Should You Cling To Your Summer Fling?

Ah, summer.

A perfect time for laziness, fun in the sun, and too much drinking. While the effects of our binge drinking usually tend to be more bad than good (hangovers, an ongoing state of dehydration, the constant fear of what you did last night), a college student’s tendency to go crazy in the summertime can lead to something positive: the ever romanticized summer fling.

These constantly sought after but rarely achieved relationships are quite hard to come by. The perfect summer fling is casual, with no promises of a future, but remains exclusive. You have fun together, and for the most part keep your feelings shallow, with an air of care, but a lack of attachment. Unfortunately, these relationships are a bit of a fairytale, an urban myth among twenty-somethings.

One or both parties always become more involved than expected, and the once promised lack of attachment becomes an ever looming problem waiting to rear it’s ugly head at the end of the summer. Your assumption that everything will end in the fall starts to morph into a fear that you will lose the person forever.

Before you know it, you have yourself a semi-serious relationship that you desperately try to mask as the perfect summer fling all your friends are jealous of. Upon this realization, you suddenly feel the only option is to spend as much time with this person as possible, before all you have left is a good tan and a broken heart, thus aiding the encroachment of attachment.

So, it’s the end of August, and now you are in a pickle. Do you continue with the unspoken agreement that all’s well that ends well? Or do you listen to the part of you that is desperately screaming not to let this one go? Should you cling to your summer fling? When making this big decision, you should ask yourself a series of questions.

1) Is it worth it?— While you think that you have found yourself a soul mate, it is very important in this situation to make yourself step outside your fling and take a good long hard look at what you’ve got to work with.

For instance, take their flaws (let’s go with assumption that no one is perfect). Do the things that get under your skin have the potential to aggravate you more and more with everyday? Or could they eventually grow to be something that you find cute, become the things you love about your summer bed buddy?

You can always approach the problem diplomatically as well, by making a list of pros and cons. While this can seriously degrade what it is that you have together, sometimes black and white leads to clarity, making your decision crystal clear.

2) Can your relationship handle stress?— You must remember that a relationship functions much more smoothly in the summer. There are very few elements during the summer that can put strain on a fling, besides of course the looming fall semester.

Once the school year starts, the stressors will come from left and right, (classes, exams, papers, financial aid, etc.) giving your relationship a bit of a culture shock, as it is facing entirely new territory. So you must ask yourself if your bond can handle the weight.

3) What kind of students are both of you?— It is most imperative that you take into account the difference between your summer self, and your student self.

If you are one of those academics who throws yourself entirely into your work, and tends to forget that there is more to life than the third floor of the library, then it is likely that your significant other will not appreciate the lack of attention, and things will end sorely mid-semester.

If you are the opposite of that, it may turn out that your partner is one those hardcore students, and then you have yourself the same problem. If it turns out that both of you approach your school work in the same fashion (which, let’s face it, is unlikely) then you have little to worry about in that department.

In other words, if this fall you find yourself in a predicament involving the fate of your perfect summer romance, the most effective method in making your decision is to remove yourself from the relationship entirely for a second and consider whether your relationship can handle a new environment.