Post # 1
My FI proposed last month and I said yes happily. We have been together over three and a half years and it feels like the next natural step. It will be a long engagement as we want a house first (two years) then the wedding.
I’m 21, 22 in November and freshly graduated. My FI is 31. I got a job quite quickly before I graduated but what I get paid is no where near enough what I need to earn to get a mortgage with him due to nearby house prices, so I’m looking to get onto a graduate scheme. Ideally I would like to get a job nearby but there is a high possibility I may have to move, with the view of moving back once I get my qualifications on the job and complete the scheme making myself able to move.
When I bought up this possibility my FI was not really supportive as I may have to move away, and kept referring to my job now and look to get promoted there. This is highly unlikely as to move up the person above you has to leave etc. A graduate scheme is the best way to get a good job quickly with excellent career prospects.
I’m now starting to feel limited in what I can do, and I’m wondering if I did the right thing getting engaged. I’m young and newly graduated and I want to establish a career using the degree I worked for 3 years for, but I’m constantly thinking I can’t accept something far away because of my FI and his job here.
I’m just feeling so stuck bees. I can’t explain this feeling to my FI because I know it will just cause a fight. I need some other opinions on what you would do in my situation.
Obviously I’m not aiming to move away, but if I was offered something amazing I would want to take it. I acknowledge it would be tough not living together but we would have weekends and holidays and the major future plans would be delayed until I get back.
He just doesn’t seem to understand I need to consider the possibility of moving to further my career so we CAN have our future with a house and kids because where I am now (job) it’s basically impossible…
Post # 2
I’m sorry but if you can’t discuss future plans with your fiance, why would you consider marrying this person? Communication is key to a successful marriage. Personally I wouldn’t want to be with someone who discourages further education and advancement. You are young. You have PLENTY of time ahead of you for a mortgage and children. Work on your career goals if they are important to you. Marriage can wait.
Post # 3
At the age of 21 you should be investing in yourself, not some boy.
Slack on investing in yourself now and you will pay for it the rest of your life.
Post # 4
You need to bite the bullet and do what’s best for your career, tell him that, even though it will cause a fight, and could mean you losing him. But that’s his choice. If you do break up, better now than when there’s a house, wedding, divorce, kids, etc to contend with.
I feel like the age difference might be hurting you here. It makes it harder for him to relate to what you’re going through. You’re early 20s, he’s early 30s, that’s a big difference. And you were only 18 getting in a serious relationship with a 28 year old! I think that makes it hard to feel like you can make adult decisions independently. But it’s an important thing to be able to do, so just do it. Good luck!
Post # 5
CocoLoco523: I didn’t really explain myself well there. I can talk to him about these things, it’s just that I didn’t want to bring up this conversation until I 100% knew how I felt. At the moment I’m a bundle of confusion.
ladyamalthea: The age gap is not usually a problem, mentally I’m quite an old soul and he is a child! I do love him with every fibre of my being and see my future with him, it’s just difficult that in order to do so, I have to consider making us long distance for a few years so we can live comfortably.
I do believe he understands this deep down, and of course this is all speculation at present, but I guess I just wanted him to be supportive and know that I would be doing this (if I had to) ultimately for us and our future.
When we were vaguely discussing this he made it sound as if I were doing it only for myself and not even thinking of him at all :/
Post # 6
Alarae: Well if he’s 31 and acts like a child, that seems like a problem to me. When I was 20 I dated a 33 year old, and I’m so happy that we never got serious, because I too felt that old soul/child dynamic, and now I’m 24, and that sure as hell wouldn’t work for me now. I’m not trying to say that your relationship is doomed, I know practically nothing about it and it could have just been an unfortunate choice of words, I just want to make sure your eyes are open, because if you think he’s immature now, you don’t have any reason to believe that will change in 3 years. And long distance relationships are really, really hard. I have a hard time envisioning one working with a child-like man.
Also, if you can’t be “selfish” about major life decisions such as doing what’s best for your career now, when the hell can you be? And I think this might be jumping the gun, you should be able to tell your FI that you’re going to apply for this opportunity, and if you do get offered a job that’s far away, you can have the big talk then, before you accept it.
Post # 7
ladyamalthea: You make a valid point I may be jumping the gun a bit, but it is a bit horrible to have this idea that you can’t resolve, even if it is hypothetical. Maybe I was just after a different answer than what he gave when the subject was brought up. Of course when it actually happens then we can actually truly evaluate it. It just truly hurts to think that he may not be able to handle long distance which would mean if I did get this opportunity, it could possibly mean our end.
The way I described our dynamic is probably I’ll worded I admit, he has a healthy dose of immaturity but in the good way, such as in humour. He is very serious when it comes to the important things.
I guess I just want an answer to something I can’t really get an answer to. It’s a bit difficult to go for something that may split us up 🙁
Post # 8
Alarae: The question is, do you want to attend graduate school and possibly further your career? If this is a dream of yours, then I would definitely say go after it. Once you start working, get a mortgage, and other responsibilities, it is very difficult to go back to graduate school. You need to sit down with your FI and discuss your dreams and goals. If he cannot support them, then I think you need to think about the relationship and marriage.
Post # 9
I don’t know if I have much advice about the relationship portion of your situation, but a few thoughts related to graduate school. Graduate degrees aren’t always a path to a better paying, more secure future, of course depending on the field. There are plenty of people with Master’s and Doctoral degrees in very low paying jobs, and jobs that aren’t in the field of their degree. That’s not always the case, but is still reality for many people. Not that I don’t think graduate degrees are worth it (I have a Master’s and am very happy I took the time and effort to go for it). But, just make sure the field you are getting a graduate degree in is something that you really love. If it’s just a means to a higher paying job, it may not pan out as well. It takes a while to really start making decent money in most fields.
It also might be worth it to take a year or two before starting a graduate program. I took a year off between undergrad and grad school, and it really helped me see what I wanted to be doing. I think it also gave me a leg up on the other students who had less job experience. I’ve seen a lot of students enter grad school directly after graduating, and some of them just weren’t ready in my opinion.
However, just because that’s what I did doesn’t mean it will be best for you. I’m just suggesting that you think carefully before going to grad school!
Post # 10
Alarae: I completely understand how stressful worrying about the future can be, especially when you can’t totally do anything about it quite yet. It sucks. All you can do is have the hard conversations, and make the hard decisions, and worst of all, wait.
If you don’t pursue all your career options because of your FI, you could grow to resent him for it, and that’s arguably not a smaller risk than trying long distance.
Post # 11
When I was 21, I chose getting married ahead of building a career.
25 years later, and I still count it as one of the worst mistakes I’ve ever made. My marriage only lasted 3 years, but I was left with many problems – both financial and mental – which have meant that I haven’t been able to get to where I would have really wanted jobwise.
If the situation was reversed, I doubt he would consider giving up on his career. Why should it be different for you?
Post # 12
CHristine2809: Ah, I should probably have stated I am in the UK! A graduate scheme is a job available only for graduates to apply for with their degree. These basically fast track you to higher positions in company alongside studying for a qualification. It’s a job, but the career prospects are solid 🙂
Baal: This is what I’m worried about. I’m hoping I will get onto a scheme that means I can commute, but if not I would have to move if I accepted.
I can’t imagine turning down a fantastic opportunity if I was offered it.. I just wish that my FI would be supportive of a long distance relationship if it happened :/
Post # 13
CHristine2809: my thoughts exactly, spot on!
Post # 14
Alarae: I’m in the UK as well. I’ve also been in a LDR with my FI for nearly 4 years, because he has a well paid job in another city and cannot afford to take a £10K pay cut to move to my city (he’s in the south, I’m in the north).
When I got divorced at 24, I thought that was it for my romantic life, that no one would ever want me again, etc. I could not have been more wrong, it was only the beginning. But I do regret that I spent my late teens and early 20s in a serious relationship/marriage. I missed out on a lot of things that most women do at those ages, and was dealing with stressful situations like divorce, losing my home etc at least a decade before I should have been.
Definitely too much, too young.
Post # 15
You will be investing in giving both of your futures the best possible chance of success. What if he has a horrible car accident? Or a stroke? Or a job loss through no fault of his own? What about having that extra money to make it so you guys can really enjoy married life?
Also – if he cannot deal with temporary separations with you (it’s not as though you could not spend time together on mutual days off) in order to let you be fulfilled… He is a clingy personality at best and quite possibly jealous and spiteful you may become the breadwinner.