The good news about going from a long distance relationship to being in the same area is experiencing that necessary next step in love. There will be an adjustment period as you both get settled into a new routine and that should not be cause for panic. By maintaining open and clear lines of communication, a former long distance couple can successfully bridge that gap.
Macy Asks Nancy:
My boyfriend and I have been in a long-distance relationship for several years. We recently learned that we both have been accepted to our “dream” colleges, which means we’ll live close to each other for the first time. I’m excited, but nervous about what the adjustment will be like.
He is my first boyfriend, so I don’t know what it’s like to be with someone who can physically be around all the time. Normally, we communicate by phone or video chat and lead our separate lives. When we visit each other, our days just revolve around the two of us. I miss him when we’re apart, but I enjoy having the freedom to study, hang out with friends and have “me time” while still being in a happy relationship.
I love my boyfriend and want to be with him, but I also want to make new friends and focus on schoolwork. (He wants that, too.) I’m afraid that once we get to college we’ll either be so wrapped up in each other that we miss out on other stuff, or get so busy with school and friends that we never see each other. He shares my concerns, but neither of us knows how to make sure we strike a good balance. Can you help us?
It is positive that you are in open communication regarding this new (and necessary) stage in your relationship. It is natural to be a little anxious about change, but I assure you that balance will be found because of the care and concern you both see as a mutual goal. Yes, college is a fun and exciting and demanding time and the first priority is concentration on school work. It is why you are there and to make the most of the opportunity to earn a degree. In many ways, you will be somewhat like a new couple as you work towards this balance – and there is nothing wrong with having that adjustment period.
I encourage you to express yourselves when either feels out of balance. It will be a learning experience to figure out how much you need to be together, with friends, studying, and pursuing other activities. I do agree that you both need to take advantage of these next few years to the fullest and work towards not being so wrapped up in each other that you miss out on nurturing other valuable friendships.