I'll admit it, I would prefer to have a dog or guinea pig over my betta. But he has helped me through a lot in college.
I got him when I was very stressed and my depression was worsening. It feels good to have something to care for. I'll sit infront of my spoiled little betta's 10gal tank and just watch him when I have free time.
My boyfriend gave me an odd look when I said I missed my betta over spring break. (I had a friend caring for him). But he didn't judge too much because he knew how much I wanted a pet but college only allow fish.
A few people give me odd looks when I start talking about my fish like... "he's so cute! I bought him the nice frozen food and I'm teaching him tricks right now. And he loves it when I get near the tank, he dances along the glass!!"