High school sweetheart dilemma– advice?

So, my boyfriend and I have been dating since freshman year, but we’re going off to college next fall, and I want to hear people’s opinions on college (my actual questions are at the bottom):

Some background, academically: We’re both applying to pretty prestigious universities, him for engineering, me for biology or education. We both have high aspirations for our future; neither of us wants to hold the other back from getting the best education possible, & this means we’re moving apart, as much as we hate it.

Some background, relationship-ly: He is my best friend. We can talk about anything, always, and because of this we almost never fightó we’re just always on the same team. Things have always been simple and down-to-earth with him, and I love who I am around him. We’re happy around each otheró we go to the same school and we still hang out almost every weekend. I know he’s got my back and I’ve never once worried about us breaking upó we’re inseparable best friends, and I don’t want to lose him. He makes me smile, he’s gotten me interested in things I’ve never dreamed of being interested in, and he gets along with my mom and sister like a member of the family. He and I spend a LOT of time together– we have the same friends, go to the same social events, and do many things as a pair (although we do have our own extracurriculars).

That being said, I’ve heard that it’s naÔve to think that we’ll “be together forever”. I’ve heard it said that I’ll miss out on a lot of the “college experience” if I have a high school sweetheart at home, and that one can’t have a mature relationship at our age because we’re simply too young.

Now, we talk about everything, so I know that if either of us was feeling trapped, we’d be able to talk about it and figure out a solution. Neither of us is particularly jealous or possessive in general, but we are very attached to one another.

I think I’m rambling… anyway, my final questions: Is it possible that I’ve met somebody worth staying with at my age? Do you have any advice for long-distance relationships? Or– and you can be blunt– am I being lovestruck/ having cloudy judgement/ over-romanticizing this?

Help me, adults in the real world!

9 thoughts on “High school sweetheart dilemma– advice?

  1. DavidIsGreat says:

    [Keep your options open. Don’t make the decision one way or another right now.

    somebody is going to tell you it’s not possible to stay together with a high school sweetheart but before they do I’m going to say it’s possible, but sorta improbable. I’ve seen couples married since high school, it happens sometimes.

    You might not stay together, be realistic about this. But life is a long time, things happen, your paths can cross again or you’ll each find love elsewhere and what you had will help you in every relationship that follows.

  2. Jasmine says:

    [There are a lot of answers to your question(s)
    Yes, you are young. Yes, people change a lot between 18 and 25. Yes, long distance relationships take a lot of work, patience and communication.
    I am still friends with people I was close to in high school. We wrote letters (yes, it’s been that long since I was in college) and spent summers hanging out and grew up together across the country from each other. These weren’t romantic relationships, but it sounds to me like you have a strong friendship with your bf. I hope you two at least stay friends and in contact (write postcards at least- way more fun to get mail at your dorm than just keeping in touch on Facebook!)
    Once you both know where you are going to college and how far away you will be from each other you can have “the talk.” Do you even know what your bf wants? That’s going to determine how you go forward more than any advice we give you here!

  3. EricaSwagger says:

    [First of all, yes — it IS entirely possible that you’ve already met the person that is everything you want and need. Of course it’s possible.

    Just based on your writing I can tell you’re a smart person and that these questions are not coming from a nervous or negative place, but from a realistic view of how things work in the real world.

    You’re right to wonder if it’s a good idea to try and stay together. In general, it doesn’t work out. That’s just in general. Long distance is really tough, and it’s tougher for younger people who are wondering what else is out there. I’ve had this problem so I know — when harmless wondering turns into serious desire to know. That’s when people get hurt.

    If you and your boyfriend feel comfortable trying to stay together, then for now you should do it. There’s no point in ruining something that’s working. Until the thought crosses your mind that you’d like to be a little more free. And that thought will cross your mind. There is a lot of stuff to experience in college. Being in an LDR can really put a damper on things.

    Two things can happen. You’ll stay together, or you’ll break up. That’s it. The break up might be long overdue after years of resenting each other, or it might happen 3 weeks into your freshman year when you meet someone infatuating at a party. You just have to be honest about your feelings.

    There’s a third option that I don’t recommend because it just leads to a break up anyway. But a lot of friends of mine who were in relationships had/have a policy where they basically are “together” while they’re home on school breaks and summer vacation, but while they’re at school they’re basically single. It’s like downgrading your relationship to friend status, so you get the best of both worlds. Usually it doesn’t end 4 years later with both parties moving home and picking up where they left off.

    And if you decide to stay together and do the LDR thing and it all works out, then great. That’s a win.

  4. Solstice says:

    [Why not give it a try? If it doesn’t work out, then it doesn’t – but you clearly care about each other and have a great time together. If you end up being long distance and it’s too much to handle, you can end it then. Try not to worry about things until issues actually start happening. Until then, enjoy your relationship!

  5. Dennis Hong says:

    [I think this is a question only you and your boyfriend can decide. Hopefully, you’ll decide it mutually.

    I know people who married their high school sweetheart and, 20 years later, are still the loves of each other’s lives.

    I also know people who married their high school sweetheart and were divorced by the time they were 21.

    This is just one of those questions where you’ll never be able to find a convincing answer one way or another. To that end, the best you can do is to keep open your lines of communication (which you two seem to be great at), promise each other that you’ll be honest about your feelings and what you want from each other once you both go off to college, and… welp, go from there.

    Good luck at college! I studied both biology and education, so… Awesome choices!

  6. karlos says:

    [There’s no reason at all you can’t be together. The best advice I can give comes straight from “The Sims” relationships are like houseplants, if you leave them alone, they can wither and die. However, some people keep cacti, which can go without attention and still flower.

    I guess what I’m trying to say is, does your boyfriend look like a cactus?

  7. resullins says:

    [First of all, there are no “real adults” here. You may have to look elsewhere for those!

    Now, that being said. The chances that you’ve met your end-all-be-all at 18 are slim, but it’s not impossible. So I’m going to echo what David said: keep your options open, don’t decide. Go off to college (and now that you know about Dennis, you may consider changes majors), have fun, make friends, and don’t EVER feel like you’re tied down.

    If you happen to meet someone else, or you feel like you need your freedom, don’t beat yourself up over it. Let yourself experience life, but don’t necessarily rule out your boy at the outset either.

  8. Maracuya says:

    [I think it’s totally possible and I hate for people to say, “You’re young! You don’t know what love is!”
    You’re more likely to break up, but only because young people grow and change a lot during college. I would just keep an open mind to your feelings. Some people don’t have as hard a time doing long-distance but it will be significantly more difficult if you both decide to get post-graduate degrees or go to med school, etc. If you’re happy, enjoy the time you have with each other and don’t get too hung up on him. You sound like a you’ve got a good head on your shoulders, though. I think you’ll be fine.

  9. Happy Pants says:

    [I’m pretty sure that at 17 or 18, you’ve had a more mature, long-lasting relationship than I’ve had at 27, so congrats on that. Clearly you’re more of an adult than I am.

    That said, I can’t offer any advice that hasn’t already been given (it’s possible, improbable, romanticized, but a nice idea, and will depend on your communication, etc.), but I CAN commend you on your educational choices and impeccable spelling, as well as your use of em dashes. I do love a good em dash!

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