As A College Girl In 2019, I'd Take My Platonic Relationship Over Anything Else

As A College Girl In 2019, I'd Take My Platonic Relationship Over Anything Else

Sometimes your true love actually is just your best friend, and it can be the best.

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Platonic love. It's something that is getting rarer every day. Finding a real connection with anyone, in general, these days is getting rarer too. With the sexualization of today's society and the stereotypes of friendships and relationships, it is hard sometimes to get to know someone simply for who they are without physical attributes or attraction getting in the way.

But, I think few people realize the benefits that come from finding a true love that is completely platonic. However, some might say if you can make this kind of relationship work for you, it is even better than romance.

A user on Urban Dictionary defines platonic love as "a deep connection between two people with no sexual desire or attachment." Personally, I have experienced this connection with a very select number of my closest friends. In my opinion, platonic love goes beyond just friendship.

It is a love that is so deep and meaningful that you would pretty much do anything for that person, and you feel like they know you better than you even know yourself. Like a romantic partner, you may even get the "butterflies in your stomach" feeling when you think about them, but it is not because of sexual attraction or desire. It's just the overwhelming feeling of love you have for that person.

People will argue that platonic love isn't real; that you can't truly have that deep of a connection with someone without experiencing some kind of romantic or sexual attraction. I think this is completely false, as I've experienced it firsthand. The first person that comes to mind when I think about platonic love is my friend Travis.

To be honest, the word "friend" seems much too vague, and almost devaluing for the connection we have. We sometimes joke about being soulmates. But in reality? It's not that far off. The pool of people I've come across in my life that I've connected with on such a level is minuscule.

Travis is so much more to me than a friend, however, there has never been and never will be any kind of physical or carnal desire. Our kind of relationship is rare, but it works, and it is probably the healthiest relationship I've ever had with anyone.

Platonic love has so many benefits. First of all, you can talk about absolutely anything. This includes romantic interests. Travis and I often vent about our romantic ventures and can gush or complain about them to each other without it ever being weird. (Plus you always have someone to go crying to after a breakup.)

Secondly, you never have to worry about whether or not you are enough for your partner physically or sexually, because that aspect of attraction is eliminated completely. On that note, you never have to worry about breaking up, either. You might have fights, but if your love connection is strong enough, you will always be able to get through them. Sorry, Travis, you're stuck with me forever.

In my opinion, platonic love tends to be a more open and honest relationship than a romantic one. Both parties truly feel like they can share anything, and completely be themselves. The reason for this, I think, is because neither person feels as if they need to impress or court the other, because romantic involvement isn't even an option. You never feel like you have to "win" their affections.

There are even health benefits to maintaining a healthy platonic relationship. It has been scientifically shown to decrease health risks to have love in your life, romantic or otherwise. It can lower blood pressure, cholesterol, depression, and anxiety. Platonic love can also eliminate the stresses of being in a romantic relationship that might not be so healthy, such as one where there are thoughts of cheating or abuse.

Finally, one of the most important benefits of functioning platonic relationships is unconditional love. According to betterhelp.com, unconditional love is quite rare and not typically present in romantic relationships. It is the idea that no matter what you do, nothing will stop the person from loving you, and nothing will cause them to leave. This is the kind of love families have for each other, and the way our pets feel about us.

Travis sent me a poem the other day called "on platonic love being a real thing." It was written by Sabrina Beinam, who is a genius and a hugely inspiring poet. There are a few lines in this poem that stood out to me. One of them says, "I think about each relationship sitting at the table / how we trust each other / with our whole bodies / how that's love / now, isn't that love?"

Platonic relationships are not for everyone, but they are for me and have numerous benefits for your health and psychological well-being. I don't know where I'd be without the small group of people I share this kind of connection with.

I have been fortunate enough to find some of the best people to share my life with, without ever being romantically involved. When I do find someone I want to be with romantically someday, these people will still remain a large part of my life. They are a part of who I am, and they make me a better person. Unconditional love doesn't die, and neither will these relationships.

Now, isn't that love?

Literally, so hot RN

Literally, so hot RN

My Boyfriend Is Deaf, But He's Still A Great Listener

This is what dating my deaf boyfriend has taught me.

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I have heard countless complaints over the years resembling the statement, "My boyfriend is a terrible listener."

Women say this simply to describe how irritating it is when their boyfriends zone out as they are talking about their day or when they simply stare off into space as they try and ask whether they wanna order pizza or Chinese. They may use phrases such as "selective hearing" or compare the likeness of talking to their boyfriend to "talking to a wall."

I must say that I can relate to these women but in a much different way.

My boyfriend is deaf.

I have to say that my boyfriend's deafness has never once been a roadblock for me. If anything, it made me more interested in him. I had zero experience when it came to his deafness. I had many misconceptions of his hearing ability in the beginning. But, overall, it was something that just increased my interest in this kind-hearted, goofy guy. As I started to date this person that sometimes can't help but not listen to me, I realized that his deafness had zero effect on how much I cared for him and how well we worked together.

Unlike some other members of the deaf community, my boyfriend has two cochlear implants. Fun fact: cochlear implants are actually frowned upon throughout the deaf community a lot of times. They are said to remove the individuality that comes with the deaf community and its members. However, and I will admit I am biased, I do not agree and neither does my boyfriend. Cochlear implants assist him in living his life, but that does not mean that every deaf person needs or wants them to live theirs—which is OK. They benefit this person that is very important to me, and that is all that matters in my mind.

While all cases of deafness and implant-users are unique to the individual, my boyfriend had his first implant surgery when he was just 2-years-old. Then, his second when he was 10. I knew cochlear implants existed before I met him, but I had no idea how they worked, which was soon very apparent to myself and him.

Gabby Sheets

So, basically in the simplest terms possible, there are two magnetic receivers implanted in his skull. Then, there is the outer part that holds a circular magnet, a transmitter, and a microphone that magnetizes through his skull and to his actual implant. This, somehow, gives him the ability to hear, and to be fully honest I do not understand how they work. I probably never will. All I know is that he can hear me, which I did not know would necessarily be the case when we first met...

Gabby Sheets

When we first started going out with each other, I definitely had many misconceptions about my boyfriend's hearing, misconceptions that he will tease me about to this day. For example, I thought that I had to look directly at him whenever I spoke. My mistaken logic was that he would have to read my lips in order to understand me. False. Wrong. His implants allow him to hear exactly what I am saying the majority of the time, depending on if he actually is paying attention and how loud I am talking. He can, however, read lips though, which he has to do any time he is not wearing his implants, or like when I knock them out of his head on accident... Woops.

I also, at first, had this hilarious belief that he wouldn't be able to talk to me on the phone. I thought this even after I knew he could hear me in person with practically zero difficulties. It wasn't until he was over at my place visiting me, and I came out of my room to see that he was talking to his mom. On the phone. Because he can, perfectly well. To this day, I cannot explain why I thought he wouldn't be able to speak on the phone. It was my stupid, stupid mistake, and my boyfriend still finds my naivete when it came to his hearing oh so amusing.

All of this comes to show that I had no idea what I was getting myself into. I have confessed to my boyfriend that I was self-conscious at times, simply because I didn't understand. I was terrified to ask the wrong questions and upset him, but then I came to find out that he makes deaf jokes that make me cringe, not him. I was afraid of yanking one of his implants out of his head on accident. I have multiple times now, and it has never once been a big deal. I was self-conscious about hitting a nerve, about something that not only impairs his hearing but his life as a whole.

There was one night, at the beginning of our relationship, where we just sat asking each other questions as new couples commonly do. The question was, "What is your biggest insecurity?"

His answer was his hearing. My answer was my body.

I discovered that there are always times where he will feel insecure because he isn't able to hear like everyone else. However, I love the fact that he isn't like everyone else. I sincerely hope that he realizes that.

But no, I will never be able to truly understand what it is like to be deaf, to have this life-changing impairment, and that's OK.

What I do know is that by dating my boyfriend I have learned this—everybody is insecure about something. Some are insecure about something as superficial as their looks like I am. Then some are insecure about something that affects their entire life, such as my boyfriend with his hearing. It has occurred to me that if my boyfriend can overcome something as life-altering as his deafness then I can overcome body insecurity and many other obstacles in my life now, thanks to him.

I have never met a guy as willing to listen to me and my minuscule problems as my boyfriend. I have never experienced problems in my life as severe as his deafness, but he always makes my problems, thoughts, insecurities, etc. feel validated. He is understanding and considerate. He is reassuring and has a heart of gold, and I continue to be amazed by him each day that we spend together.

So, yes, my boyfriend is deaf, but he most definitely is not a terrible listener. Not at all.

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The 7 Best Restaurants For Valentine's Day Dates In Springfield, Missouri

No matter what you and your date are feeling, the Queen City has something for you.

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Love may be in the air, but so are the smells of some delicious restaurants. Springfield, Missouri is a place I have been lucky to call home for the past three years. And it's full of restaurants of all varieties, perfect for any Valentine—even the pickiest of eaters.

From casual dining to the finer side, Springfield has what you're looking for. By knowing some options besides Olive Garden, you can add a little variety to your dining experience and ensure a happy and romantic evening.

Take a look, build your appetite, and make your reservations early (if you can) so you can treat your date to the evening they deserve.

1. Aviary Cafe & Creperie

The Aviary Cafe is a Springfield favorite. This restaurant is open late, has a full bar, and serves sweet and savory crepes along with other traditional bistro items. The Aviary allows you to make reservations for Valentine's Day and even has a unique menu specifically for the holiday, which includes a pan-seared pork chop, pommes frites, and New York cheesecake made fresh in the bakery.

2. Flame Steakhouse

Flame is a great place to go for a more upscale and expensive Valentine's Day dinner if you're in the mood to wine and dine your date. Rated three dollar signs our of four on Yelp, this steakhouse and wine bar has everything from Alaskan King Crab legs to fresh flash-fried calamari to a dry aged 24 oz Porterhouse steak. This restaurant will no doubt be packed on Valentine's Day, so be sure to make your reservation as soon as possible.

3. Bambinos Italian Cafe

Bambinos Italian Cafe has some of the best Italian food in the Springfield area. Rated "Best Date-Night Dinner" by Missouri State University's newspaper The Standard in 2017 and Best Italian Dining in 2018 by 417 Magazine, this cafe proves it can back up that claim, too. This quaint Italian restaurant has some of the best food the city has to offer from crab cakes and pasta to tiramisu to some house pastas that are to die for. With vegan options, Bambinos is the place for everyone.

4. Druff's

If you're looking for more casual of a dining experience, look no further. Druff's is known for it's incredibly tasty and different sandwiches and soups. For Valentine's Day, though, things are getting a little spiced up at this downtown hot spot. For just $45, you and your Valentine can experience the magic of Druff's with an appetizer, some sandwiches, soups, and a dessert. Make your reservation now, because it's going to be a busy night on Valentine's Day!

5. Metropolitan Grill

On the more expensive side, Metropolitan Grill is sure to make this Valentine's Day a romantic one. If you and your date come here for your evening, be sure to dress the part that this upscale restaurant expects. From pasta to steak to surf and turf, there's plenty of food to choose from. This fine dining experience is a great way to show your Valentine just how much they mean to you.

6. Nakato Japanese Restaurant

Nakato is a Japanese steakhouse and sushi bar that will leave you and your date wanting to come back again and again. With a full bar and a hibachi grill experience like no other, you can have a great evening with food cooked just the way both you and your Valentine like it. Whether you're a sushi fanatic or experiencing it for the first time, Nakato is sure to provide a fun and interactive Valentine's Day experience.

7. Black Sheep Burgers & Shakes

Who says Valentine's Day needs to be steak and wine? Known for their fun alcoholic shakes and crazy burgers, Black Sheep is also filled with some yummy food. If fine dining isn't your style, relax this Valentine's Day with a nice decadent burger and a shake or beer. You don't have to go all out for Valentine's Day to make it a great one, and Black Sheep's burgers won't disappoint.

From burgers to steaks to grilled cheese, Springfield is known for all kinds of foods. With seemingly unending options for your Valentine's Day date, it's fair to say this list is not at all the only restaurants to consider.

The most important thing to remember is that no matter where you and your Valentine go out to eat, make your date special. With the right person, it doesn't even matter if you're eating at Steak 'N Shake or Applebee's. There's a lot of pressure to make Valentine's Day special and perfect, but as long as you think the person you're with is both of those things, you're set.

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