It Took A While, But I Finally Understand That My Life Isn't Just About My Relationship

It Took A While, But I Finally Understand That My Life Isn't Just About My Relationship

Long distance doesn't mean I have to only think about my boyfriend 24/7.
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Recently I have had a bit of a realization. Throughout my one year relationship, my boyfriend and I have had to be apart for a couple weeks at a time, sometimes a couple of months due to vacations or internship opportunities. During those times, I had a really hard time dealing with the distance. I would be sad and constantly want to talk to him.

If we went a couple days without talking consistently, it would bother me the whole time. My mind was preoccupied and even when I would try to keep busy or hang out with some of my other friends, I would still want to talk about him and the distance a lot.

At this point, even I started to recognize that I was handling the distance poorly. But I didn’t know how else to deal with it; I missed him and because of the time difference or our schedules, talking to him to make myself feel better wasn’t possible. So, for the first couple times that we had to be apart, this is how I would handle it. I would be sad and miss him a lot and honestly be only semi-productive.

Then, something changed.

During this current winter break, my boyfriend and I were apart again due to both of our vacations overlapping. Thus, when I got back from mine, I did what any college kid does on break. I texted all my friends to see when they are free to hang out and started to make plans with all of them. I started reading a book I have been wanting to finish for a while and just spent time relaxing from what was a hectic semester. I even started watching the "Harry Potter" series for the hundredth time!

I found myself relatively busy, but also very happy because I was around people I loved and having a lot of fun. Of course, I still greatly missed my boyfriend and would rather him be here than thousands of miles away in a different time zone.

However, I have finally realized something that may seem fundamental, but took me a while to understand.

I have finally understood that my whole life isn’t just about my relationship.

There is so much more to me and my life then my partnership with my boyfriend.

I know it sounds like the most obvious thing that I have written because most people know this fact, but I think for a lot of people it’s more difficult to actually do. I have written about in previous articles that my parents have had a rough relationship. Thus, I think in the back of my mind I felt that if I didn’t put all my time and energy into my relationship, it may turn out unsuccessful.

However, now I have come to the understanding that a relationship, especially a long distance one needs to be formed with two people who have their own ambitions and goals and ways they find happiness on their own. I am not saying to be selfish but rather to maintain one’s independence and aspirations.

When you know you are going to be okay even if your partner is away, it allows you to be happy and live your best life. This feeling of being okay even if your partner is away can coexist with the feeling of still missing them and wanting them with you. This is one thing that I think took me the longest to fully understood.

I felt that if I was happy and doing my own thing, I was in a way making it seem that I didn’t genuinely miss my partner; which of course was not the case.

I am really proud that I have finally gotten to this place because I find that I am so much less stressed out and happier now that I have begun focusing more on myself. I know not everyone will be able to relate to the sentiment I have expressed in this article, but I hope that if you can relate, you can come to this realization one day too.

It's definitely not easy and takes time, but it can be done!

Cover Image Credit: @couplegoals

Literally, so hot RN

Literally, so hot RN

10 Things My Significant Other MUST Do In Order To Earn The Privilege Of Meeting My Mom

I say "Hakuna Matata" on the daily, but you really need to say it when you prepare to meet my mom.

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Besides getting married, meeting the parents can be the most stressful time in any relationship. Your boyfriend could be freaking out because he doesn't want to sound like a loon in front of your dad or your mom may be chopping the vegetables a little too loudly making your girlfriend seem uncomfortable in the presence of a knife. Stressing for days (maybe even weeks) up until the day arrives is apart of being in love because you want your parents to love your significant other just as much as you do and when the dinner is finally over, you can breathe again. My family is a little different and my boyfriend has to do these things to be able to meet my mom and my brother (may as well add my cousins into the mix, too because they're my older siblings).

1. Pass the "Best Friends Test"

I have 6 best friends and each one of them has a unique personality. There's the momma friend, the crazy friend, the questionable friend, the laid back friend, the turnt friend, and the friend who just wants me to be happy. If they don't like you, I'll talk to them to figure out why they don't like you. Either way, if you hurt me, they'll hurt you.

2. Prove that stability is your main priority five years from now, even if I'm not in your plan

Things happen and we can't predict everything. We can be together now, break up in a year, and then get back together. It's part of being a teenager/young adult. We deal with a lot, I mean, we're in college, but the older we get, the more stressful life gets, so I want you to show me that you can handle whatever stresses come your way. I want you to be stable on your own before adding a girlfriend into the mix.

3. Deal with my "Hunger Fits"

Let's face it, I can be a brat, but I'm only a brat on three occasions.

1. I'm sleepy.

2. You didn't let me get my way.

3. I'm hungry.

If you eat without me or go get food without me, I might cry and pout like a two-year-old, so you have to be able to handle it. Pro-tip, have snacks with you whenever we go somewhere.

4. Be okay with getting roasted

My cousins are the funniest people you'll ever meet, but they aren't afraid to talk about you while you sit in front of them, so I need to know that you're okay with being roasted. They're not doing it to be mean (trust me, they aren't), but they're doing it because they're my family and they care about me as if I were their little sister.

5. Be able to hold an intelligent conversation for more than 5 minutes

Good conversation is an essential part of a relationship and I love talking about things that are happening in the world today and because my mom is super knowledgeable on a lot of things, you have to be able to talk for more than 5 minutes about something that's engaging.

6. Remain calm in the face of a difficult conversation

I know when it came to certain topics, I used to go off like a volcano, but I've had to grow out of exploding on people just because they don't agree with me. It takes months, maybe even years to master that type of patience and self-restraint, but I grew up fast, so I needed to learn in less than a year how to hold my tongue. I need to know that if you and I (or someone in my family) were to be in a serious conversation, you'd remain calm. I won't blow up on you, so please don't blow up on me (or my family) because then it might not end so well.

7. State your opinion, no matter how mad I might get

Following up with number six, this is a must! I'm a writer, so I deal with a lot of written opinions on the daily. I'm also involved in a lot of organizations where open dialogue is encouraged, so I deal with a lot of verbal opinions, too. People are going to say what they want to say no matter what and I want you to be able to tell me what's on your mind no matter how severe it may be. I'm here for you and I want you to know that you can trust me with your opinions. I might not agree with them, but I can deal with them.

8. Be able to sit and talk about sports and video games with my brother

You'll for sure meet my older brother before you meet my mom only because he acts just like my late grandfather; calm and laid back. He goes with the flow and doesn't get upset unless I get upset, so you don't have to worry about the big bad overprotective brother (but he is very big and very overprotective). He'd much rather sit and talk about "fork-knife" or a basketball game than grill you. It's just how he is. Also, don't be offended if he engages in conversation with you for like ten minutes before he loses interest in talking to you and goes back to playing his game.

9. Be okay and open to the possibility of a long distance relationship

I don't plan on staying down South for long. I actually won't stay here after I graduate from college. Long distance relationships don't work for 40% of all couples, but I want us to not be a statistic. I believe that we could make it, so I would need to know that you'd be okay with me being a thousand miles away; and of course, if you were halfway across the country, I would learn to be okay with it, too.

10. Love your family as much as you love me

Family is a big deal for me. It's always been me, my older brother, and my mom. You may come from a household where it's you and both of your parents, you and one parent, or you, your parent(s), and your siblings. I love my mom and brother with all of my heart and would drop anything (and I have dropped things) to be with them. I want to see that you love your family with the same amount of love that you give me. A man who loves the family he is born into will love the family he marries into.

My family's triangle has never been broken before, so this is new territory for all of us. Don't feel like an outsider, though! These may seem extensive and extra, but it's the things that matter to me. Aside from the apparent trustworthiness, loyalty, wanting three pets, having a sense of humor, and education that I look for in a guy, you have to do these ten things to meet my mom.

If you pass all of these, then you get to meet her. Don't stress about it though because if she doesn't like you at the first meeting, she'll come around by the next because she loves me and she'll see that I love you.

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To The Parents Who Raised The Man Of My Dreams, It Paid Off

You did a phenomenal job.

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As a parent, you always wonder if you're doing it right. Parenting doesn't come with instructions. You're not told how to punish your children in every situation or what to do whenever they accomplish something. You're not completely prepared for it. However, for someone without instructions, you did a phenomenal job.

You raised the man of my dreams.

I've dated throughout my teens and every guy seemed to be the same, but with your son everything was different. Your son is everything I've ever wanted. He is perfect. He is such a gentleman. I want you to know everything you taught him like holding the door and paying for dates, it worked.

I want you to know he doesn't show anger towards me. I'm sure I aggravate him and make him angry, but I want you to know I'll never know when I've done so because he doesn't show it. He gets mad with football games and after he gets done yelling, he apologizes.

He makes me feel beautiful. He has seen me at my absolute worse. He has seen me right when I wake up in the morning with no makeup and my hair is a mess and he tells me I'm beautiful. Whenever so get dressed up, he notices. He makes sure to let me know I look beautiful. He pays attention to detail like that my hair is curled or I have a new nose ring in and he adds them in with the compliments.

He is always supportive. Whenever I started back to school, he was so proud of me. When I started writing for The Odyssey, he shared my articles. He will tell me how proud he is of me. When I make good grades on assignments, he tells me good job.

He is so loving. He comforts me whenever I'm sick. When I had the stomach bug, he got my medicine, trashcans, and played with my hair to comfort me. He brushes and straightens my hair for me whenever I don't feel like it because he wants it to look good.

Thanks to you I have found someone who treats me wonderful. If it wasn't for you, he wouldn't know how to treat a lady. It is because of you that he turned out to be nice and respectful man he is today. I want you to know you did an amazing job raising him. He's everything I've ever wanted. Thank you for raising him to be such a gentleman. Thank you for raising him to be everything I've ever dreamed of.

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