If you’re one of the many final year students who came to Swansea and fell madly in love with your housemate/course friend/random guy from Odyssey (aww, good times) during Freshers, you’re probably starting to wonder – what now?
LDRs – Long Distance Relationships – will be weighing on the minds of many final year couples this month. Holly Miller takes you on a step-by-step guide on how to help you evaluate your relationship before you graduate and speaks to students about their commitment.
Firstly, you need to establish what you want from the relationship.
Do you see yourself being happy with this person, hoping for the same things and planning a future together, or is this someone who booty calls you after a few too many at Tooters?
Catherine Rowland, a final year English Literature student, said:
“I’m moving to my partner’s country after graduation. That’s not to say that maintaining our relationship via Skype/Whatsapp/Facebook wouldn’t be possible, more that I saw graduating from uni as a good time to do something different.
“To make it work, you need to be brave and take risks, having already evaluated that it will be worth it in the long run.”
Catherine also said: “I think long distance relationships work when there is trust and patience, but above all there needs to be some sort of future where long distance no longer plays a part.”
As someone who has been in a long distance relationship for most of my time in Swansea, I can tell you – it’s hard.
But that doesn’t mean it isn’t worth doing if your goals are realistic.
If your partner is planning on travelling for a year and you’re settling down into a job, then are you really willing to accept a relationship where you won’t see each other as both of your lives change beyond recognition?
“It’s not worth the hassle if it’s a new relationship, but sometimes people are worth the distance”, said one third-year Politics student, who is due to graduate this year.
One final year student said it’s best to “nip it in the bud before you graduate.” While this may seem unromantic to some, it’s a justifiable view. It can be so hard to make a relationship work at the best of times, but the next few months for many graduates are full of uncertainty. Your twenties are supposed to be your carefree, happy decade for you to chase your dreams and fulfil your potential. If the relationship you’re in doesn’t support that, then maybe you should ask yourself if it’s really the best thing for you to carry on with it. Another final year student, who is in a relationship, said: “If it’s serious go for it, but only if you know for sure that you want to be together.”
For your relationship to survive post-uni, you’ll need to have a plan.
If you’re just muddling along until something better comes along, what’s the point? Personally, I don’t think LDRs are worth it unless you’re both really committed and are working towards some kind of adult future together.
Unless you happen to live near each other at home, and can carry on as a couple, or as bedfellows whenever the mood strikes, you’re faced with quite a predicament.
How serious is this? Do we want similar things in the next few years? How can we manage being apart? Will this work for me?
You’ll be facing the problem you’ve only had to think about over Easter and Christmas – after so many nights at university spent spooning in a single bed, you’ll find it very strange to spend your nights alone, able to roll over without getting elbowed in the face, or a mouthful of your girlfriend’s hair.
But strange doesn’t mean bad.
At this point in life, final year students face changes in almost every way. If your relationship doesn’t make you as happy as you should be, or doesn’t give you what you need, then why accept anything less than the best?
English Literature student Dav Nash said: “I made especially sure to shed all relationships before the end of term. Forward planning guys!”
There’s no right or wrong answer. No-one can tell you what’s best for your relationship but you (and probably your mum, which can be very annoying).
It really depends on which you would regret more: going for it, and ending up slightly heartbroken if it doesn’t work, or never trying and letting your relationship lie in the past, along with your exam papers and dissertations.