- 6 years ago
Attempting to spare the details while creating a clear storyline..
Girlfriend and I met a couple years ago, her 22, myself 26. When we met, I was a recent graduate with a couple years experience in my field and she was a full-time store manager, doing well for herself but still taking classes here and there. She always wanted more schooling and I was always very much in support of it.
Time passes and we progress. There were many talks of our future and we were on the exact same page with what we wanted in life, where to live, family dynamics, children, it all seemed so aligned and well-meshed. We are each other’s one. We decided to move in together, have done so, and it’s been great.
Girlfriend begins to compare her education to mine, her job prospects, and becomes increasingly interested in getting a degree. She researches heavily for a couple months, specifically with 2-year associates and 2-year nursing or health-related certificate degrees. I can see it. It fits her. I’m in support of it, but she’s still hesitent. Then she abruptly drops that she plans to go to school full-time to become a teacher and it will take 5 years of full-time schooling. Internally, I’m having a really hard time with this.
Now, I’m sure some of you might be thinking, why is 2 years okay, but 5 is not? It’s a question I’ve asked myself many times now, but I don’t have a clear answer besides it’s how I feel. I feel like I was misled, we had talked of her finishing school but never as a 5 year plan. I feel that’s the kind of timeline that needs to be mentioned ahead of time, because it’s significant enough to really matter in a relationship. I guess part of me feels like our relationship, which was growing up until now, will be put on pause for the next 5 years. And I’m not saying I want kids in 5 years, but I want to be actively getting there. Part of me also feels like for the next 5 years our relationship won’t be a priority to her, and I don’t look forward to 5 years of that, especially when we’ve already had two great ones. I want to keep going, and this feels like a major roadblock compared to a 2 year jaunt.
I’ve tried to look at things from her perspective, and all I cant come up with is that she is simply younger than me, and does not feel ready to settle down. Despite all our talks about the future, we never really set a timeline. I simply assumed it would be “soon” while she seems to have imagined “someday.”
It hurts incredibly. And I feel stuck, yet torn. Our visions seemed too perfect to be aligned, and alas, they weren’t after all. It may be just me, but I currently have little faith we will work out living that dynamic long term, which saddens me greatly, while simultaneously fueling my fear of a self-fulfilling prophecy. She seems to assume that we will be just fine with our “love” keeping us together, but I was once told that love, although strong, is still a garden that needs to be tended. And without a goal for “us” I’m afriad we will drift and dwindle.
Do you break up when it’s obvious your futures don’t line up as expected? Do you wait until things turn sour before biting the bullet? Is there a chance?