My boyfriend and I met on a high school trip and have been together for 3 years.
I am 19-years old and a freshman in college. He is 20-years old and in Job Corps. For all three years our relationship there has been distance. But, we manage to see each other every other weekend. Sometimes we’re lucky enough to spend nights or a whole week together.
I loved him ever since the day we met. It was the most incredible feeling I ever felt and he didn’t waste time in telling me that he felt the same. Two days in the relationship we were madly in love. Long talks for hours on the phone, the constant messages, and we couldn’t keep our hands off he each other in person. We had our ups and downs such as him cheating on me and I have cheated on him. We have broken up at least twice, but got back together because we can’t stand being without one another.
Now we are talking about our future together, and he has proposed, but it will not be official until we see each other and he gives me my ring. I know this may seem great, but I’m not sure if marriage is right for us right now. For the past few months we have been arguing more and we don’t communicate unless we are arguing. Right now he is 5 hours away from me and when we talk on the phone it is dead silence. He has nothing to say and neither do I. However, when either one of us say something it somehow turns into an argument. We could have a conversation about the sky being blue and it would turn into an argument about cows producing milk.
We have said many things to each other that end in nights of me crying myself to sleep. This is hurting me and our relationship. We are at the point where we text each other good morning and goodnight without talking through the day. I know he’s hurting because his friends are messaging me because they are concerned about him not acting the same. I am not the same either. I’m hurt and tired of our roller coaster, but I love him so much. I don’t know if I can bare to lose him. What do I do?
I forgot to add how my family adores him and his family adores me as well. And when we are together it seems as if our troubles go away. I feel so perfect when we are together. But, when he is away, everything goes downhill as soon as he leaves. – Miss Heartbroken
Dear Miss Heartbroken,
Honey, this is nothing but young love. And, like you mentioned, it feels good in the beginning, things are wonderful, you can’t wait to see one another, you can’t keep your hands off each other, and you don’t want to be apart. I get it. I know how both of you feel. However, there is a dynamic in play that is wearing on both of you and it is the distance. Being 5 hours apart, and especially with him being in Job Corp, well, that will pose a challenge. And, I know that for those in Job Corps there is a commitment for participants to be there.
The arguments can be due to the stress of the distance, and the fact that both of you have other things going on outside of your relationship. You have homework, papers, and studying for exams. He has his commitments in Job Corps, performance, working on finding a job, and other rigors of his program. With all of this going on neither of you are probably sharing the rigors of these programs, and neither of you understands how difficult it is for each other. Then, you compound all of this on top of a relationship with distance, then, he may feel neglected, alone, and that you don’t understand him. Just as you may feel neglected, alone, and that he doesn’t understand you.
So, this is where you become stronger. You build one another, and you encourage one another. You uplift each other, and keep reminding one another of the reasons why you fell in love. You have to communicate what’s going on with your lives, and share more about your programs. Share the demands and commitments you have. Share how it makes you feel anxious, stressed, or challenged. Tell him you need support from him mentally and emotionally. And, he has to do the same thing. It’s called communication and talking with one another.
Besides, if you can manage this temporary distance in your relationship, then you’ll be able to manage much larger issues and challenges in the future. And, trust me when I tell you this, it will get rougher, harder, and even more difficult as you go along in your relationship. But, you’re young, and have time to grow into it.
With this distance between you, there are some things you can do to be creative to maintain your love. Yes, you have to be creative with your affections and emotions. You have to keep the flame burning, and do not let it burn out because you’re not together.
I suggest sending one another care packages. Take the time to create little love packages of your favorite things, and special moments when you spend time together. Do a picture collage, or love poem, and maybe even a letter. Yes, we live in an era of digital technology, and folks love texting and talking on the phone. But, sometimes you have to be a little more creative and add more to the relationships. This may require being old school, (which you may not know nothing about since you’re so young and all you know is technology). LOL!
Now, I am concerned, just as you are that marriage may not be the best thing right now. I think him proposing and you both wanting to get married is a whimsical decision. I strongly feel this was a decision made because of the distance between you and he feels as if he is losing you. Just like you feel you may be losing him, and that while you’re apart the conversations are filled with silence, and you don’t communicate throughout the day only via text. He is feeling the same, and that you may be preoccupied with some other guy. Just as you may feel he is preoccupied with another girl.
Besides, you mentioned the proposal will not be official until you see one another and he gives you a ring. So, this tells me that he proposed over the phone, and you were so excited that you said yes. SMDH! Slow your roll and keep dating. Things are definitely going to change in your relationship once he comes home, and you’ve both grown during this time. It’s cute because he’s away, and you know where he is. But, when he comes home, and has more freedom, then you how will you handle not knowing where he is? How will you both handle a busy life as he looks for a job when he comes home, or has to work and you’re focused on school and studying.
This brings up another concern for me. Why are you not focused on your school studies? I get that you are in love, but you should be keeping up with your college program, earning the grades and remaining focused on your studies. Marriage is premature right now. I’m not discouraging you dating and maintaining your relationship, but marriage is a serious commitment. And, if you’re having difficulty now in your relationship, then marriage will only complicate things.
And, when you do decide to move forward with marriage, and I hope it’s after you’ve completed college, and he’s working and has full-time employment, then, please consider pre-marital counseling. You have to address all your concerns, issues, and challenges and work out any of them before you decide to become husband and wife.
Don’t be in despair. This is just the trials and tribulations of relationships. They go up, and they go down. But, it’s the growing together, and being there for one another in the highs and lows that matters. It’s being creative and fresh in maintaining the love you have for one another. This is a temporary low. Trust me, when he is out of the program and back home it will be a ride up on high. You’ll make it through. Just remain supportive and encouraging of one another. – Terrance Dean
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