“Don’t ever, ever call me again, you low–life scum, you trash!” I hang up with finality, promising that this is the last time I break up with my on–again, off–again “boyfriend”—at least, that’s what I think I’m supposed to call him. It’s hard when no one wants to put a label on anything in college, but everyone still wants rules about who sleeps where and whether to make that call checking in around 1 a.m.. I am the prototypical “crazy girlfriend.” I succumb to all the crazy gf misgivings—I check his phone when it buzzes, ask those heavy questions about what he’s doing Friday night, stalk his Facebook for cutesy posts from other girls. Even to myself, I sound “over–invested” in a relationship that I’m too scared to acknowledge with something as serious as “FB official” status.
But I’m not the only crazy one. As my girlfriends and I gather in our usual Saturday morning brunch spot, I’m acutely aware of their "crazy antics." Last Friday night, Jackie scrolled through her boyfriend’s texts when he was asleep. The kicker is that he’s a proud owner of the new iPhone 5S, but she just pressed his indolent finger to the lock key and presto—she’s in. Steph just had a fight with her “exclusive” hook–up over the hot girl he recently followed on Instagram. She’s positive he’s not following a 27 year–old stripper because he likes her filters. Sometimes these shameful confessions are funny, but most of the time, they echo a truly deep fear that many college kids share: no one is trustworthy.
I’m not saying that this assertion is true; I’m merely pointing out the factors that drive us all nuts. In this digital age, it’s incredibly easy for anyone to have a second or third identity. It’s easier to keep your secrets in your inbox than a lockbox, and only you know the shameful things that a few clicks can surface. It doesn’t help when most people are scared that being in anything too serious or too official might just lead to less fun or a missed opportunity. After all, this is college. There are tons of young, beautiful people who are looking for other young, beautiful people to DFMO with on any given night. Even I can admit that titles and relationships are confusing, especially after six shots of God–knows–what.
It’s even worse when all of us have been hurt before. If you are one of the lucky few who hasn’t had your sneaking suspicions confirmed, bless you. May you wander in your blissful state until you are married with three children and pleased with your beautiful, white–picket–fence life. But if you’re like me, or like one of my girlfriends, or like Natalie Portman in Closer, you know building trust is like birthing twins—harder the second time around. So forgive me if I’m dating you and I can’t help flinching every time you Snapchat that cute girl from back home, but I am your crazy girlfriend and I will unapologetically keep doing these crazy things until someone proves to me that these things are, in fact, crazy...until someone proves to me that trusting someone is sane.