The Harbinger Miami Lakes Educational Center Miami Lakes, FL
Issue Date: Monday, April 01, 2013 Issue: April/May Last Update: Tuesday, May 14, 2013

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In this day in age, dating is no longer stressed. Television shows scream “sex,” “promiscuity,” and it is normal for there to be a public service announcement about birth control during commercials. It seems as if society has left serious dating behind blurring the lines of adolescent relationships and confusing us even more.

So I’m here to help “DTR.”

For those who don’t watch MTV’s Awkward, DTR stands for “defining the relationship,” something that many teens fail to do. Before you experience heartbreak or continue on with your actions take a second to figure out why you’re doing this, and if it is okay.

I’ve met many teens with so many different opinions when it comes to “defining the relationship.” For some, holding hands makes the relationship legit; a kiss definitely confirms it-- for others, those are everyday actions that mean nothing. You have to figure out what kind of person you are, and figure out what kind of person that special someone is before you DTR—or decide if you even want to.

I'd probably [DTR] because you can call your partner yours and no one else's. You feel more secure about it. I'm not even the type to want to define a relationship. I wouldn't define a relationship at this age, specifically, because I feel like at this age most of us can't commit to something serious. It's not important for us,” Vanessa Liscano, a senior at American Senior High School said.

As teenagers we are at this strange in between stage where we’re too young to really think about a permanent partner but old enough to be interested. Some teens think, “What’s the point of dating?” Well, frankly, if it’s not for good company or to indulge oneself in one’s wants, then it is to get to know yourself better and to experience different people.

“In my opinion the whole reason for a relationship is to feel as you have someone to relate to; a person that is there to listen and be there to comfort you. If you do not define the relationship for what it is you probably just have a close friend instead of a companionship because that's what everyone is looking for; compatibility,” Dariella Howard, a senior at Miami Lakes Educational Center said.

There are two people in a relationship, at least there should be. Two people mean two different views, two different perspectives, two different ideas. There has to be some sort of commonality at least at the basis of the relationship. Boundaries are needed, rules need to be clear. Two people can get hurt, and feelings aren’t meant to be toyed with.

“It isn’t right to assume that the other understands. It is not safe to assume at all. When it comes to relationships assuming is just about the best way to get into trouble—and most people try to stay away from trouble,” Jenna Casais, a high school sophomore said.

If there’s any redundancy in this post it’s one thing: to be clear. You have to know what you want, what’s considered dating, and what’s okay in your standards. If you’re not ready to be clear maybe you shouldn’t “be with” anyone, in all definitions of the phrase.

“[Dating is] so weird and oftentimes I believe that it's that in between awkward phase that might be one of the first challenges upon a relationship, from staying faithful all the way to dealing with speaking to this one person constantly without wanting to kill them,” Katherine Morales, a senior at Barbara Goleman Senior High said.

Dating isn’t easy, and in this day in age it isn’t easy to define exactly what is considered dating. Do yourself a favor, and figure out what’s your definition.


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