Should relationship end long-distance gap?
Published 9:15 am Sunday, May 25, 2014
Column: The Nice Advice, by Leah Albert
Question: My boyfriend wants me to move to be closer to him, but it would mean that I’d need to leave my life, my friends and my family behind. I love him, but we’re not engaged yet. We’ve been dating for four years now and are exclusive. What should I do?
— Going the Distance?
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Dear Going the Distance?,
Have you and your boyfriend talked about the future of your relationship? Are you heading down the aisle or at least ready to make that kind of commitment? If so, have you talked about the kind of life the two of you would like to have? Does it match up to where he’s living, where you’re living, or someplace else?
If the two of you are ready to commit to one another living closer, if not together, is the next logical step. If the two of you are not ready to commit to one another, it is this advice columnist’s opinion that moving closer would be ill advised until you have a better understanding of what you both want out of the relationship.
Assuming you are ready to commit, what is your gut telling you to do? Move aside all of the adult responsibilities — job, savings, family, friends, etc. — bearing down on your shoulders right now and give your gut the breathing room it needs to respond.
What your gut tells you should be the baseline for your decision.
Once you know your baseline, here are a few questions to consider:
1. Do either of you have a job that’s more easily replaced than the other, or can one of you, “work from anywhere”?
2. Do either of you have a strong like or dislike of where you are currently living?
3. Are one of you at a place in your life where moving would be easier?
4. Do either of you have family who are dependent on you?
Your, and his, answers to these questions will help guide your decision as well. Maybe it’s not you that needs to move closer to him, but vice versa.
You state in your question to me that you’d be leaving your life, friends and family behind if you move closer to your boyfriend. Is that really true? I’d argue that at least your friends and family would be yours regardless of where you live.
Another question to consider is how important do you consider those things to be in comparison to your relationship? I believe love, at least the type of love that would make me move a long distance, should render everything else unimportant in this decision making process.
Leah Albert is a fictitious advice columnist. She likes wine and writing. Don’t ask her to be a matchmaker. Do send your questions to Leah at email@example.com.