Going off to college can be scary, but it’s even scarier to think about going off to college without your high school sweetheart. When you have been in a long relationship in high school, that person becomes a huge part of your world and an aspect of your future. The common worry is: how will my high school sweetheart and I make it through college?
I am a junior in college right now, and I have been dating my boyfriend since junior year of high school. A lot of my sisters and friends have asked, “oh my gosh, how do you make it work?” or “How hard is it to be with the same person in college as you were in high school?” Honestly, it’s not hard at all when you are with someone you don’t want to be without. That’s kind of how you know if the relationship is worth it. Can you see yourself not waking up to a good morning text tomorrow? Or how about not being able to reach over the table and try a bite off of his plate and not worry about being judged? If you answered no like I did, then don’t give up because of college and try to make the best of it and make it work.
I know it may be tempting, especially if you went to the same high school, but DO NOT chose college’s together with the sole intent of going to the same school. It will be harder to make new friends because you will be attached to the hip since you are both comfortable with each other, and it will ultimately make it harder for you to branch out. What happens if you two break up? I know you don’t want to think about it, but that would be a serious damper on your plans for picking out wall decor for your junior year apartment together.
When you get to meet and know each other’s friends, it will make you both more comfortable. Yeah, you will hear the names of the people you’re each hanging around with, but being able to put a face to the name will make each of you more comfortable. Unfortunately, girl’s tend to think of the worst and will imagine that the guy’s their boyfriend is hanging out with is a bad influence and womanizers, but when you meet them you will realize they are actually really genuine and kind individuals.
College means new experiences including clubs, intramurals, and greek life. If your sweetheart shows interest in something within their school, encourage them and tell them to go for it! Nothing is worse then hearing, “That’s stupid. Don’t do that, it’s a waste of time and money.” You want your sweetheart to be happy at their new school, and you being happy for them will make them happy. If you are discouraging about something they show interest in and they don’t do it because of what you said or how you reacted, they may never do it and resent you which is not good.
Things are going to be different, it is unavoidable, but embrace this change with open arms. You may not be able to see each other everyday, but you will be that much more excited for that daily phone call or weekly Skype session. You can’t dwell on the changes that will be happening because it is out of your control (conflicting schedules, new environments, not being together 24/7, etc.) so find the positives and roll with them. Remember, you’re not in high school it’s time to grow up.
If one of you does really well on an exam, be excited with them and tell them how proud you are of them! Or if one of you does bad on a homework assignment or misses the game winning shot in intramural sports, give them a hypothetical pat on the back and tell them they’ll do better next time and even offer to help practice with them. It’s the little things, like encouraging texts, that will remind your sweetheart why they find you so special.
Whether its a bundle of crazy daisies or your school’s t-shirt, a little surprise like that will bring a smile to your sweetheart’s face and make their day. One time my boyfriend bought me a huge, and when I say huge I mean bigger then my head, cupcake and surprised me with it when I saw him because I had a terrible week. It made me so happy, and it also reminded me that he listened to everything I had said and knew just what to do to make me feel better. I do not suggest doing random visits, only because it could throw your sweetheart off guard and make it look like you are spying on them (even if it is not the intention).
I can not stress this enough: DO NOT FIGHT THROUGH TEXT BE ADULTS AND CALL EACH OTHER. Text messages cause so much miscommunication. The reader tries to interpret the tone of the text, which most of the time is wrong, which just fuels the fire. Talking on the phone about it, if being in person is unrealistic because of distance, will save you both the drama and prevent any permanent damage.
Reassure each other that it is okay to have new friends and enjoy themselves even though you’re not together. Your sweetheart and you need to grow roots in the schools you both plan to be at for the next four years. Do not make each other feel guilty for having a new life out of high school, especially if you both are making room for each other in it. You will ultimately grow stronger as a couple if you each can grow stronger as individuals.
It’s that simple, don’t keep texting and calling if you don’t hear from them for a few hours. There is a thing called class which takes up a lot of time and if they are involved in extracurriculars that will take time up too. Although, be nice and let your sweetheart know you are “going to the gym” or “going to class” and tell them you will text them after.
This may not be able to happen if you are both very busy on the weekend, but if you can make time for it I highly suggest it. My boyfriend and I go to my lake house in New York once a semester just to escape from the stress from school, and we always come back from it even closer. It could be as simple as a day trip to a hip and trendy city nearby, just anything to get out of your normal settings.