If you and your high school sweetheart are faced with the possibility of a long-distance relationship in college because you will be going to different schools, it can be hard to decide what to do.
No matter your age or stage of life, long-distance relationships are always tough.
So are long-distance relationships in college ever worth it?
Should You Stay or Stray?
When deciding if you want to try a long-distance relationship in college, there are a few things to consider.
First of all, how serious is your relationship? If you don’t see your partner as a part of your future anyway, it might be best to avoid long-distance stress. If you’re only hanging on to your current boyfriend or girlfriend until the next best thing comes along, it’s time to cut them loose – the next best thing may come along in college!
It’s also important to be realistic about how much of a commitment each of you is willing to make.
- How far apart will you be?
- How often can you see one another?
- Will you split visits evenly – or if one of you always visits the other, will you split the cost of transportation?
- Will one of you have a car on campus that you can take for visits?
- How often do you want to talk on the phone? Will you even be in the same time zone?
These are boring (and sometimes stressful) details to discuss, but deciding on essentials like this now can save you some serious drama down the line.
Pros and Cons of Long-Distance Relationships in College
Believe it or not, there are some positive aspects to long-distance relationships.
When moving to college, it can be a comfort to have someone you already know well who you can talk to regularly about classes, the people you meet, and the new things you are learning and trying.
The key is that your partner supports these new experiences and doesn’t try to hold you back or deter you from finding your own path in college (and vice versa!).
On the flip side, it can be difficult to be physically separated from your primary confidant and source of support. Also, your new social life in college — all of those new experiences and new people each of you are meeting — can incite bouts of jealousy, even in the most secure of couples.
What’s more, you also run the risk of ostracizing yourself socially if you spend all of your spare time texting or Skyping your boyfriend or girlfriend.
If You Decide to Stay Together …
If you’re going to try a long-distance relationship in college, be prepared for the challenge. Long-distance relationships require a bit more maintenance, time and energy than others – and long-distance relationships in college are especially tough.
Why? College is all about trying new things, making new friends and developing as a person. As two people in a relationship go through such changes as independent “I”s, it can be difficult to maintain the communal “we.”
That said, if you and your significant other decide to give long distance a go, that doesn’t mean your relationship is doomed! I can think of at least two acquaintances who are happily married to their high school sweethearts after having had long-distance relationships throughout college.
Just remember that college is your time and an experience you have only once. If a long-distance relationship in college gets to be too much, it’s okay to break it off. College is the time for you to focus on yourself, and if a relationship (long distance or otherwise) is getting in the way of that, it might be time to move on.