Written by Shamira James
Cody Shell is a 22-year-old senior from Hardee, Va. Shell is a communications major, a psychology minor and also plays baseball for your RC Maroons.
“Me and my fiance, Remi, met in the fourth grade. We lived two doors down from each other, and our parents were friends, but we didn’t know each other at all. I go to get on the bus for the first time as this new kid, and she was a little standoffish, which makes sense because I was this little kid in her face like ‘I know you! Our parents are friends!’ and that was weird. So we always joke that she was my bully back in the day. As we got older, we matured and became friends.
“We started dating when I when I was the eighth grade and she was a freshman in high school, and we’ve been together since then. I knew early on, almost so early it was scary, that I wanted to be with her for forever. I never saw anyone else because I knew what I wanted and she eventually did too, so this past summer, Aug. 3, I proposed to her.
“Relationships in high school are very nominal. It doesn’t have that emotional crutch that a real relationship has. I’ve always been very emotionally aware, which I think is very important. I’ve always tried to go above and beyond from the beginning of our relationship. I would go the extra mile to be for her what she was for me – the one. It kind of put her off how dedicated I was, but then almost like overnight she realized that I was always there, I was always clear about my intentions and I was always real. I come from a broken home, my parents divorced in an ugly way, and it made me determined to not go through that. So from the beginning, it’s about the foundation and I wanted to start building that foundation right away.”
“I think hookup culture is mainly due to a lack of relational knowledge and emotional awareness. Even to get technical, the way men and women use sex is different. Men use it as physical pleasure and women use it for emotional connection. We all want different things and until two people want the same thing, the cycle continues. And so, in that aspect, I’m somewhat on the outs on the [baseball] team. We’re all close like a family, but it comes down to everyone is always looking for a score, and the more you score, the cooler you are and the more game you have. People say I’m ‘settling down too early’ or ‘I’m in my prime’ but I don’t see it that way. For me, I found this girl I want to make happy forever and always, so I don’t put myself out there in any other way for anybody else. Men mature later than women, and from the ages of 18-26, men tend to be on the scummier side. There are good men who stand by their women and treat people right, but they seem to be the minority. It’s not even all physical, there’s a lack of emotional attention given from men to women.”
“The best relationship advice I can give is to stop asking ‘how can they make me happy?’ and ask ‘how can I make them happy?’ This stems from knowing love languages, going above and beyond to fulfill the wants and needs of that person. It’s both the little and big things that matter.