I went into college with my boyfriend of one year and the idea that I was not going to go through recruitment and that he was not anywhere near being a frat guy.
That's what I thought.
What you think isn't always reality though. On one of the first nights on campus, the whole school had a party and of course, the fraternity and sorority members were out and about prowling for new members.
While I clung tight to my two new roommates, who were actually going through recruitment, my boyfriend decided to hang out with his roommate and talk with his fraternity brothers.
In one night I went from having a happy relationship to thinking I was going to lose my boyfriend to his new fraternity. I didn't know that he was interested in fraternities—he had never said anything about it before then on a dime decided to sign a bid.
I was mad. I was upset and I was hurt. I facing the idea that this "thing," his new fraternity, was going to destroy the best relationship in my life and leave me at college with no one. I was lost. I had no idea that he would turn on me like that or not think to share such an idea as big as joining Greek life with me.
I was so upset that I called my mom and begged to go through recruitment because I thought that would bring me closer to him and then we could stay together.
Needless to say, it was a very last minute decision since the recruitment application was due in maybe two hours so she said no. My dad caught wind of it and even offered to drive back to come to get me. This was a big issue and it was so hard to watch my boyfriend not understand why.
I wanted to be a supportive girlfriend so I just stood by and watched him meet his soon-to-be brothers, I watched him go to rush events and I watched him sign his bid. I watched him live this whole other life without me.
I had searched and searched online things like "Will my boyfriend leave me when he joins a fraternity," "do relationships last when he's in Greek life and you are not" and so many others I cannot remember.
The internet was riddled with dated, horrible advice about breaking up. They all said that your relationship won't last because he will be at parties with other girls, he has brothers now and that will matter more, I even saw things posted by girls about their long-term boyfriends who left them after they went Greek.
The worst thing I saw was a post that said: "if he winds up cheating, don't bother asking his brothers or hoping they will stand up and tell you because they are his brothers first and they won't even try to tell you."
That dug deep and it really hurt, I still think about it to this day.
You came here for an answer though, and here it is—you will be fine. When I said he lived a life without me, that was all in my head. In reality, his brothers invited me to their lunch with him when he signed his bid, I was there to see him sign it and take pictures and I was there for parties.
I was there when he ran for exec in his chapter and I was there for his sporting events. He was there for me too. At the time, I acted cold to him because I thought that would make the breakup easier when in turn, it made it seem like I was breaking up with him which worried him. We had a talk and found out we were expecting the worst from the other and obviously, we didn't want that.
Over these three years that he has been a member I have watched him grow and flourish into such an amazing man and I am so proud.
I have also become good friends with a number of his brothers and their girlfriends. He made sure that not only he had a home in his letters, but so did I. I know my story isn't what always happens, but we cared so deeply for one another and wanted the best that a talk or two later we are still here almost four years later and hopefully many more (knock on wood).
I bought a custom shirt with his letters on it for my birthday and I buy so much gear with his letters it is crazy, especially since I have my own. I wore his letters before I knew what it meant to have letters of my own and I always find pride in wearing them. Oh, and one other thing, I was there when his chapter was chartered. It was such a huge accomplishment and I got to be there for it.
He may go Greek, you may go Greek, you both might, it doesn't matter. If you care enough and are willing to work it out, your relationship will be waiting for you on the other side.