I positioned myself in college in such a way that I can’t have a meaningful romantic relationship, because I’m always busy and the people that I am interested in are always busy, too. And I know everyone says, ‘Make time, make time.’ But there are so many other things going on in my life that I find so important that I just, like, can’t make time, and I don’t want to make time.So she has a hookup buddy, a guy she doesn't like and avoids unless she wants to have sex.
The most striking images to me are these young, ambitious people too busy for romance, and the crucial role of alcohol in fueling these interactions. Everyone's introduction to the hookup scene seems to come while drunk, often in circumstances where consent is a fuzzy concept.
Not everyone is like this; Taylor found a diversity of views among Princeton women, from the eager embrace of hooking up as a way to keep options open to a profound distaste for the whole thing. One of the anti-hookup women was "Catherine," who is holding out for real romance. Taylor writes,
In Catherine’s view, her classmates tried very hard to separate sex from emotion, because they believed that getting too attached to someone would interfere with their work. They saw a woman’s marrying young as either proof of a lack of ambition or a tragic mistake that would stunt her career.And the things is, these women are not wrong. If you want to rise to the top of our meritocracy you really do have to work very hard, be willing to move across the globe as opportunities arise, keep your options open, and spend your time networking and studying instead of getting to know one special someone.
Which just sucks. Can it really be a good thing for a society if the route to the top means avoiding, not just marriage and children, but any sort of romantic involvement? And what kind of life is that?