I was a very independent person before I ended up in a committed relationship. I still am, though, more in an individualistic sense rather than in the sense of being alone. My boyfriend and I are very different from each other and that is something we embrace within our relationship. Something I've realized about myself as a significant other is that I can be very clingy. I like to be around my boyfriend a lot, mainly because he is the person who understands me the most. I also have trouble being alone with my thoughts—something I have been trying to work on for the past couple of months.

My boyfriend is different from me in that sense. He needs alone time to be with himself, to do stuff he feels he can't do if I am around. He likes solitude. At first, this was a reoccurring issue in our relationship, but after having the same conversation one too many times, I decided to take a step back and realize that this issue is less of a problem between me and him, and more of a problem that I needed to address within myself. I needed to learn that solitude does not equal loneliness. My boyfriend has taught me, without the intention of teaching me anything, that being alone is actually good for my mental health.

Having alone time in a relationship is extremely essential. I still struggle with it, but I make sure to ask my boyfriend from time to time if he needs more time to himself, especially when I realize periods of time where we are together for long amounts of time. I wouldn't call him my other half, only because I am whole with or without him, but I would say he is someone I could spend days on end with. With that being said, doing this is a great way to lose yourself in a relationship. Sometimes I lose my sense of self if I am with him for too long because I am not being the individual that I need to be.

Also, learning how to deal with my racing thoughts when I am alone is a much healthier tactic than trying to run from them by spending more time with my boyfriend. I have struggled with mental health issues since I was 14-years-old and I've gone to therapy for it, but sometimes I am not proactive in the way that I cope with my mental health. I need to embrace my racing thoughts, write them out, allow them to surface rather than pushing them away and ignoring that they exist in the first place.

Although I have accommodated to my boyfriend's need for solitude, he has also accommodated for my want to be with him a lot. I have made sure to check in from time to time to make sure that I am giving my boyfriend the space that he needs and he makes sure to stay in contact with me even when I am not with him. My boyfriend has been there for me through everything, as well. His support is something I am so grateful for, and although he may not intentionally do so, he has taught me many things about learning how to be alone without feeling lonely.