I know from experience that the transition from high school to college can be a challenge for relationships. If one of you is going out of state for college, staying in contact and remaining close will be especially difficult.
My girlfriend and I went to high school together in California. I applied to colleges all around the country, and eventually selected Northeastern University in Boston. We dated long-distance for a few months, but we eventually decided to end the relationship.
Deciding to go into a long-distance relationship was a big decision for both of us. It changed my entire experience of college in the beginning. Here are a few things you’ll certainly want to discuss with your significant other as you transition into your new life at college.
1. College Is A Time To Explore
Staying close with family and friends from high school is important but college is a unique opportunity to learn more about yourself. Once away from old friends and the usual daily environment, many people try activities and make friends they would never have expected at home.
Your intimate relationship from high school was probably a beautiful experience, but you’ll want to make sure it’s not an anchor that takes away from the freedom during college. Yes, college is a great time to explore other intimate relationships, but that’s not the only way a relationship from home changes your college experience.
Will your significant other become jealous when you tell them that you went to a college party? Will he/she disapprove of you partaking in some new college activity? If the answer to either of these questions is “yes,” make sure you at least try to agree on some expectations before you leave.
2. Travel Time Between Schools
My college was a five-hour plane ride across the country from my high school.
Hanging out with my girlfriend for the weekend would have been an extremely expensive date!
Because of the distance, just about the only time we were able to meet in person was over the holidays and during summer vacation. Even when my girlfriend started college a year later and went to school in Maine, the distance still required a full day on the bus.
You need to decide if you’re comfortable taking these journeys every time you have a long weekend.
Trips like this can also be expensive, and you’ve got to add costs into your plans. If you’re working a $8-per-hour campus job and need to pay your own expenses, you may not be able to take these trips even when you have the time.
3. College Is A Busy, Busy Four Years
When you’re in a long distance relationship, staying close typically involves making time to call and Skype.
And it’s hard to make time throughout the week to stay in contact with your distant significant other.
When you get to college you will be flooded with awesome opportunities and ways to spend your time. There are clubs for almost every interest, so many new people to meet, and an entirely new city/town to explore.
In addition to fun activities, you’ll also have more schoolwork than you’re used to in high school. College courses really do require a weekly commitment to do well.
With all the fun and all the work of college dominating your time, you would be surprised how challenging scheduling Skype time with your significant other can be. Try to be realistic about this commitment before deciding to take on a long-distance relationship.