By David Yu, Copy Editor
The concept of teenage love is everywhere in today’s culture. From books and movies, such as John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars, to music, such as Justin Bieber’s Baby there really is no medium that hasn’t featured teenage love at least once. However, teenage love is overrated and often times outright irresponsible. The most famous example of this is Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, the ultimate story about a young couple. For the unaware, Romeo and Juliet is a tragedy about two star-crossed lovers who are unable to pursue each other due to a bitter conflict between both of their families. To cut the story short, the two end up dying for each other, despite the fact that the two had only known each other for a few days at best. Some people often draw parallels between their own relationship and Romeo and Juliet, when those two are arguably the worst possible example to use to defend their love.
Many teenagers are at a point in their lives that is critical for their development and maturity. Even their “first love” often has a large impact on their romantic partners over long periods of time. However, during this phase of life, many teenagers change quickly and in drastic ways. Lifestyles that may have been set in stone for many years are now suddenly under scrutiny and question as hormones and adolescence begins to develop. During this period, it can become a huge challenge to remain compatible with a significant other. It is unreasonable to believe that either partner will remain compatible with each other for the rest of their lives. The significant majority of these relationships will rarely ever last into marriage, in fact, less than two percent of marriages are actually formed between people who had been dating since high school.
The myth of the young star-crossed lovers has often blinded many teenagers into making irrational and occasionally illegal decisions. Puppy love, as some people have called it, can lead to many individuals doing something irresponsible, reckless even. Some may feel pressured by their significant others or by their friends to do something they don’t want to do. Others might feel obligated to change certain parts of themselves to meet the expectations of their partner. It is also very important to note that romantic relationships are new to teenagers. Many of them have no idea what they’re doing, which can often lead to mistakes that they will regret later on in life.
Young love has been around for thousands of years, and it will no doubt be around for thousands more. However, it is foolish for teenagers to think that their young love is perfect and will last until death (unless you’re Romeo and Juliet). It does however, serve as an excellent tool for maturity and growth. Young love serves as practice for more mature romance once everyone grows up and becomes an adult.