For many couples, this is the perspective they may have for single or “It’s complicated” types of people. But in reality, singles are somewhat jealous, fascinated and secretly yearn for such affection. Singles are stereotypically judged for being explicitly jealous and dare I say, lonely. But this is not the case for all single people. I can attest that singleness is not a curse but rather a blessing. Currently being single, I can focus on my individual growth, spend money on myself and be independent. But although singleness is great, there are moments in which I desire companionship as seen on the University of New Haven campus. 

The scene set: “SomeboDY sedATE me!” screams a young adult after they drop their phone on the ground; one friend, deadpan, replies, “good soup,” and another looks at them, fully bites their bottom lips, scrunches their eyebrows, forms a V-shape with the thumb and index finger under their chin and groans. The peers around them either don’t react or give a confirmatory nod at the situation and go on with their life. You’re flabbergasted, naturally.

In my senior year of high school, I was ensconced in solitude – not so much in an angsty “pity me” way, but rather in an “I can’t wait to get out of here” kind of way. I would purposefully push other people away to avoid making any sort of human connection. Mostly, however, I was grasping at the idea of a future where I could meet like-minded people and be able to establish real connections. The more that I went through high school, the more I realized I didn’t have those connections; I had acquaintances with whom I would share an occasional laugh – acquaintances who would sometimes refer to me as their “gay best friend.” Dynamics like these were what really deterred me from meeting people.

pt. 2007, the brisk autumn chill brought whispers of a show that was “every parent’s nightmare.” When the sun descended into obscurity, millions stepped into the lives of Manhattan’s elite. The first season of “Gossip Girl” had well-developed characters and a well-written story that you could immerse yourself in. Despite the later seasons being riddled with unintelligible plotlines and character devolvement, it was still indulgent, which made it enjoyable to watch. Even in their worst moments, the characters felt real and viewers wanted to root for them (not you, Serena Van der Woodson). It became a campy catastrophe, but it was still closely tethered to its thesis: money and privilege are what makes the world go around. 

Currently, it feels like I haven’t truly interacted with another person since before the pandemic. While I now attend classes and go to work in the morning, something still seems off; I feel a profound disconnect from those around me, and while I could pretend like this experience is unique,  I know that it’s not. Especially after so many months of social distancing, it feels as though we have forgotten how to be human. 

Those who enjoy romantic comedies revel in the comfort and familiarity of the phrase “and they all lived happily ever after.” Gazing wistfully among the happy couple on the screen incites feelings of elation and somberness, as they wish for unadulterated bliss. However, behind the image of perfection lies malice and bone-chilling horror. In the dark underbelly of romance lies an amalgamation of toxic narratives: Joe Goldberg from “YOU.”

Social media runs our lives. With its limitless networks, there are multiple methods of communicating ideas and information effortlessly. This has a transgenerational effect, as all ages are found actively on media outlets such as Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and more. With such access, one can gain access to the latest news, keep up to date on trends, follow an idol or celebrity icon and communicate with family and friends across the globe. Considering the breadth of information along with its large audience, it is safe to say social media has taken over the world.