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The online home of the Central Focus

The online home of the Central Focus

Learning to Love

Teenagers begin their adventures in the world of relationships and dating, which can be the world where you learn the most
Seniors Everett Scott and Faith Green pose together. They have been dating for over a year and have built a tight knit relationship with each other.

Seniors Everett Scott and Faith Green hold hands and scream as they zip down the hill of a roller coaster at Six Flags. They’ve been dating for a year and two months since meeting through marching band. Even though they both have a look of fear splattered across their faces as they climb the next hill, they both feel safe knowing that they are there for each other. Physically, to make each other feel safe on this terrifying roller coaster, and emotionally, knowing that their relationship is a safe space for them to be vulnerable with each other.
Some consider dating in high school a controversial topic because some high school relationships can be damaging for teens, according to senior Zane Stephens.
“There are so many ways dating in high school can be complicated and problematic. [Dating in high school] can[end up being] a big messy problem that could harm kids,” Stephens said.
Contrary to these opinions, other teenagers believe that dating in high school has many benefits. Junior Aubrey Simpson said a high school relationship can help teenagers develop emotionally.

Juniors Aubrey Simpson and Ava Drury pose together at a Taylor Swift concert over the summer.

“You get to have the experience of going through the ups-and-downs of a relationship and see what works for you and what doesn’t [in a relationship] before you mature more and move onto college,” Simpson said.
Stephens and Scott agree that being in a relationship in high school is a good option for those who may not even want to be a part of a long-term relationship.
“I think [dating is] a fun thing to explore whenever you’re in high school [even if] you don’t have the opportunity to be in a full-fledged relationship. You can [go on] cute little dates that can help introduce you to real dating. It can [also] teach you how to respect someone and respect their boundaries. [You can learn how to] make sure that they are healthy [and happy in the relationship] along with you,” Stephens said.
“Dating in high school is beneficial because you get to that age where you’re finally mature enough to make your own decisions and know what you want. Dating is a great way to explore that, even if you aren’t looking for a long-time thing,” Scott said.
Simpson agrees with Stephens that high school relationships can help prepare you for adult relationships.
“[Dating in high school] can help you figure out what you want out of a relationship and it can help you learn how to be in a relationship so you don’t make dumb mistakes [in a relationship] that could have been avoided,” Simpson said.
Scott believes that the feeling of peace and stability that come from his relationship is the best part of dating in high school.
“My favorite part about being in a relationship is all the security that you can get, I can tell her anything and she can tell me anything. Knowing that I have someone who’s with me through thick and thin is very comforting,” Scott said.

Juniors Aubrey Simpson and Ava Drury walk hand-in-hand before homecoming this year.

While some people believe that dating in high school can negatively affect your personality, Simpson disagrees.
Simpson then expresses how dating in high school has positively affected her identity and mental health.
“[My partner] has helped me grow as a person so much. I struggle with anxiety so she’s helped me figure out ways to cope with it and just to realize I don’t have to be perfect all the time. She’s always been there for me whenever I’ve been at pretty low spots, and has helped me figure out who I am as a person, even if that’s a little cheesy,” Simpson said.
Dating in high school is not all sunshine and rainbows however, many high school couples can experience hardships throughout their relationship. High school couples today have to navigate a culture full of cheating, rumors, lying, and backstabbing.
Despite the difficulties that high school couples may face, there seems to be a common consensus that at the end of the day, getting to have someone to be there for you makes the trials of high school dating worth it.
Scott and Green, because they chose to fight through these possible hardships, have been able to experience a multitude of benefits from their relationship.
“Faith has made me more patient. I’m usually very fast [paced] and want to get going on things, but [since] dating Faith, I’ve learned to slow down and wait. [I think] since dating me, Faith has learned to be more patient and less hard on herself. [I feel like] throughout dating me she has learned to take her time and be less critical with the things that she does,” Scott said.
Stephens concludes that dating in high school expands his support system.
“You have someone besides your friends. You have someone special there who is able to talk to you and make you feel cared for as if they were a family member[or someone who genuinely cares for you],” Stephens said.
For Simpson and Scott, the sweet memories make dating in high school worth it.
“The most fun part [of dating in high school] is just getting to have fun with my partner and getting to do all the fun things that come with being in a relationship. I would say one of my favorite memories is just when we were hanging out one day and I realized that I really wanted to be in a serious relationship. We were just hanging out having fun and talking and it felt very comfortable and natural. I just felt so incredible [at ease] with her in a way that I haven’t ever been comfortable with anyone in the past,” Simpson said.
“One of my favorite memories of us has to be this past summer when we went to Six Flags, Faith has never been before. She would say she was going to die before every ride only for her to love every single one of them. Getting to see her try things she has never done before and [getting] to see that she loves them is one of my favorite things to see,” Scott said.

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