The Vampire DiariesStefan Salvatore (Paul Wesley) arguably had the worst summer ever, but luckily for him (and us) it’s almost time for Season 5! Here are three things we want to see happen for Stefan’s character in the upcoming season.

1. A different love interest, or two!

This may be TVD blasphemy, but with Damon and Elena in love and shacking up in Season 5, we think it’s time Stefan engage in some casual dating (even if he and Elena eventually get back together come on, you know it’s inevitable!). Poor Stefan has been stuck on Elena since Day One, and we’d love to see him expand his dating horizons past his feeling for his unavailable ex-girlfriend. After all, there are plenty of doppelgangers in the sea! We kid. We think it might be best if Stefan looked outside the Katerina doppelganger mold this time. Maybe spend a little time perusing his choices on OkVamp, the supernatural world’s answer to free dating sites? We’re also open to him appearing on some kind of vamped up version of The Dating Game.

2. More friend time

But Stefan is more than just a piece of love meat to be bandied around from woman to woman! Some of Stefan’s most interesting relationships are with the lady friends in his life - as in, the platonic kind. And arguably our favorite version of Stefan is the one he is when he’s with said lady friends. Lady BFF Lexi is really, really dead - at least for now - but Lady BFF 2.0 Caroline Forbes is still alive (sort of) and kicking. Their friendship has been a refreshingly recurring subplot on a show that can become so focused on its romantic storylines, especially where Stefan is involved. We know Caroline is going to be busy with her freshman year at Whitmore College, but we hope she takes some time to hang with Stefan. After a summer at the bottom of a quarry, he’s gonna need some friend time.

3. Some serious (and miserable) repercussions

Now that we’ve given Stefan some breaks with suggestions for a new girlfriend and some quality BFF time, we’d like to put in a request for some misery, please! We know that Stefan not only went through an endless cycle of drowning, dying, and coming back to life while stuck in that box at the bottom of the quarry, but also endured painful hallucinations. This is not something one usually bounces back from. Generally. We hope Stefan emerges from that box a changed vampire and that TVD takes the time to explore the repercussions of this traumatic experience. Also, the repercussions of finding out you are “the shadow self” of the biggest, baddest vampire that ever lived.

What would you like to see happen to Stefan in Season 5? Sound off in the comments below!

Catch the Season 5 premiere of The Vampire Diaries on Thursday, October 3, 2013, at 8 p.m. ET on The CW.