Feeling a bit lost, advice desperately needed :(

posted 3 years ago in Relationships
Post # 3
Member
1243 posts
Bumble bee

@oriskany:  I firmly believe that a healthy relationship supports your dreams instead of sacrificing them. 40 years from now you need to be able to reflect back on your life and feel good about what you accomplished. For some people, raising well adjusted children is enough. For others, having a big house and fat bank account is enough. And for others, making a positive impact on their world is what they need.

You are young. It seems like it’s too early for you to give up on your aspirations and dreams to me. There will be other men you meet and fall head over heels in love with and can’t imagine life without, trust me on this. If you can’t find a compromise with your current partner that allows you to fulfill even some of your goals, and you are physically  ill at the thought of that, then you know in your heart what you need to do. Don’t do it because you’re afraid of letting your profs down, or your family. Do it because you don’t want to let the only person in the world who really matters down: you.

At the end of the day, there is only one person you can count on to always look out for you, make you happy, and have your back, and that’s you. Follow your heart and follow your dreams.

 

Post # 4
Member
3557 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

Ok, my advice:

Step 1. Get your depression and anxiety under control.

You are an undergrad, your college should have mental health resources for you to access. I too have depression and anxiety and medication has done wonders for me. I don’t know if you have tried meds, but you can get them from just about any general practicioner who’s fees are usually much lower than those of a therapist.

Step 2. Make a list of all of the dreams you would try to achieve if he were not in your life.

Is there any way for you to achieve some of these dreams with your boyfriend? What about going on one of those volunteer trips together where you go to a poorer country and build homes or dig wells?

Step 3. Talk to your boyfriend.

You need to sit down with your boyfriend and explain to him the depth of your conflicted feelings. He needs to know how you feel about giving up your dreams to be with him. He also needs to know how you feel about a lack of concrete commitment before giving up your dreams. If he truly loves you he will find a way to compromise with you to achieve some of your dreams. 

I have a friend who went through a similar kind of crisis in his life. He was very serious with his girlfriend, and he was moving out of state to attend graduate school. She demanded a concrete commitment before moving out of state to be with him. He was not ready to propose before he moved in August, but promised her a ring by Christmas. This compromise was not acceptable to her and she flew off the handle and accused him of all sorts of untrue things. It rocked their relationship badly and he ended up breaking up with her before moving because she lied to him and about him. The break up was really hard on both of them, but they are both dong well now. He is almost done with is masters and her photography business has really taken off. They loved each other, but their life dreams and plans were not compatible.

Love is not enough to maintain a relationship. Both parties need to feel fulfilled in life. If you make all of these sacrifices to be with your boyfriend will it make you resent him down the road? Will those feelings of resentment poison your relationship? These are things I think you need to decide for yourself and discuss with your boyfriend.

Post # 6
Member
6812 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2014

If you don’t follow your dreams, you will likely regret it and resent him for it. Follow your heart, what is it telling you to do? If he loves you, he should support you through it.

Post # 7
Member
7997 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2013

I think you shouldn’t be the only one compromising. Could you go to grad school and not go into the Peace Corps? Why do you need to be a SAHM?

This seems unsustainable to me. You’re already resenting him… you need to do something about it now.

 

Post # 8
Member
2878 posts
Sugar bee

One thing I always promised myself was never to give up my goals (and one of them was college) for a man. I knew when I met my ex that I was most likely going to do a master’s degree, and I expected him to support me while I did it, which he did. And I even told him from the start : if one day I have to choose between you or college, college wins. 

What lead to our separation was the fact that over time (we’ve been together from age 16 to 25), I had other goals I wished to achieve (own a house, travel, etc.) and I felt I was the only one carrying everything over my shoulders. He didn’t seem that interested, and it was almost a taboo in our conversation because he had anxiety over projects like that. I realized we were going nowhere and I decided to end the relationship – not because I did not love him anymore, not because he was a bad person, but because we didn’t share the same goals and it had been the case for years. What I did by quitting the relationship, was giving myself the opportunity to keep going according to what I wanted in my life.

And after that, I met FI who’s also very supportive, but who also shares the same goals as me. This changes everything from my previous relationship.

Not going to school, it doesn’t matter that much what your family or teachers think. But it’s yourself you feel you’re failing right now. And that is not good at all, and is not what a healthy relationship is supposed to be.

Don’t make that mistake, please don’t sacrifice everything and who you are and want to be, for a man. 

Post # 10
Member
2419 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

You are far too young to put your hopes and aspirations behind you. OK, I can understand that the Peace Corps might put unnecessary strain on your relationship and in itself, while a great dream, is not something that will actually set you back so far as your career prospects are concerned.

But to give up grad school is just plain wrong. Even if you do end up being a SAHM – and with respect, right now you don’t even know if you can have children – this won’t take up the rest of your life and on your quoted timeline, you’ll have years and years of work ahead of you when your children have been raised. You won’t want to spend them confined to working at a much lower level than necessary. 

Life is for living. Not for denying yourself your perfectly reasonable aspirations. 

Post # 11
Member
579 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2011

@oriskany:  Hi

I’m 23, I got married at 21 just before I turned 22. My dh is 4 years older than me and we’ve been together since I was 19. I am currently doing my masters, i got lucky I am being paid a small amount to do it- basically if I were single it’d just cover my living expenses, medical aid etc. That being said, my husband is super supportive, he was retrenched just before I started and we had to move across country for my job(study), thankfully he sort of had a job lined up here already, but we had the discussion about if I hadn’t had to move for work, and he said he would have found a job near me wherever that was. He issupportive of my will to study further, when I’m having a “I can’t do this’ day, he is the one who tells me I can, who stands behind me who supports me. He has more faith in me than I do.

It scares me that he expects you to be a SAHM in 5 years, my dh although 4 years older is fully supportive of us waiting to have kids so I can finish my Masters and hopefully a PhD. He would never expect me to be a SAHM, hell my dh jokes about being a stay at home dad although we both know he’ll probably always earn more than me…  I don’t think you should have to sacrifice all your dreams, I can understand not doing the peace corps, but to give up your further education, I couldn’t do that and my dh supports me in that.

Have a frank discussion with him, explain you want to do your masters and if you don’t want to be a full time SAHM tell him that. Maybe discuss the possibility of you working half days and explain why you feel you need your masters for that. Sorry about the essay but I wanted you to see that SOs should be supportive not making decisions for you

 

Post # 12
Member
5839 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: October 2010

@oriskany:  How would you feel if you gave up all  your dreams and he left you 1 year from now? 5 years? 10 years and 2 kids from now? 20 years? 30 years? 40 years?

There is a 50% chance that you will not make it forever (and if you marry in the next few years, even higher chance). I have known so many women who gave up their dreams and ambitions for a guy and very much regreted it. I have never known a woman to regret giving up a good guy for her dreams. Either the good guy comes back into her life once she has acheived some goals OR she finds a great guy that better aligns with her goals. 

Post # 13
Member
2330 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

You may have already explained this in your text so apologies for asking it again….but why exactly do you have to give up your dream of going to grad school? You may have said something about being a SAHM, which I cannot work out if that is YOUR dream, HIS dream, or your dream together. At the moment, you are not a SAHM and I don’t think you can live your life as though you are  

 

On the other hand, people’s dreams and aspirations change but that does not mean that they have suddenly become a disappointment – when I was growing up I had a different view for my life…but I love the life I have. I have no regrets for the most part. 

 

To be honest, and I am not saying that you should leave him or anything, but if your dream is to go to graduate school then maybe that is a dream to do by yourself – I don’t think it would make a difference if you were with him or someone else, priorities change in a serious relationship – nothing wrong with that. You’ve just got to decide which is more important. Hopefully you can do both. 

Post # 14
Member
2665 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

Well, my feelings on things like this is this: education and degrees last forever. Relationships may not, and men will come and go.

Post # 15
Member
5839 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: October 2010

@imalittlebirdie:  That is what I was trying to say, but you said it so much better!

Post # 16
Member
216 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

@FromA2B2013:  +1

@oriskany:  I also wonder, from your post, whether being a SAHM is a shared goal or not. Also, I wonder why it would not be possible for you to attend grad school once your partner is finished? Student loans can be heavy, but it sounds like you would greatly increase your earning potential. 

I think if you are already regretting opportunities you might not pursue in the future, you will only regret those things even more down the road. And those regrets could create significant problems between you and your partner.

To share my personal experience – DH and I began dating when we were 18. Since high school, my goal has been to earn a PhD. After we finished our undergrad degrees, I decided to pursue grad school in another province. While I worried about the consequences for our relationship, I knew I wouldn’t be happy if I didn’t pursue my long-term goals. I left it up to my then-BF to decide whether or not he wanted to move with me. He chose to come along. While I sometimes feel responsible for his happiness here (and GREATLY appreciate the sacrifices he’s made), we are each responsible for making decisions in our lives and for working toward the kind of futures we desire. Whether two people can do that together or need to go their separate ways is something to be negotiated. While my education decisions have at times put strain on our relationship, witnessing the lengths my partner has gone to support my goals has greatly increased my love for him and my willingness to support him in the same way. While he is not happy with his career at present, he is considering returning to school after I am finished. 

It sounds like you and your partner need to have further in-depth conversations about your goals. It may be the case that he thinks you’re happy with the plans that have been set and will be willing to change them when he understands how much you feel you’re giving up. Or perhaps he will be fixed on the plans discussed. In that case, you may both need to consider whether the relationship is a fit long-term. 

Considering the intense emotions you seem to be feeling regarding your future, though, these conversations seem like an important next step. Good luck and take care!

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