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Long-distance relationships at uni, the reality

11th February 2016

Long-distance relationships are attempted at university by many couples…

Plenty of people go to university with a girlfriend or boyfriend, mistakenly convinced that their long-term relationship will work out. Some couples even go to the extremes of picking the same university together because it’s definitely going to work out! You’ve been together for years and you totally have a unique connection. Maybe you would even go so far as to describe yourself as ‘soul mates’

*Spoiler alert – prepare for the reality of long-distance relationships*

Worried Teenage Girl In Bedroom With BoyfriendI can’t believe I had to use the term ‘soul mates’. There’s nothing like university to do away with all that wishy-washy talk and check you in to reality. I mean, come on, it’s embarrassing. Want to know what really happens to couples at university? Read ahead.

Long-distance relationships make you paranoid

Chances are, your other half is also going to university that year. While enjoying Freshers Week yourself, you’ll notice just how flirty everybody gets when they have their own room to return to.  Are they going alone? Are you? Freshers is a cheeky time. You might think it will be a small bump down Lovers Lane, but every Fresher survivor will tell you it’s actually a sinkhole and you’re headed straight for it.

Long-distance relationships are for grownups

You might feel like an adult and like you’re in something serious, but you aren’t and it isn’t. Any relationship with someone who still lives with his/her parents (regardless of its duration) is puppy love and not even worth mentioning at university. When being responsible and taking care of your interests becomes a natural part of who you are, then come back and we’ll talk life.

Long-distance relationships never work out

Everyone knows that long-distance relationships don’t work, but still people think that their situation is different. Sorry to burst your bubble, but long-distance relationships never work out. Facebook may not show the strains on your relationship, but at least one of you is buckling under the pressure. If you’re not, that isn’t necessarily a good thing. Pay attention to who is making all the phone calls and keeping tabs on the last time you two spoke together. If your significant other isn’t making any effort, I’m sorry, but they’ve lost interest. They’re just ‘too nice’ to tell you.

I’ll use my first-year residence hall as an example. In our hall of 12 people, half were in long-distance relationships (names and sports have been changed for confidentiality):

  • John and his lovely girlfriend were already on the rocks from Day 1. Someone had lost interest, but they still carried it on and off for a month until it finally ended.
  • Shane played football and the girls loved him for it. Needless to say, the first night of Freshers was enough for Shane to realise his newfound appeal. Despite clinging on to his two-year relationship back home, Shane declared himself out after strike three.
  • Jake spent his entire time on Skype with his girlfriend, even avoiding nights out with his football team. She turned 18, and well, that was that.
  • Rachel had even moved to England to be near her boyfriend. He got too desperate with her at university and scared her off with a fake proposal. Consequently, he was dumped. Afterward, Rachel enjoyed university more – a lot more.
  • Tom had a perfect 10, although he was more economical about things. He traded his Ferrari for the equivalent value in Ford Escorts.
  • Adrian left his girlfriend back home for the university life. In the first weeks of university, Adrian found his talent for selling tickets to clubs. He also found that “with great power comes great responsibility”. Too bad Adrian wasn’t about the responsibility part and has since moved on… and on… and on.

End long-distance relationships before they start

Why am I so pessimistic? You probably think I got dumped and I’m just bitter. Well, sorry to burst your bubble, but no. It’s actually the opposite. I was the evil witch who couldn’t call it quits in time.

Do yourself a favour, if you’re off to university, book some time off at the end of August to nip your long-distance relationship in the bud. At the beginning of July, tell your other half the bad news. Then take some time to get over it by booking a holiday with the guys or girls. Really get into the university spirit and flush those final love toxins out. You’re on to the next chapter of your life. You can drag the weight back home with you or get the inevitable over now and save yourself the hassle. Load up on Jonnies – you’re in for the ride of your life and you can rest easy knowing your other half is too.

Happy crowd waving hands and sheering at the music concert

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