Flyby Investigates: How are Freshman Getting Cuffed?
A common piece of advice upperclassmen give to incoming freshmen is to avoid relationships. Normally, it’s a weird dynamic having a s/o during your freshman fall: you’re trying to build new platonic relationships; you’re partying; you’re taking on a rigorous academic/extracurricular workload. There’s just no time! However, this year, we’ve seen so many frosh leaving campus in a relationship. (WHY?!?!) The simple answer is our experience is a bit... different. Don’t worry, we’re amazed too.
The Zoom DMs
Many freshmen claim they were approached by their s/o in the ZMs. With all online classes, it should be obvious that relationships would stem from them. Frosh were desperate to make friends ~or~ maybe something more than friends. Thus, we traded the “wanna grab coffee after class?” irl for “wow, your hair looks really good today!” in a private message. Everyone knows the excitement of receiving a DM on Zoom... BUT to receive a flirty one: how could you resist?! This phenomenon of a “Zoom Crush” is not just a Harvard phenomenon, as the Washington Post claims that other college students around the country are experiencing them as well. (Hey — at least we aren’t alone in shooting our shots!).
The cancellation of Visitas meant frosh had to find some interesting ways of meeting their incoming class – suddenly, the class GroupMe was the hottest place to be! Bigger group chats led to smaller group chats, which sometimes led to individual messages. Many claim that they bonded with their s/o all quarantine with tons of texts and late night FaceTimes— only to simply seal the deal when getting to campus. So unlike some upperclassmen experiences, freshmen had been talking to their person intensely since March/April. They felt like they knew them really well, making it really easy to take it to the ~next level~ when coming to campus.
Let’s be real — the most obvious reason so many freshmen are cuffed is due to the pandemic. Loneliness right now is majorly prevalent. Commitment isn’t as scary when we think about how much we’ve lost this year! Why wait? You’re in desperate need of someone you can depend on or just have fun with — to hopefully bring you some joy in this stressful time. Muriel Dol ‘24 claims she didn’t have a problem committing because she didn’t want any “situationships.” She didn’t want to worry about someone who wasn’t hers when she was in a new environment about to meet lots of people.
A lot of the issues with getting cuffed freshman fall is the possibility of committing too soon before you meet everyone — this year, that’s simply not the case. There’s no parties or big gatherings (at least there shouldn’t be) where you feel like you’ll meet someone else you’re interested in. It’s hard to meet people in person, and even harder to make close relationships with social distancing guidelines and masks. So, when frosh met their person and vibed… there was no hesitation!
Somehow, freshmen have truly become the trailblazers for the latest quarantine relationships on Harvard’s campus. Is our class just more lax and open to commitment? Or is the pandemic inspiring these traits? Who knows! Nevertheless, the frosh seem happy, and that’s all that matters<3 xoxo, flossip girl