If you had the chance to hook-up with your high school or college sweetheart would you? Seems that many people are reconnecting with their love interests from high school and college via social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. Couple this with shows like “High School Reunion” where they throw a mixture of people who went to high school together on private resort to see what happens, basically to see who hooks up and who doesn’t and we have an interesting cocktail of emotions and “what if’s” whirling through the minds of the masses.
The social media phenomenon and the impact it has on maturing adults is quite interesting. Many people are connecting with people that they have not seen or heard from in over twenty years. Much of the time the people that are reconnecting with are people from high school and college that they had a romantic interest in.
I opened a FaceBook account a couple months ago and within 48 hours of it being open I was contacted by three girls whom I dated while in high school and within a week I was contacted by a number of other women whom I vaguely remember from high school who were very interested in how I was doing. After a few back and fourths with each of them I reminded myself why they were in my past and shut down my account within two weeks. I was not interested in reuniting with these women from my past; however, I could see how easy it would be to hook up with them if that is what I desired to do.
I understand the allure of reconnecting with people from our past, especially people whom we were intimately involved with in our high school/college years. It is very interesting to see how these people’s lives turned out, what roads they took and where they are today. I find it very interesting how many people seem to be reconnecting with their old romances even when one or both parties are currently in a long term relationship. Some people are getting involved with their high school sweetheart to the extent where they are breaking away from their marriages. The question is why? Why after 10, 20, 30 years would one be inclined and driven to rekindle a romance with someone they have not been with or heard from since high school or college?
What is it about those relationships that make us get all giddy and lose sight of today? I think there are a number of factors. One being that most of us hold a special place in our heart for our first love; many people romanticize what that relationship felt like and what it could have been if they stayed together. For some it may be the allure of the “one that got away”, the one they never quite got over, the one in their minds who could have been “The One” and they want to explore the possibilities.
If we dig a little deeper I believe we come up with some more in depth reasons for being attracted to someone from our high school and college years. I believe much of the attraction is not necessarily to the person we dated back then as it is to a time in our life that in many ways was much simpler than today. We have to remember that when we dated this person in high school/college we did not have the responsibilities that we have today, we did not have a mortgage to pay, a career to maintain, children to run from event to event, bills to pay, laundry to do, house to clean, etc, etc, etc. Add to the fact that we weren’t living with this person and sharing every aspect of our life and we find that the time we were dating this other person becomes very alluring.
As we dig one level deeper we may find it true that the attraction that we experience for a high school/college sweetheart is not an attraction for that person at all. We may find our attraction is not even so much for a simpler time. If we dig deep what I believe we may find is that we are attracted to our self, that being our self from another time in our journey, maybe a more authentic self who was more open to the possibilities of our journey, who believed more in love and peace, who was not yet jaded or changed by the experiences of adulthood.
As I look back at who I was in my high school and college years I was wise in many ways, even though I had much to learn and experience I had some base wisdom which if I would have trusted would have served me very well. Yet like many, I allowed myself to be influenced, bent, stapled and mutilated to a point where that teenage person I was would have no longer recognized himself.
Because of where I am at in my journey, because of the awakening that I have experienced I can honestly say that my teenage years, my high school and college romances hold no allure for me. I do not have any desire to go back and try to relive those times with the people of that time for I know that there is no going back and that what we may romanticize in our mind is not what we would find if we attempted to go back.
If you are reconnecting with your high school/college sweethearts and thinking about hooking up I highly recommend that you step back and understand the attraction and what it really means in the scope of the reality of today.
I concede that there may be a few people who reconnect with the love of their life and build a successful relationship however I believe the majority of people who travel the road of reconnecting and hooking up with sweethearts from their high school/college days will find that the illusion is much sweeter than the stark reality of daily living and that they will learn a very difficult lesson which is that which seems to be the attraction is often an illusion and what we are truly seeking is that which we are. We are ultimately attracted to our authentic being and while you may recognize it in memories of your past you can only truly find your authentic self in the present.