Honesty Shouldn’t Be Convenient

You should value honesty all the time because it will always benefit you, even if you don’t realize right away.

This article was originally published for The Odyssey on December 11, 2017.

I’m an incredibly honest person; this can be both good and bad, depending on the situation. No, I don’t go out of my way to be mean to someone, but I’m not afraid to say what I think, even if the truth may hurt. People usually either really enjoy my honesty or they absolutely hate it. They perceive me as a bitch who doesn’t care about anything, which isn’t true. Here’s the thing though: honesty shouldn’t be mixed up with self-interest. If you value honesty at all, you should want others to be honest with you all the time, not just when it’s convenient for you.

Many people think that in a close relationship, people should enable one another and support each other’s decisions, regardless of whether they’re wrong or right. I think if you’re willing to ride or die for someone, that’s one thing, but you shouldn’t enable them or lie to them. A healthy relationship, whether intimate or not, means that you both feel safe and secure in being honest with one another. If you don’t feel comfortable being honest, there’s an issue that should be fixed.

We live in a world where people are very two-faced; it can be hard to recognize how someone truly feels. I’ve been lied to way too many times to turn around and treat someone the awful way I felt after being betrayed. I know it’s hard to trust people but honest people are often the most trustworthy because they have no motivation to lie.

Honesty shouldn’t be convenient; it’s not something that should be utilized when one party is comfortable and then cut out when that party becomes uncomfortable. Honesty is meant to benefit both sides of a situation or circumstance, but perhaps in different ways. Wouldn’t you rather someone be upfront and real with you rather than saying one thing, only to turn around and say something else?

If you would rather have someone lie straight to your face so that you can preserve your feelings or self-interest, you may need to reevaluate yourself and your expectations. That’s not a healthy dynamic.

You shouldn’t value my honesty for entertainment and then turn around and act like I’m this terrible person for telling you the truth later on. Just because you’ve changed your perspective given the circumstance doesn’t mean that I’m a bitch. But sometimes you need to be a bitch to get shit done and almost always you need to be honest to communicate effectively in every circumstance.

You should value honesty in someone no matter what the circumstance; it takes bravery to stand up and say what you truly think about something. Even if you think the truth doesn’t benefit you, it probably does in some way. Just try and keep that in mind.


12 Reasons Why I Won’t Find Prince Charming Anytime Soon

It’ll happen when it happens.

This article was originally published for The Odyssey on December 6, 2017.

I am at a point in my life where many of my friends are in long-term relationships. Many of those same friends wouldn’t mind spending the rest of their lives with their current significant others. I have always been the single friend who gives everyone else advice, and while I’m a little tired of third-wheeling, I don’t think I’ll be in a relationship anytime soon. Here’s why:

1. I am terrified to make the first move.

When I see a cute boy, I pretty much keep my mouth shut… forever. I’m not likely to ask them to even hang out as friends, nonetheless on a date. I will never make the first move… I have zero confidence.

2. Commitment is kind of scary.

Not to sound old-fashioned or generalize, but commitment isn’t what it used to be. People are usually never satisfied these days, and it’s scary to see something so good go south so quickly.

3. Sometimes I expect too much.

From both myself and others. I get upset when I don’t receive the results I expected, too. This would be a factor in a relationship that’s hard to work with.

4. My mental health hasn’t been great lately.

I cried over not being able to successfully cook ground meat yesterday.

5. Feelings are dumb.

Feelings can really blind you from seeing something for how it truly is.

6. Dating apps will never be my thing.

I’m never gonna be able to message first. I’m never gonna wanna hook up and I’m never gonna be smooth enough to interact with boys on Tinder.

7. I have zero time to relax.

My schedule is jam-packed with schoolwork, regular work, and other commitments. I don’t even know when I’d be able to make time for a possible date.

8. I am not a patient person.

I’m working on it, but patience is so not my strong-suit.

9. I don’t know how to flirt.

?????Is there a class for this??????

10. I don’t go out enough to meet someone.

The parties I do go to are with friends and friends only.

11. I’m incredibly awkward around boys.

Palms sweaty, mom’s spaghetti awkward.

12. I’m not actually actively looking for anything.

It’ll happen when it happens, right?


You’re Actually The Worst If You Have One Of These 12 Terrible Tinder Bios

You’d be rich if you had a dollar every time you saw these bios. Like pay-for-college-tuition-rich.

This article was originally published for Swoon on October 23, 2017.

If you’ve never used Tinder, consider yourself lucky.

Anyone who has spent even five minutes on the app can tell you that it’s mostly a waste of time. You either find people who have their life story in their bios, or they have the same quotes from the same television shows that everyone is tired of hearing about.

If you had a dollar for every time you saw these 12 bios on Tinder, you’d have enough money to pay for college, probably.

1. “Favorite Food: Milksteak. Hobbies: Magnets. Likes: Little Green Ghouls. Dislikes: Peoples’ Knees.”

I like “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” as much as the next person, but this is the worst. Nobody likes peoples’ knees! It’s not funny anymore!

2. “Bears, beets, Battlestar Galactica.”

You probably don’t even know what Battlestar Galactica is. FOH.

3. “Some people call me _____, but you can call me tonight.”

This line is so old it’s not even smooth anymore; just crusty.

4. “Not (insert legal age here), 17.”

Listen, I know it was the bee’s knees to make Facebook profiles when you were 13 and say that you were 21, but this is downright terrible.

5. “Just looking to meet people/make friends.”

Okay, I know I’m a wildcard for looking for a relationship on the app, but friends?! LEAVE.

6. “Anything you wanna know, just ask.”

Okay, I would, except, you never answer my messages.

7. “Looking for my tinderella…”


8. “‘You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take’ – Wayne Gretzky – Michael Scott”

I don’t think this has ever been funny. I can’t be the only one.

9. “I don’t message first.”

You probably don’t message back either.

10. “Just got out of a long-term relationship and-“

Okay, we haven’t even met yet. I don’t need your relationship history.

11. “I enjoy long walks on the beach.”

Swipe left.

12. “‘One hell of a guy.’ – New York Times. ‘Outstanding gentleman.’ – Washington Post. ‘I wish I could be more like him.’ – Ellen.”

Can’t you just introduce yourself like any normal person?

To My Best Friend Studying Abroad This Semester

This semester you’ll be hopefully happy, hopefully healthy and hopefully on an adventure.

This article was originally published for The Odyssey on September 20, 2017.

Hey pal,

I know you are about to embark on the most amazing trip of your life. Traveling to another country for academics is an amazing feat that not everyone has the opportunity to do. You’re about to experience so many new things; between culture, language, meeting new people and probably the best part, food, you’re going to have a great time; no doubt about it.

While this is all true, I’m going to miss you. You’re a huge part of my life and not having you so close is going to be really hard. Even at different colleges, we still make it a point to talk every day, whether it be through a text, Snapchat, Facebook, Facetime, or literally any other platform you can think of. We’ve always been there for each other. Although I know this trip is going to open so many new doors for you and I’m incredibly excited that you have this opportunity, a part of me is a little sad that you’re leaving.

The time difference is what worries me the most. You’ll probably be waking up soon after I hit the hay, and our schedules will likely never line up. I know you have other people to talk to, like your family or significant other, but I can’t help but feel like we’ll just keep missing each other in communication.

This won’t stop me from trying, though. You are my best friend, and I will do absolutely anything I can to remain in contact with you. Your time abroad is going to be beyond amazing, and I can’t wait to see all the new things you experience. You know I’ll want to see photos as soon as you land, as soon as you settle down and as soon as you get comfortable. If possible, I’m more than willing to write you letters or postcards or send a carrier pigeon, if that’s what I must do.

I am beyond happy and excited for you. I will also miss you more than you can imagine. I know I’ll see you after some time, it’s not like it’s forever, but I will definitely notice your absence. Just know that if you ever need to talk to someone, or if you feel homesick at any time, I will absolutely be available to FaceTime, Skype, Snapchat, or anything else on a Wi-Fi connection at any time.

North America will be sad to see you go, but your country is gaining one ambitious and adventurous young woman. Remember that I’ll always be here for you, even when our time-zones don’t line up and our schedules are the complete opposite. I love you, and I know you’ll make the most of everything. I can’t wait to hear all about it when you come home. Have the best time ever this semester, and I’ll be waiting to give you the biggest hug ever when you return.

When I Say All My Friends Are Beautiful, I’m Not Lying

When you know someone for long enough, they radiate so much beauty it can be blinding.

This article was originally published for The Odyssey on September 13, 2017.

Self-love isn’t easy. Realizing the person in the mirror is the person other people see is even harder. When people give you compliments, you may shy away or lash out, because you don’t see the person they do. You know what is easy, though? Complimenting other people. When I say all my friends are beautiful, it’s because they are.

Ever since I was young, I’ve had trouble making long-term friends. My mom and grandmother have friends from elementary, middle and high school still and that concept was so foreign to me growing up. How can you bond with someone and be patient with them for so long? How could you enjoy each other’s company for more than 20 years? Could such a thing even be possible in today’s world?

I had dealt with so much negativity in my school years that I struggled to see beauty in anything, nonetheless myself. I had friends who seemed sweet at first, but turned out to be vicious later. There was so much toxicity in my friendships that I thought friendship was meant to be that way. I didn’t know what healthy friendships were; I didn’t know that healthy relationships, period, could exist at all.

It wasn’t until my senior year of high school that I came to terms with what the word ‘friendship’ even meant. I had never experienced a ‘true’ friend, so to say, and it wasn’t until I left high school and transitioned into college that I understood anything about friendship. They say you find your real friends when you go through a difficult life event, such as a transition or illness. I cannot stress how completely true this is.

Though I didn’t have such a hard time transitioning into college, my friends did. Those who I kept in contact with formed a strong bond with me, one that is unbreakable to this day. When I say all my friends are beautiful, I mean it. All of my friends are beautiful, inside and out.

When you’ve been friends with someone through a stressful event, that is either your own or something on their side, you see all the beauty they have to offer. After you’ve seen someone at both their best and worst, it’s easy to see the beauty they express in a plethora of different ways.

When I say my friends are beautiful, it’s not a lie I tell them to make them feel better about themselves. All the friends I have right now are long-term friends. They are people whom I trust; people I could tell anything to without judgment and vice-versa. They are people who have stuck with me through the good, the bad and the in-between. I won’t call you a friend if I can’t trust you. The word will not even slip out of my mouth.

Even when my friends have parts of them that aren’t beautiful, I will still call them beautiful, because no one is perfect. Everyone has ugly flaws and everyone makes mistakes. Choosing to work on their mistakes and accept their flaws makes them even more beautiful, in my opinion.

If loving yourself isn’t so easy, or it’s a concept you haven’t yet grasped, you’ll be able to feel love by spreading love. Smile by spreading smiles and feeling positivity by spreading positivity are great ways to give yourself love when you aren’t quite sure of how to do so. You should always be a friend to yourself, even if that means something as small as treating yourself to a bath once in awhile or listening to your favorite music.

When you say that your friends are beautiful, it’s because they are. When your friends say that you are beautiful, it is because they have seen the same things in you. It is because they see something you can’t. Always be a friend to yourself, above everything else. Remember, you are truly beautiful, too, even if when you say that your friends are beautiful, you don’t mean you.


In A World Of Lydia Bennets, I Am An Elizabeth Bennet

I’m 20-years-old, a junior in college and I have never been in a relationship.

This article was originally published for The Odyssey on September 6, 2017.

I have always felt very drawn toward “Pride and Prejudice” by Jane Austen. The book, the movie adaptations (including “Pride and Prejudice and Zombies”), the sequel adaptations (like “Death Comes to Pemberley”) and even The Lizzie Bennet Diaries own a special place in my heart. I used to think it was because I loved period movies, like “Gone With the Wind,” “Little Women” and “Mansfield Park.” But, no, I’ve discovered through many of the adaptations, that my true love lies with none other than Elizabeth Bennet.

It seems that in today’s world, everyone is in a rush to be in a relationship. Everyone seems to be in a rush to be with someone, settle down and stay with that one person forever. If you ask me, it sounds a little too good to be true. The relationships our parents and grandparents once had aren’t readily available like they used to be. Young people today are often baffled by how many options there are in modern dating, and most feel opposed to settling down. Modern dating is large loop of dissatisfaction it seems.

I’m 20 years old, a junior in college and I have never been in a relationship. I’ve never even come close to being in a relationship. At times, it’s been frustrating. I’ve wondered if there’s something wrong with me, or if I’m in the wrong place or some similar. I’ve often wondered if perhaps my time is running out, since most of my friends have found someone they like so much that they’ve been with them for several years now.

Though it can be frustrating and annoying to be in my boat, I feel almost more comfortable with it. It’s not that I don’t want to be in a relationship, it’s just that I know looking for one is a wild goose chase in today’s world. Dating apps like Plenty of Fish and Tinder either draw in creeps and perverts or guys who don’t want to date, only hook-up. Trying to meet people through blind dates or friends often follows a similar pattern.

It’s taken me a couple of years, but I’ve decided to stop looking for love altogether. It’s not that I’ve given up on it, or anything, but I just think that if it’s meant to be, it’ll happen, one way or another. I think that’s why I identify so strongly with Lizzie Bennet; she had a similar opinion about marriage and settling down.

Though the plot of every “Pride and Prejudice” adaptation includes Mrs. Bennet attempting to marry off her girls to rich gentleman, every version also includes the headstrong Lizzie who refuses to settle for just any man. In “Pride and Prejudice and Zombies,” she has a conversation with Charlotte at the ball where Lizzie says, “I shall never relinquish my sword for a ring.” Charlotte replies and laughs, “For the right man, you would,” and Lizzie replies, “The right man wouldn’t ask me to.” I feel as though this theme runs throughout all the “Pride and Prejudice” adaptations and also my life.

I am interested in many things. I have many passions that fall in a great many of areas. I like writing, literature and publishing and editing, and although this is the preferred field of study, it may not be the one I embark in after graduation. I am also interested in stage managing and the technical side of theatre, and if perhaps there are no jobs in either of those things, I’d say I’m pretty well-versed in the area of event planning, as well.

I honestly think that throwing a boyfriend into the mess of my life, which includes all of these passions, my ambition to work with people and the struggles I endure with my mental illness, would be a little bit crazy. Maybe the Universe is waiting to hand me ‘the one.’ Or maybe, the Universe is attempting to wait until things cool down before I can and have time to meet any ‘one.’ Either way, I’m completely fine with waiting.

I’m in no rush to date, meet people or settle down. I’m 20. I have the rest of my twenties and maybe even some of my thirties to worry about those things. Meeting a man is at the bottom of my priorities list. I want to graduate college with a degree I want to pursue, find a job in one of the areas I’d like to pursue and settle down in an apartment of my own with a sense of some kind of stability.

If you’re unaware of the “Pride and Prejudice” book or any of its adaptations, you should know there are really three important characters in the Bennet family that are relevant to the big-picture.

There’s Elizabeth “Lizzie” Bennet, who is in no rush to settle down and is willing to wait for the ‘right’ man, rather than settling down in a marriage where no love is present, is the main character. There is also her older sister Jane, is a beautiful woman, not otherwise engaged, who knows the importance of love in a relationship but also realizes the value of and need for wealth in her time period.

Finally, there is Lydia, their younger sister, who loves to chase the soldiers around town, loves flirting and adores the idea of being someone’s wife. Her naivety is something that sets the family back more than she can comprehend.

I don’t really care about wealth in today’s age; I’ve always had to hustle and grind to get what I want in this world, and I would rather someone who has had a similar upbringing rather than someone way more privileged than me, so that crosses Jane off the list. I feel as though there aren’t many Jane-like people in today’s society, that more people are ready to settle down rather than wait and more people are looking at class differences to marry advantageously rather than not.

So that leaves Lizzie and Lydia. In a world of Lydia Bennets, I am an Elizabeth Bennet, and proudly, at that. I’m in no rush to meet a man and I am in less of a rush to marry and settle down. I could never be a trophy wife; I work too much and I don’t think that’s the sort of thing I would want to or think that I could ‘shut off’ per se.

I want to thank Jane Austen, Seth Grahame Smith, Hank Green and Bernie Su for creating such relatable Elizabeth Bennets. Without these characters, I would feel lost in the romantic world, not knowing quite what my options were. The “Pride and Prejudice” universe has always offered me comfort that my ‘Mr. Darcy’ is still out there. And maybe, just maybe, he’s waiting for me too.

18 Signs You’re A Strong, Independent Woman

Know yourself, know your worth.

“Here’s to strong women, may we KNOW them, may we BE them, may we RAISE them.” – Unknown

This article was originally published with The Odyssey on June 18, 2017.

Strong women are a gift to the universe. They help us live, learn, and grow. They shape who we are even if we don’t know them personally. Without them, we literally would not exist. Here’s to all the strong women out there – may we raise more girls to be brave, fearless, and proud like you.

1. You believe in yourself and others.

Though it may not always be inherently obvious, you know that you and your friends are capable of anything. You’re willing to encourage everyone and anyone who needs an extra push and when it comes to self-motivation, you’re willing to give it your best shot.

2. If the path is unclear, you’re willing to find another way.

Sometimes the rules aren’t clear, or they don’t make sense for everyone following them. You’re willing to think outside the box and find an alternative solution that will benefit everyone.

3. You’re more of a leader than a follower.

If you’re willing to find a way around the rules, you’re likely more of a leader than a follower. The world was built on strong, independent women, and we have no shame!

4. It’s more comfortable for you to do things your own way.

It’s not that you have a superiority complex or anything, but sometimes it’s more comforting to complete things the most efficient way possible (in your honest opinion).

5. You’re a role model to someone.

Even if it’s a neighbor, co-worker, a niece, or nephew, you matter to someone. Someone probably thinks you’re really cool even when you think you’re not looking so hot. Remember that you are always going to be #goals for someone.

6. You’re an emotional rock.

People come to you for help, whether it be emotional or physical. You offer a shoulder and stay strong for people who need you. It’s one of the traits that makes you so strong.

7. People rely on you.

Whether it be for money, work, friendship, or something else altogether; people rely on you. You’re dependable, and people know you won’t let them down. You’re an important person to know.

8. You’re passionate about whatever you do.

You put 100% dedication into everything you do, and people really value that. You know that the job isn’t done until you’ve seen it through to the end. You’re not afraid to do whatever you can to get to the finish line.

9. Honesty is something you value.

There is no strength in lying, in faking it, or in two-faced relationships. You know that honesty is important in every single endeavor. You set an honest precedent for everyone around you.

10. You ask for help when you need it.

Part of being strong is knowing how to ask for help. Being strong doesn’t mean carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders alone; it means knowing how to delegate and ask for help when you require it. A strong woman did not become strong without the help of other strong women.

11. You get shit done one way or another.

Even when you procrastinate something, you’re multitasking and getting work done. Even when you’re taking a break, you’re actively thinking about something else you have to work on. Finishing things isn’t a problem for you, no matter how much time you may need to finish them.

12. Even when you feel like you can’t pull yourself together, you do.

You know that tomorrow is a new day and everything will work itself out in the end. Even when it doesn’t work itself out, you figure something out and find a different way. You’re a perseverance expert when it comes to getting yourself together.

13. You test the limits.

Part of being a strong woman is breaking the bounds, changing the game, and making history. Whether it’s arguing for a pay raise, fight for equality, or something more personal, like escaping your comfort zone – there is no test to see how far you’ll go.

14. You empower other women, instead of putting them down.

You know that no strong woman became strong on her own. You empower and encourage other women instead of tearing them down. You stand with your fellow #strongwomen, and push them toward greatness.

15. No one needs to tell you how to live your life.

You are strong and independent! You don’t need anyone giving you directions or orders. You know this and refuse to accept those who attempt to order you around.

16. Sometimes you put others before yourself, but you still take care of yourself properly.

Part of being a strong person is knowing that there are others you either have to or want to take care of. Despite this, you still know how to engage in self-care. Without it, you know you won’t be strong enough to care for the others.

17. Even when you don’t feel strong, you hang in there for the people who need you.

Even on your worst days, you keep going. You’re not only someone who refuses to throw in the towel until everyone is safe and okay, but you’re also someone who makes sure everyone is comfortable and content before truly reeling it in for the day.

18. You know you’re a strong, independent woman who doesn’t need anyone to tell her otherwise.

Sometimes it’s not always obvious, but you know damn well that no one can undermine you. You know when you’re right and you know when you’re wrong even if you’re reluctant to admit it sometimes. You know when people are underestimating and undervaluing you. Know yourself, know your worth.