This article is far from the confessions of a Galway girl. Think of it more as a Galway girl’s advice about this small city’s dating scene and about the other categories involved with such a topic.
There are questions one must know the answers to; lessons that one needs to learn before plunging into the pool of new loves and regretful date nights that they have spent hours anticipating only to be drowned by boring one-way conversations and those visible glances at one’s phone screen to see if they can hint at the old: Oh my, look at the time, I must get going. Literally.
Questions of; is this thing we call ‘dating’ difficult? Are dating apps seen as an asset or a liability when it comes to the well-being of one’s heart when searching for love? How can one come to a healthy balance when integrating a new relationship into their life? And lastly, college is a sure way to meet new people and establish new connections quickly, but can they lead to relationships being too intense, too serious?
Galway is such a compact city, bustling with anyone and everyone, where even strangers become friends quite quickly. In this little haven, relationships blossom and new loves meet. With that statement, there leaves little room to doubt the question of the level of difficulty that there is when it comes to dating. Simple answer; dating is not difficult unless you make it difficult.
I think a lot of the difficulty stems from people having unrealistic standards when it comes to their perfect match. One’s physical appearance shouldn’t matter; at the end of the day everyone is the same with a beating heart that wants the same thing we all do; to find someone.
One should also consider not forcing themselves onto the dating scene, to let it happen naturally. Mother Nature does it so well, why not try her style and let a natural path lead your significant other straight to you.
Oh, we all love a good dating app, don’t we? Perhaps this is the part where I subtly slide in my Galway girl confession; I used to be on numerous dating apps to better my chance at finding somebody and every time I was disappointed. I was trying too hard. I put in too much effort. It was all for nothing until I stopped trying so hard. I wasn’t rushing to my phone every time it pinged, and I was rewarded handsomely with my person, the one I’m still with today over two years later.
It is up to you to decide if these apps help us or break us by the way we use them. Perhaps you don’t like the online forums and that is perfectly okay. Perhaps you prefer the in-person speed dating events or meeting someone in the coffee shop.
Lastly, there is such a thing as too serious too fast and that can have a lot of consequences especially when you’re new to a person. When you meet someone and you click perfectly, you don’t have to be talking about your wedding date and the number of children you’d like to have because it’ll scare them.
As students, you have priorities that tie you to studies, but not only that, you have a priority to learn how to be independent in a new place. You have the chance to find out who you really are.
If you have found who you are and what you would like to be then amazing, you did a good job. But if you’ve yet to find out who you are then amazing, you did a good job also.
No-one moves at everyone else’s pace; you all move at your own pace. College is a time to find out about yourself in a lot of ways and until you know yourself well enough then you should be able to take that and share it with someone else because I have heard it before, “I need to be able to be by myself and be an adult alone for a while.”
Adventure, explore, learn and thrive. You’ll know when it’s time to meet your person, but that’s one bit of advice I won’t explain about because like I said, everyone is different. You’ll know when the time comes.
Rachel Garvey is a Co-Editor for Features for Student Independent News for the year 2023/24. She works full-time, but dedicates her free time to writing and being involved in SIN. Rachel has been a contributor to SIN since 2017.