most ridiculous costume–loser has to make dinner for the winner!

    13. Get crafty

    Scour Pinterest for some fun Halloween crafts you can make with your man. Grab some glitter, markers, construction paper and glue and get those creative juices flowing. Some of our favorite Pinterest crafts include:

    14. Volunteer together

    With Thanksgiving just around the corner, what’s a better time to do some good? Visit a local animal shelter or soup kitchen and volunteer together. You’ll both feel good about giving back to the community, and seeing your guy play with puppies or donning an apron to serve food to the needy will be enough to melt your heart.

    15. Pick your own apples (and cook up recipes)!

    What’s more synonymous with fall than the crisp smell of apples in the air? Hop in the car and visit your local orchard and make a day trip out of it. Tour the farm, sip some cider and nibble on some cider donuts (delicious)! Check out some of these other apple recipes to make together!

    What fall date ideas do you have? Let us know in a comment below!

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    It’s common knowledge that having shared interests and values is crucial in any relationship, but what happens when nighttime rolls around and one of you can’t wait to go out and hit the town, while the other is already in their PJs ready for a Netflix marathon? College campuses typically have a large party scene, but that doesn’t mean every college student wants to go to fraternity parties or drink until the early hours every weekend. If you find yourself in a relationship where you or your SO likes going out more than the other person does, don’t be discouraged! There are many ways to make the relationship successful and focus on what really matters: the quality time you spend together and what you love about each other.

    We talked to current college women, as well as Rhonda Ricardo, relationship expert and author of Cherries Over Quicksand for advice on this potentially tricky situation. Here’s what you’ll need to know:

    Learn to compromise

    Most people would say compromising with your partner is an essential part of maintaining a relationship. Doing a little of what the other person likes can go a long way in making them happy, even if it’s outside your comfort zone.

    “If one person does not want to go out it’s alright to stay home sometimes but memories are built on adventures,” Ricardo says. “Maybe the couple should find something like rock climbing, volleyball, the gym or go on a local train excursion to get out and have fun together after a long week of responsibilities and deadlines.”

    Even if you both decide on an activity together, you can always compromise by doing lunch with one another then having separate night plans.

    Accept your SO for who they are and don’t try to change them

    Don’t pressure the homebody in the relationship to go out, in the same respect the person going out shouldn’t be made to feel guilty for leaving the other alone. “My boyfriend LOVES going out with his friends and I’m more of a stay at-home-and-watch Harry Potter kind of girl,” says Kayleen Parra-Padron, a senior at Florida International University. “I’m only human; of course I get jealous but I won’t stop him from going out just because I’m a home body, it’s not fair.”

    Even if you two don’t share the same idea of a perfect weekend night, you should always focus on what you love or value in your partner by giving verbal compliments such as, “I love how much you prioritize your education” or “You’re always able to make everyone in the room feel comfortable.” Accepting them for who they are and what they love is key.

    Build, maintain and practice trust

    Trust is the foundation of any lasting relationship. Both partners should feel comfortable with the other going out without them there, knowing there will be no flirting or infidelity.

    “When there is (earned) unshakeable trust present, a valuable carefree spark is added to the relationship,” Ricardo says. “This couple will most likely have a great time with their friends while apart but will also miss each other and look forward to spoiling each other when they reunite! Time apart is healthy, keeps the relationship spicy and fun.”

    If you’re the one staying home, don’t assume if your SO doesn’t respond to a text for ten minutes it’s because they’re hitting the dance floor with a hot single. And if you’re the one going out, don’t abuse that trust by acting single just because your SO is not physically there.

    Related Link: 5 Signs He Loves You (Even if He’s Not Saying It)

    Set expectations

    “It sounds formal, but my boyfriend and I had to sit down and have an honest conversation about what we both need to be happy,” says Dartmouth sophomore Rachel. “He agreed to not post multiple snap stories with single girls, because it always made me a little worried and I promised to not get upset if he takes a while to respond to a text.” Have an honest discussion with your SO about what you’d like the next time one of you goes out solo. For example, how much you’d like to text, letting the other know when you have gotten home safely and what behavior or social media postings you both can agree are appropriate.

    Focus on your similarities

    Although your idea of a perfect Friday night may be different, it’s important to remember what made you decide to become a couple in the first place. Make spending time doing what you both love to do a priority by working out together, watching a sports game or trying a new restaurant near campus the next time you both are free.

    If you're the person who loves going out...

    If you’re the person in the relationship who loves to socialize and get wild, there are ways to make sure your partner does not feel left behind. “When the party person comes home they could bring back food, flowers or better…a fun story, as to share their adventure,” says Ricardo. “Also, significant others get extra points for letting him or her know that everyone at the party said hello! This helps make it clear there are never any secret agendas when out with friends.”

    If your partner does decide to join you one night, Ricardo suggests “holding their hand, touching their shoulder or offering to bring them a drink at times during the night. If the extrovert completely disappeared and leaves the introvert alone for disrespectful amounts of time the introvert will not want to attend parties with him or her and might see the lack of attention as uncaring or worse, an insult.”

    Let your SO know they are always invited to go out with you. If there are certain events throughout the year that you really don’t want them to miss, such as a semi-formal or friend’s birthday party, make sure you communicate that so you are not left feeling resentful that they are present.

    If you'd rather stay in...

    If you’re one who’d rather order take-out, watch a movie, attend a club meeting or just lay in bed when nighttime roles around, there are steps to make life easier for you as well. “After a busy week, I’d be so excited for a calm night in to myself,” explains Laura, a senior at Virginia Tech. “But then I would find myself checking Snapchat every five minutes to see what my boyfriend and friends were doing while out. I’ve finally learned to put my phone down and realized by staying in once I’m not going to miss the most fun night ever.” Make your decision and stick to it without any regret. Find something to do other than constantly checking your phone, such as reading a chapter in a textbook, cleaning up your room or a DIY pampering night.

    If you find yourself constantly worried about what your partner is up to when you’re not around, Ricardo suggests taking a look inward. “Accusations of cheating behaviors that are not true, not fair and foolishly destructive to the relationship are HUGE red flags. Hopefully the false-accuser cleans up their actions and realize they could lose a great person in their life if they don’t raise their own standards for cherishing their relationship before it is too late.” Don’t accuse your SO of unfaithful behavior if you have no real evidence, but also trust your own intuition if something feels off in your partner’s behavior.

    So maybe your SO wants to hit the bars on Thursday night, but you’d rather get a head start on a big project due Monday. Or you can’t wait for the weekend to roll around for your sorority mixer and your SO just wants to have a Netflix marathon for two days straight. There’s no reason a relationship can’t last with these differences if both people appreciate who their partner is and are willing to compromise a bit.

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    Let’s start with the obvious—relationships aren’t easy. Once you find someone you really like, it feels amazing to give your all to them. But what happens when you catch yourself checking out that hottie in line at the supermarket? What about old feelings resurfacing for an ex hook-up? We all have crushes, but what’s okay and what isn’t when it comes to relationships? We’ve talked to collegiettes with experience to give you the low down on whether it’s normal to have crushes while you’re in a serious relationship.

    In short: Yes!

    It’s totally normal to have crushes while in a relationship. Just because you’re devoted to someone doesn’t mean you aren’t going to find other people attractive or charismatic. As long as you’re fully committed to your SO, there shouldn’t be a problem. Ariana Annuziato, a junior at Drexel University, has been in two serious relationships, which lasted nearly two years each. “While I was in these relationships, I definitely found myself crushing on people who were not my SO at the time,” she says. “Generally, these crushes are harmless and natural. I think it’s only human nature to be flattered by a little extra attention, especially when you usually only receive it from one person over a long period of time. It’s nice to know that you still have game.” While crushing on someone is okay, you definitely don’t want to take it farther than that. Read on for what you should ask yourself when these crushes come up.

    Is it someone you already had a crush on?

    If you’ve had a long-time crush on someone and know nothing would ever happen, you shouldn’t be worried. But if you’re in a serious relationship and find yourself wanting other people in your life, that may be a red flag. “I think that in some way we will all have a crush on someone else while in a relationship and probably that crush is for someone that we knew about before being in the relationship,” says Yarilix Santos, a senior at Albizu University. “A crush for me is someone that in some way or another wasn’t meant to be with you or nothing happened,” she says. “But if you while in a relationship develop a crush or more, then it’s time to think if you are really into your SO.” She’s totally right! If you’re crushing on someone you know you’d never be with, like a “friend crush” or someone you wouldn’t actually speak to, what’s the harm? Issues start to come up if you’re imagining yourself being with someone else.

    Related: Could You Be Emotionally Cheating On Your SO?

    Are you pursuing this person?

    If you find yourself flirting with your crush and trying to spend time with them, it’s probably a bad sign. Your SO should be the person you want to be with and have there to support you. If you find yourself trying to befriend your crush, you could be entering dangerous territory. “If you are crushing on the cutie in your English class it’s no big deal so long as you only make googly eyes and then never see him/her again once the semester is over,” Ariana says. “But if you strike up a friendship with the person, you can expect there to be trouble in paradise when your SO catches on.” Ashley Ortiz, a sophomore at the University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras, agrees. “In my experience, I've had platonic crushes while in a relationship but I've never done anything since I knew they were nothing serious,” she says. “I think it's okay to eye the menu, but ‘don't order a steak, chicken or salmon if you've already ordered a filet mignon.’ That's what I always tell myself and my friends.” As long as you keep your crushing to your imagination, you shouldn’t run into trouble. If you find yourself pursuing the person, it may be time to rethink the relationship you’re in.

    Are you on the same page as your SO?

    The most important part of relationships is communication. If you’ve talked to your SO about having crushes and both acknowledge that it’s completely natural, you’ll feel a lot better and things will go smoothly. “My girlfriend and I have been together for seven years and agree it’s perfectly fine to have crushes,” says Amy*, a senior at Emerson College. “We're both completely monogamous, and we have no interest in pursuing relationships outside ours. I think it all depends on what you identify as a crush. If I think someone's attractive, physically and emotionally, I consider that a little crush—and I think they are harmless and even healthy.” Once you’re on the same page as your SO, you won’t worry when you find yourself staring at someone on the streets. If you want to bring this up casually without freaking out your SO, you could say something like, “Who’s your celebrity crush?” When they tell you, tell them yours and say something like, “Isn’t it great we can have silly crushes and still be devoted to each other?” This will allow you to see how they feel about it and get things off your chest.

    While relationships should focus on the two people in them, having crushes is inevitable. As long as you’re devoted to your SO and aren’t actively pursuing someone else, there’s no reason to feel ashamed! Just remember to be open and let your partner know if you think it’s more than a crush—that’s when dangerous territory can come up. Happy crushing, collegiettes!

    *Name has been changed 

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    Long distance relationships are really difficult and definitely aren’t for everyone. However, when you do decide to embark on that journey with your SO, it’s important to know what you’re getting into and how to do it successfully. Having productive arguments is an essential part of having a healthy relationship because it deepens the level of trust between you and your SO. Obviously you don’t want to be arguing 24/7, but just because fights are unavoidable, they don’t necessarily have to be painful.

    1. Be transparent and direct in communication

    Couples in long distance relationships often let small details slip through the cracks to avoid arguments, but this can ultimately lead to more unnecessary arguing and misunderstanding. Jay Hurt, author of The 9 Tenets of a Successful Relationship, recommends being transparent instead. “Transparency encourages a deeper level of trust,” he says. “Communication adds clarity so go to the point of over communicating. Be crystal clear on both people’s expectations and intentions and how to move forward. Communicating in this way enhances trust in each other.”

    In addition to being transparent, it is also extremely important to be direct. Dr. Ish Major, host of We TV'sMarriage Boot Camp Reality Stars, says being very clear and direct in communication is key to solving an issue.

    “The direct approach is the best and most healthy way to handle an argument in a long distance or any relationship. Communication is always the big issue in relationships, in a long-distance relationship the chances for misinformation and miscommunication is magnified times ten!”

    His method for working through an argument has three steps. “So in this case you have to do everything you can to cut down on the chances for any miscommunication. Do not wait, that only increases your chances for more false scenarios and hurt feelings that may or may not be warranted. Pick up the phone, dial the number, talk, don’t text, follow this protocol:

    1. Tell him what he did wrong
    2. Tell him how it made you feel
    3. Tell him what to do to fix it

    The end. You brought the situation some much needed clarity and now you can make an informed decision about staying in this relationship and moving forward.”

    2. Pause and figure out the underlying issue

    Sometimes it can feel like the arguments that are happening in a long distance relationship are petty and can even leave one person – or both­– feeling like they don’t know why exactly they’re fighting at all. Both Hurt and Dr. Ish say that constant petty arguments often signify a deeper issue.

    Dr. Ish explains, “When couples constantly argue about little things that tells me they have much bigger problems. If you’re taking every opportunity to find fault with the person you’re with that means you’re not very happy with them. Don’t confuse the issue. Take a step back and ask yourself this one important question: ‘What else could this mean?’ This question will honestly save every relationship you’ll ever have! Ask yourself, ‘Am I really this upset about him being late or rude or insensitive or the way he dresses or his wandering eye or is there a much bigger elephant in the room.’”

    Hurt agrees, saying, “Petty arguments are a symptom of a deeper issue. Be considerate of the other person’s feelings and what they’re going through. What’s going on with them? Try to see through the other person’s lens to better understand the situation.”

    Molly Crum, a James Madison University graduate, says “I was in a long distance relationship for two summers with my boyfriend. I recommend getting to the root of the cause of the argument. For example, are you really mad that he took an hour to text you back, or is it that you’re feeling neglected, under appreciated, need more communication, etc.”

    It might be that neither of you even know why you’re actually fighting, so you might need to take a step back to examine your true feelings.

    3. Don’t give up on each other

    Sometimes arguments lead to ending a relationship, but they don’t always have to. You made the decision to be in a long distance relationship because you love your SO and made a commitment to them. Dr. Ish suggests the three rules of engagement when arguing.

    1. One team: Realize that you’re both on the same team and want the same thing…to make each other happy. Attack the issue, not each other

    2. One topic: Only fight about one thing at a time. Couples have a tendency to bring EVERY unresolved issue from their past into every argument and nothing ever gets resolved and it’s frankly a dirty way to fight. Stay focused on the one issue and you have a much better chance of actually resolving the issue.

    3. Stay in the game: This is critical for a long distance couple because it’s easy to either get off the phone or stop texting until things ‘cool off’. But when you come back, the issue is still there; unresolved. Stay in the game long enough to reach some sort of resolution where you both feel okay about moving past it or simply agreeing to disagree for the moment.”

    Indiana University graduate Sarah McDaniel says, “From my experience, trying to resolve the problem as soon as it arises, and preferable not in texting form, is the best way to handle arguments. I spent a semester studying abroad and my then boyfriend (now fiancé) found that things went much smoother when we took the time to FaceTime or call to work it out, rather than having angry, passive aggressive texting conversations all day!”

    Always remember why you got into the relationship in the first place. You and your partner have so much love for each other and that’s not worth throwing it all away over an argument when you’re miles away. It’s okay to miss each other and be upset about it but try to think about the next time you’ll see each other and how great that will be. Stay positive and hopeful, and consistently remind each other how much you love each other. Arguments will become much easier and your relationship will thrive!

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    Whether you’ve been in one relationship or ten, you’ve probably noticed a few similarities between how you treat your SO. Or maybe you haven’t been in any and you want to understand what type of girlfriend you are. Well, wait no more! Her Campus has figured out exactly what kind of girlfriend you are based on your zodiac sign. 

    Aries: The Spontaneous Type

    If you are an Aries, it is highly likely that you are creative, adaptive and insightful. Because of this, you are probably an adventurous girlfriend. You are always ready to try new things and get creative with date nights. There is nothing that scares you in a relationship because you can easily adapt to every situation. Out of all of your friends, you are probably the one most likely to plan a spontaneous weekend getaway with your SO just to show them how much you care. To you, there is no plan that can't be changed to be made better.

    Taurus: The Forever Type

    As a Taurus woman, you are patient, reliable and extremely loving. Because of these traits, you make the perfect long-term girlfriend. When you are in a relationship, you put your whole heart and soul into it and it shows. When you make a promise, you always follow through. If you and your SO get into a fight, you make your point and then let it go. Erica Kent, a Taurus from New York University, says that she has been with her boyfriend for over three years and that it mainly has to do with the fact that "whenever we argue, we know how to let it go. I prove my point and then once it's done, it's done. There is no point in staying angry." There is no use holding grudges and to you, love is more important than winning.

    Related: 5 Things No One Tells You About Falling in Love

    Gemini: The Summer Love Type

    Gemini women are known for being flexible, passionate and versatile. Because of this, you are the fall hard and fast kind of girlfriend. When you meet someone new, you automatically understand what you are feeling and you are not shy about it. Your passion comes through in wanting to create a life with your partner, even if you just met them. You have the ability to see the potential in everyone you meet. As well, no week is ever the same with you. Whether it’s changing up your date routine or weekend adventures, everything is constantly changing, which makes you incredibly fun to be around.

    Cancer: The Always There Type

    Cancer women are, more often than not, emotional, caring and imaginative. You are the kind of girlfriend that is extremely loving and supportive—no matter what. You have the ability to feel so deeply about your partner and you are always finding new ways to show your SO just how much you truly care. If your SO is having a hard day, you automatically cancel whatever plans you had to make time to help them feel better. You are the best friend and girlfriend all in one. 

    Leo: The Big Heart, Big Personality Type

    Leo women are generous, warmhearted and confident. Leos are always the go big or go home type of girlfriend. You love to be the center of attention, but you also always make sure that your partner feels fulfilled. You are the kind of girlfriend that other couples want to go on double dates with because of your over the top personality. There is never a dull moment with you. Marina Rabinowitz, a Leo from Cornell University, says, "When Valentine's day comes around, my SO knows that I am going all out. Part of it is to show her how much I love her, but secretly I just want her to tell all her friends how great I am." Typical Leo move. 

    Virgo: The Rock Type

    Virgo women are modest, reliable and practical. You are absolutely the stable type of girlfriend because of your love of everything practical. You always think through your words before you say them, making sure you never say anything that could hurt your partner. You almost always have a stable job and are smart in your financial choices, which makes your SO comfortable. As well, you know your worth but you would never make other people feel lesser than you. 

    Related: How to Stay Independent While in a Relationship

    Libra: The Role Model Type

    Libra women are romantic, idealistic and peaceful. You are the kind of girlfriend that other girlfriends look up to. You are strong-willed and courageous, but you also never talk bad about anyone. Your SO loves how you stick with your ideals and values. You also know how to plan the perfect date night because you are great at understanding what your SO wants. Although you know what you want in life, you make sure to always take your partner's opinion into mind. 

    Scorpio: The One of a Kind Type

    Scorpio women are determined, powerful and magnetic. With this, you are the kind of girlfriend that is absolutely unforgettable. Whether it’s the amazing sex, or how intense you are, your SO is magnetically attracted to you. Your personality is strong and you push others to get to know themselves better. You treat your SO like they are the most important person in the world, every single day, while still staying true to who you are. The most famous Scorpio is Blair Waldorf and it makes complete sense as to why Chuck Bass can never get enough of her. She is strong and sexy, yet always loves with her entire heart.

    Sagittarius: The Bubbly Type

    Sagittarius women are incredibly optimistic, honest and intellectual. You are the bubbly girlfriend who makes life better when you are around. You make everyday an adventure with your SO, but you also know when it’s time to take some time for yourself. If you and your SO are having a disagreement, you always know at the end of the day, the most important thing is how much you both love each other and that no fight can change that.

    Capricorn: The Classic Type

    Capricorns are idealistic, ambitious and disciplined and that makes very traditional and classic girlfriends. You know your goals in life and through that, you inspire your SO every day. You are mature and your relationship is very serious as well. You are always looking toward the future and love to plan far in advance for trips and vacations. Hannah Jakobs, a Capricorn from the University of Florida, says that every relationship she goes into she thinks about forever right away. "I don't do it to scare my partner away, but I do it to make sure I could see a future with them. If I don't, I have to really think about what makes me attracted to this person."

    Aquarius: The Girl Next Door Type

    Aquarius women are friendly, loyal and independent. Because of this, you are the girl next door girlfriend. You know how to have fun and always make your SO feel special. People love your outgoing personality, but they know that no matter what, you are always loyal to your partner. You may be a flirt at times, but at the end of the day, you only have one love.

    Pisces: The Lover Type

    Pisces women are sensitive, selfless and compassionate. You have an old soul and appreciate the classics in every situation. Because of this, you know how to love like a queen and therefore prefer the term “lover” over girlfriend. Whether it’s finding time to lay in bed and read a book with your SO or enjoying the little moments like cooking dinner together, you live life to its fullest. You are incredibly empathetic and are always putting your SO first. You know how to love and you do it right. 

    Whether you are a Taurus or a Virgo, there is no single sign that is a "better" girlfriend than the others. Everyone is different and therefore has different experiences that no one else can relate to. Just remember to love yourself and your partner has much as you can, and you will be the best type of girlfriend you can be, regardless of what month you were born.

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    Let’s be real here: texting with someone you like can sometimes feel like you’re deciphering a code. It’s easy to get hung up on their choice of words or use of emojis (or lack thereof), and even trivial things like their punctuation. As much as the buzz of your phone and the image of their name popping up on your screen makes your heart skip a beat, it also brings up a ton of anxiety—are they interested in me? What exactly do they mean here?

    To ease your worries, we spoke with human behavior and relationship expert and author of Get Over Your Ex Now! Dr. Patrick Wanis on five texting behaviors that indicate interest. With these five pieces of info in mind, their texts will seem a lot less like code and more like a diagram to whether or not they're interested!

    1. They want to learn more about you as a person

    The initial “talking stage” that takes place before most relationships begin can be a fun, exciting time for both people to learn more about each other. The truth is, however, guys generally don’t enjoy talking too much over text while girls can be the complete opposite, says Dr. Patrick Wanis—so, if they are making that extra effort, you’ll want to take notice of it.

    "Men get very frustrated when they have to text too much, so they don't enjoy texting as much as women do,” he explains. It is quite common however that this behavior changes when you first begin talking because he may be interested in pursuing something with you—therefore, if you notice that he’s attempting to make conversation and learn more about you, that it could mean good news as far as whether he is interested in you or not.

    "If he's asking things to learn about you—if he's asking questions that tell him more about who you are, then he's interested in knowing you,” says Dr. Wanis.

    For example, are they asking you about your hobbies or the classes you’re taking this semester? Or maybe they’ve dove in a little deeper and asked you about your family or your career aspirations. Either way, it’s important to note whether they’re putting in the effort to learn more about you as a person, not only in terms of compatibility but also for the sheer generalization that guys don’t particularly enjoy conversing over text—there must be a reason why he’s sucking it up for you!

    "Guys don't like texting back and forth endlessly, so if they're doing it in the beginning [then] they're doing it with an intention, and then they're going back to what they feel more comfortable with which is texts just for the exchange of basic information such as, "Okay I'll see you at 10 o'clock," Dr. Wanis explains. So, while this type of behavior may not last forever in established relationships, the fact that he’s texting you to learn more about you now can be a major indicator of interest.

    As far as the ladies go, Dr. Wanis really emphasizes the fact that girls generally enjoy texting more than guys do, so you’ll find it much easier to fall into these types of conversations with a girl!

    2. They take interest in what you’re doing

    Sure, it’s easy to casually send a “What’s up?” type of text, but according to Dr. Wanis, if they’re interested in you, they’re not only interested in learning about you, but they also want to know what you’re up to and when you can get together.

    "Guys tend to be more direct, so if they're interested in you, they will be actually thinking of when they're going to see you,” Dr. Wanis explains. “They won't just be saying, '"Hey, what's up?"' which might be their initial way of contacting or connecting with you—they're going to go one step further and say, '"What are you doing? What are you doing now? What are you doing tomorrow? What are you doing Saturday?'"

    Since guys tend to be more direct and girls tend to be more subtle, don’t be afraid to show interest in their plans! At the end of the day, everyone appreciates direct answers, and it helps to match their interest with yours if it’s there.

    3. They respond in a timely manner

    If Dr. Wanis teaches you one thing, it’s that you should not play games. It can be common in the initial stages of talking that both people are guilty of waiting a couple hours or maybe even days (see: ghosting) to respond. This could be for reasons such as either one of you doesn’t want to come off as eager, or like you have nothing better to do. We’ll let you in on a little secret—these are huge no-nos!

    In reality, someone who is interested will respond as soon as they can and will actually want to. And if they’re busy with friends, studying or at work? They’ll let you know and provide a reasonable explanation. And in return, they’ll want to talk to someone who will respond back right away as well.

    "I teach [to] never play games. Because you're starting the relationship off with deceit. Even if it's dating, that’s just deceit,” says Dr. Wanis. “So, don't play games, don't be deceitful. If you're able to respond, respond! If you're not able to respond in that moment because you're studying or busy or working, then you write back later and say, "'Hey I got your text earlier today, this is the first chance I've had to respond.’”

    Yup, it’s as simple as that, really! If someone tries to respond to you in a timely matter, you can be confident that they’re interested; however, it is a two-way street!

    Related: 5 Things to Do If He’s Bad at Texting

    4. They’ll look for more opportunities to see you

    So, now you’ve got a groove going—you’ve been exchanging texts for a little while now, have learned more about each other and they’ve shown obvious interested in what you’re up to and what your plans are. So, what else can indicate interest?

    “If he's really interested, he then asks you out on a date,” says Dr. Wanis. “He asks to get together with you. Invites you to places. He becomes more inclusive in his texts. He tells you what he's doing, he asks what you're doing, and then he asks you out on a date."

    It’s important to note that not everyone moves at the same speed, so don’t be discouraged if the person you’re talking to hasn’t asked you out on a date within the first couple days—he easily could just not be ready yet!

    5. They’re direct (or at least expressing interest) in what they want

    Generally speaking, Dr. Wanis stresses that guys are more direct, especially with texting, while girls are more subtle. So, while it is a whole lot easier to receive a direct answer, ladies leave more delicate cues—pay attention to the small details!

    "Guys tend to be very direct and they tend to be thinking more in cause and effect, and they have an objective—the girl will be more subtle,” says Dr. Wanis. “She won't come out right and say 'I want to go out with you.' She’ll express interest in a more subtle way.”

    While it can be scary to answer a direct question, it’ll only work in your benefit to be straight-up with your answer. "Answer the bloody question! Answer it directly," Dr. Wanis says with a laugh. "Just be honest.” Both girls and guys will certainly appreciate the honesty!

    But if their questions are anything but direct? Pay attention to how he or she is expressing interest, especially from a girl. If your text exchange turns flirty, then maybe toss out a feeler or two to see how she responds. Compliments are a major sign of interest, but make sure that she’s not just being friendly!

    Dr. Wanis also notes that some people are emoji people and others are not. “I think, generally speaking, women use them much more than men do,” he says. So while emoji use does definitely depend on the person, they could be key in figuring out whether or not she’s interested. Plus, there’s no defined rule out there that says only guys can be direct. If you’re a girl talking to another girl, for example, and feel like you’re in a subtle-texting stalemate, it may be in your best interest to ask her if she likes you, especially if you’re unsure whether or not she is interested in dating girls.

    Talking to someone you’re crushing on can be quite nerve-wracking at times, especially if you want to pursue a relationship. Texting should be a fun and light way to getting to know each other, but with these little tips in mind, you can feel more confident about whether someone is expressing genuine interest in you or not. And if that’s not enough to convince you, I’ll leave you with this:

    "Remember this—when a guy really wants something, he will tear down the wall,” says Dr. Wanis. “He will climb the mountain. He will cross the river. He'll walk through the fire to get it. And that includes you. If the guys not interested he'll make no effort, and he'll come up with lots of excuses. But when he's really interested, he will make every effort. And nothing will stop him."

    While Dr. Wanis let us in on what guys are thinking, we think this can be applied to all genders—so just be confident and have fun!

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    Social media has made its mark on our generation. “Tweet” and “selfie” are officially part of the English dictionary and scrolling through your Instagram feed like it’s the morning newspaper is a part of our daily routine. This level of influence has changed the way we view certain topics, including relationships. Although you didn’t sign up for your relationship and social media to intertwine at some point, it will. No matter your level of involvement on social media, there is a dark side to all the positives that come from the good that social media can bring. Below are five different ways that social media is hurting your relationship.

    1. You create unrealistic relationship standards

    We’ve all seen the posts of girls being gifted hundreds of dollars in makeup or traveling around the world at the drop of a dime with their SO, along with the hashtag #relationshipgoals. While that may be how their SO expresses appreciation for them, there are different ways that are just as romantic in which your SO can express their appreciation for you. 

    One of the most harmful things you can do in your relationship is to compare yourself to another couple. People only show the most perfect version of themselves for social media.

    Alaina Leary, a grad student at Emerson College, personally knows that it’s unfair to compare your relationship to picture-perfect versions of others’ relationships. “Sometimes, when I see a slew of people in my age range getting engaged or married, I start to wonder, ‘Why aren't we engaged? Why haven't I proposed?’ And that reaction sets unfair standards. We're not there 24/7, and we don't know the details of these relationships. We can only judge ourselves.” So even though that couple on Instagram seems so perfectly in love, you don’t see their arguments or bad days. In reality, that relationship you idolize may be battling their own set of problems.

    Similarly, Amar Salihic, a junior at Georgia State University, thinks that his relationship, and all relationships in general, shouldn’t structure their bond off of what they see online. “The social media checklist is not the standard you should be setting,” he says. “For example, one of the social media expectations is that you should have all of your SO’s time and attention. You both should value other people and things outside of your relationship. Give each other a healthy amount of time and space to miss the other.”

    So while a cute “#relationshipgoals” post may be okay to like, don’t read too much into it or try to be like them. You and your SO are two completely different people and are allowed to love each other in ways that you both see fit.

    2. Your SO keeps you a secret online

    Whether you like it or not, we’re part of a generation that is attached to social media. Since middle school, things aren’t considered official until it’s Facebook official or more commonly now, it’s not official until a couple photo is posted on Instagram for the world to see. For every girl who’s being shown off as the world’s greatest gift by her SO on social media, there is a girl who has wondered at least once why her SO doesn’t show her off the same way. This leaves a big question: Are you justified in expecting your SO to show you off on social media?

    While you shouldn’t expect to wake up to a #WCE post every morning, Dr. Patrick Wanis, a behavior and relationship specialist, thinks it’s a definite warning sign if you can’t find a trace of yourself on your SO’s page.

    “The only exception to that would be if that person is extremely private and doesn’t post anything about any of their other relationship, specifically their relationship with friends,” he says. “If your SO never mentions you, nor post photos of you or with you, then what it says is that that person doesn’t want the world to know about the relationship. So they’re either hiding the relationship and are embarrassed by it, hiding multiple relationships, or they want the world to know that they’re single and available.”

    If your SO is active on social media, they have signed up for people to know their business. You should be a large part of their lives, therefore it should in some way be known that your SO is in a relationship if you two have agreed to be serious.

    Related: 24 Things Couples Do That Are Annoying AF

    3. You’re consumed with constantly updating your relationship

    On the other hand, we all know the couples that post something about each other every second. Not every aspect of your relationship should be posted online. Your relationship requires a bit of privacy. The world shouldn’t know every time things are rocky between you two.

    “Social media is not your therapist,” Wanis adds. “Why do you need to tell about every detail? That type of behavior leads to narcissism, egocentricity and basic selfishness … you have to look for the balance. If you’re posting all day long, when do you have time to the relationship?”

    Sharing too much, too often, leaves your business as fair game for the public to ask questions and be nosy. “I believe there is such a thing as over-sharing,” Salihic also says. “It adds too much value to social media, it puts people in your business, and it can create a sense of false validation.”

    So instead of looking for the perfect filter to compliment the hundredth photo of you and your partner kissing, pick up the phone and talk to them. Remind them why they still have all of your love and affection hundreds of photos later.

    4. You or your SO keep each other’s social media page under surveillance

    It’s completely normal to check on your SO’s page every once in a while. However, if it’s been two hours and you’re refreshing the following tab on Instagram to see if your SO liked anybody else’s photos, you should consider a career with the FBI or simply realize how problematic that behavior is.

    If you are expecting to catch your SO liking or commenting or another person’s pictures, then that clearly exemplifies the lack of trust in the relationship.

    A like here and there on his friend’s pictures shouldn’t be a problem. Your SO is entitled to have friends of whatever gender, just as you should be entitled the same. However, if they are leaving questionable comments on someone’s profile that would make people think that they are not in a relationship, there is a problem.

    “If you are jealous and see real signs of infidelity, abusive behavior, serious jealousy, or anything that sets off alarms about your SO, don't downplay it just because it's ‘only social media,’" Alaina says. “If your SO is doing something online that makes you really uncomfortable, you need to have a conversation about it and work on a compromise.”

    Creeping on social media won’t address the underlying issue of broken trust. Have an open conversation with your SO if something isn’t sitting right with you.

    5. It has become easier to be sneakier

    While Snapchat’s timer may be a blessing when sending embarrassing pictures to your friends, the app’s inability to store feed makes it easier to communicate with whoever you want, with little to no record of it. This is just one of many examples of how social media platforms make it easier to keep secrets.

    Erica*, a junior at Clayton State University, agrees that social media makes it easier, even too easy, to connect with certain people. “Overall, people are a lot bolder online than in person,” she says. “It’s easy to find attention on any social media platform. Even if you have no intention of acting on any type of emotion in person, you can message someone for a night of flirting and erase it with the click of a button. I know people in relationships that have used social media to talk to other people behind their SO’s back.”

    While not everybody uses social media for the purpose of being sneaky, it’s a possibility. Don’t expect this behavior from your partner, but check that you are not using social media for these purposes. You are the only person you can control, so make sure that you have a clear conscious.

    Social media isn’t going away anytime soon, so it’s important to incorporate it into your life properly. Be mindful of your partner and your bond whenever you’re posting, tweeting, sharing or messaging. Overall, social media itself doesn’t ruin relationships, it’s how you use different platforms that can cause problems.

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    Having a crush at age six is super cute, and it's probably over by recess. Having a crush at 20, on the other hand, is super annoying, awkward and seemingly never-ending. You meet someone new in a class, at a party or from swiping on Tinder, and you notice those familiar warning signs that tell you your worst nightmare is coming true: You’re developing a crush on this person. Having a crush is actually the worst, and here are 17 reasons why.

    1. It makes you feel like you’re in middle school all over again

    And no one wants to go back to middle school.

    2. You don’t see the crush coming until it’s too late

    You never notice it in time to stop it. One day, you think, “Yeah, I guess they’re kind of cute,” and the next day you’re fantasizing about them asking you out.  

    3. And when you finally see it coming, you try to deny that it’s even happening

    How could you have a crush on that person? You barely know them. It’s not a crush; it’s just a tiny attraction. You’re just acknowledging that they have a nice smile. And nice eyes. And a nice laugh. And a nice everything. That’s all.

    4. You can never tell if they’re flirting back or if they’re just being nice to you

    Are you even flirting with them? What if they think you’re just being nice? You’re not cut out for this life.

    5. And when you actively try to flirt with them, it comes out like this:

    A for effort, F for execution.

    6. Checking out their profile turns into you downright stalking them and looking through posts from 2011

    While praying you don’t accidentally like anything.

    7. You can actually feel yourself annoying other people with how often you talk about them

    No one else cares that they changed the part in their hair and it really frames their face nicely, so why do those words keep coming out of your mouth every time you talk to one of your friends?

    8. Your friends try to hype up your crush but just end up embarrassing you

    Yes, you saw that your crush is here. No, you don’t need each of your friends to physically point them out and push you in their direction.

    9. You lose every bit of cool whenever you’re with them

    Your crush: I love Chipotle.

    You: *blurts out* Chipotle gives me gas.

    10. To the point where interacting with them gives you an actual panic attack

    Texting someone first or saying "hi" to someone when you see them on campus shouldn’t make you this nervous, but it does. Butterflies in the stomach are a real thing when you have a crush.

    11. You’ll use any excuse to start a conversation with them or invite them somewhere

    “It’s my roommate’s cat’s birthday today. Do you want to come to his party?”

    12. And when you inevitably make a fool of yourself around them, you regret everything

    Why did I send that GIF of a talking llama at 3 a.m.?

    13. Your social media presence pretty much turns into you trying to impress your crush

    And you drive yourself crazy waiting for them to like your picture or watch your Snap story.

    14. You change your routine to try to see them more and risk turning into an actual stalker

    There’s a fine line between trying to orchestrate a few “accidental” run-ins and learning their entire schedule and showing up everywhere they go.

    15. And when you actually do run into them accidentally, you look like absolute garbage

    Of course you run into them at the grocery store when you don’t even look like a functioning human. If it was anyone else, you wouldn’t care, but how are you supposed to make them fall in love with you now?

    16. When they talk to you first, you have to try not to act too excited and usually fail epically

    I won’t respond immediately this time. I’ll wait an hour and play it cool.

    Your crush: *texts you*

    You: *responds .5 seconds later*

    17. You won’t know if they like you back unless someone finally makes a move  

    There are only two ways this ends: Either you find the courage to tell them how you feel, or you wait for them to make a move they might never make. So basically, there’s no good way out of this, and you should avoid putting yourself in this situation at all costs.

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    Whether it’s blasting country music while driving down an old dirt road or bumping and grinding at the club, good tunes set the mood for EVERYTHING. And that includes sex. Well, especially sex. With good music, you can go from not feeling it to ~really~ feeling it in a matter of seconds. Here is a list of the best 11 songs to play from foreplay to finish. And thanks to these tunes, we guarantee an eargasm isn’t the only 'gasm you’ll be getting… 

    During Foreplay

    1. “Kiss Me,” Ed Sheeran

    It really doesn’t get any more romantic than “Kiss Me” by Ed Sheeran. So grab your partner close, look into their eyes and get ready to feel all the feels.  

    2. “Sex You,” Bando Jonez

    Oh, Bando Jonez you have won our hearts (and some other things). If you don’t feel your body seriously rocking with this song, then you need to turn it up. 

    3. “Dance for You,” Beyoncé

    Oh Beyoncé, Queen of love and sex, I declare this your official anthem. 

    Related: How to Spice Up Your Sex Life in a Long-Term Relationship

    4. "Thinkin' Bout You," Frank Ocean

    Frank Ocean can do no wrong. Just move your body close to your partners and the song will do the rest. Mmm yes, please. 

    While You're Doing the Deed

    5. “Pony,” Ginuwine

    Yes, this song will make you think of Channing Tatum, so what could go wrong? 

    6. “Body Say,” Demi Lovato

    If Demi can love her body in all the right ways, then you totally can too. This is a power house song that is perfect for some self-love with your partner. 

    7. “Wicked Games,” The Weeknd

    Literally, is there anything The Weeknd can’t do? No, the answer is no. This song=sex/love/passion all in one. 

    Related: 4 Reasons Why You Should Masturbate Regularly

    8. “Use Me,” Miguel

    Two words: Yes, please. That’s all. 

    9. “Ain’t No Fun (If the Homies Can’t Have None),” Snoop Dogg ft. Nate Dogg, Warren G and Kurupt

    Regardless of what your thoughts are on some of the explicit language in this tune, it still has some great vibes. 

    The Big Finish

    10. “Dangerous” (feat. Joywave), Big Data

    Once you turn on this song, you are officially ready to finish strong. This is the home stretch—this sick beat will make you want to groove in all the right ways. 

    11. “Hands to Myself,” Selena Gomez

    And last but not least, the song none of us can help but sing along to. So yeah, maybe not the best while you are in the middle of making out but can you just imagine climaxing and screaming, “I MEAN I COULD BUT WHY WOULD I WANT TO?”? Mic drop.

    Enjoy, kids.

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    Once upon a time, Shakespeare poetically pondered, “What’s in a name?” And you know what, we thought that was a great question, but not about just any name: pet names. That’s right, we wanted to ask the not-so age-old question, “What’s in a pet name?” or maybe more accurately, “What do other collegiettes think of pet names?” So we set out to discover what college women really think about pet names by conducting an informal survey of 40 collegiettes. And what we found low-key surprised us.

    Babe and baby

    Two of the more controversial pet names are “babe” and “baby.” We found that a lot of collegiettes don’t like being called either. Mariel Tishma, a senior at Columbia College Chicago, says she understands that some people don’t like these names because of their “infantilizing undertones.” In our survey, some other collegiettes express the same feelings. But more women, it seems, are okay with babe over “baby,” mostly because “baby” can come off as demeaning, even if that wasn’t intended. More than any other pet names, “babe” and “baby” are the most widely disliked by collegiettes. So maybe go for something sweet and classic, something like…

    Darling, sweetheart and honey

    Collegiettes like these three more traditional pet names way more than “babe” and “baby.” The thing is, they generally prefer their partner to use just one of them. Some collegiettes said they find these sweeter nicknames a little too cutesy if they are called all them at different times. Overall, though, the majority of college women think these nicknames are cute.

    Related: Everything You Need to Know About ‘Love Languages’ & How They Can Improve Your Relationship

    Personalized names/Your name

    On our pet names quest, the most surprising thing we found was that a lot of women prefer to be called by their given name or by a nickname special to their particular relationship. Katia Davis, a senior at the University of Kentucky, says she prefers when her SO calls her by her name over a pet name.

    “While I do like pet names, nothing is more heartwarming to me or serious than when he called me by my name,” she says. “It just feels so intimate when he says something like ‘I love you, Katia’ opposed to ‘I love you, baby.’"

    Beyond that, though, some collegiettes’ SOs call them by a unique pet name that is sweet because it came from an inside joke or a special moment between them. Some of the most interesting pet names we found were “turtle duck,” “cabbage patch kid” and “honey bunches of oats.” When you’re in a relationship, it shouldn’t matter how different or obscure the pet name might seem, as long as it makes you happy.

    So what did we learn here? We learned that “baby” is controversial, sweet pet names, like sweets themselves, should be used in moderation and that some of the best pet names are some of the most unusual. More importantly, we’ve learned that at the end of the day, most collegiettes are not picky about what pet name(s) their SO calls them, as long as she does not consider the name or her SO’s tone when using the name offensive. Jenna Price, a sophomore at East Carolina University, said it best:

    “I [have] realized something,” she says. “I never really cared what [my past SOs] were calling me (as long as it wasn't disrespectful). I more so cared about the way they said it. It's all about the inflection in their voice. When someone you love calls you bae, you might role your eyes, but if it's the right person you'll be okay with it.

    And that, friends, is what is in a pet name. Shakespeare would be so proud (and probably a little confused by by the word “bae.” Us too, Shakespeare, us too.)