“Grease” gave us our first glimpse into the summer romance. The film’s main characters Danny and Sandy happily sang, “Summer lovin’ had me a blast/ Summer lovin’ happened so fast.” Suddenly, the idea was planted into our minds — an exciting affair with the unexpected cutie next door, whether that be on vacation or elsewhere — seemed exciting. But what happens when our wishes for summer flings come true?

Summer flings are supposed to be fun. They mean no expectations and no regrets. They’re basically short-term, passionate relationships that come as the result of long summer days, magical starry nights, and very intense physical attraction. Come fall, happy memories of summer boys leave girls dreamily smiling in the middle of class.

Sounds great, right?

As much as I hate to kill any joyous dreams of summer flings, I have to play emotion police for a minute. As girls, we must keep in mind that these relationships last the summer. Meaning four months assuming that, like most summer flings, it doesn’t go past the summer — hence the name “summer fling.”

When faced with a blossoming summer romance, it is important to suppress any unrealistic initial expectations by taking into account the circumstances. Are we starting something with someone from a vacation spot or are we hooking up with a guy that we go to school with? We must consider the amount of time we will likely have with the person. If the chances of seeing each other on a fairly regular basis post-summer are slim (like with a vacation hook-up), we must restrain the notion that the romance will become a long-term relationship. Of course there are always exceptions, but if we think of the definition of a “fling,” it’s not supposed to last that long.

Now we should take a step back and think about who we are and what we want out of the fling. Let’s envision our winter selves looking back at our summer selves. Is there nostalgia or a feeling of emptiness? Keep in mind that everything seems perfect in the moment, but once on the outside looking in, the situation seems a lot different. Bottom line: avoid feelings of regret from winter self.

Flings can be extremely exciting, but we still must exercise caution! As fun as they are, feelings are still involved — and those can be pretty lethal and can lead to mistakes.

The fling is supposed to be fun, carefree, and a happy memory. No stress allowed. These are all things to think about when, sadly, our “Summer dreams (are) ripped at the seams.” But luckily we can still enjoy, “those summer nights.”

Now let’s get out there and find our summer boys!

What are your experiences with summer flings?