Quite Frankly

Hey Frankie,

I am a cis, female, second-semester senior who is disillusioned with cisgender men at Vassar and beyond. Virtually every (very brief) non-platonic encounter I’ve had with a boy in the past three and a half years has ended with him being 1) not in a place for dating, let alone a relationship, or 2) seriously creepy, to be quite frank. How do I find a bright, mature, sensitive and kind young man for whom the timing is right?


Cynical, Still-Single, Second-Semester Senior

Dear Senior,

Quite frankly, I don’t think I can prescribe a method. I don’t know who first said this, but here we go: Love is like a fart—if you have to force it, it’s probably shit.

At the risk of gross overgeneralization, odds are decent that Vassar’s pool of single, women-attracted, non-creepy, emotionally available cis dudes looking for a relationship is… smaller than you would probably like it to be. And finding a non-Vassar young man who checks all of your boxes would require the kind of romance novel-worthy meet-cute that only comes around a few times in a generation.

My advice, infuriating as it no doubt will be, is to stop looking. Let me clarify: I don’t mean give up. Anyone who knows me knows I believe in cheesy, cliche, completely real love stories that happen when we least expect them. That’s the root of my advice. Something can’t be “when you least expect it” if you’re actively searching for it.

As an obsessive planner, I understand the desire to get your romantic life settled, and quickly. But think about it: Is now, just before you’re about to depart the hallowed halls of Vassar College and embark on your next steps, the right time to 1) look for a man who wants to follow you to wherever you’re going next and 2) expect such a man to also be actively searching for a girlfriend? The closer we get to Commencement, the less likely it is that someone remains willing to cultivate a deep, emotional attachment to a classmate.

I don’t want to worsen your cynicism by pointing this out. I merely wish to suggest that there’s still plenty of time to stumble into the whirlwind romance of your dreams.

Best wishes,


P.S. Rom-coms are the cathartic gift that keeps on giving—they may break your heart, but there’s almost always a satisfying end. Maybe what you need right now is a really good rom-com. I recommend “10 Things I Hate About You.”

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