People have always said, long distance relationships don’t work.
I’ve always been told that too — and fair enough, you could say mine didn’t work, since it’s over.
But I choose to believe that I was fine throughout it — you were the one who couldn’t handle it, I guess.
Was I more mature? I like to think so, thanks to my circumstances that forced me to grow up and see life and people in different ways from you.
I was always the one who was able to effectively keep myself busy during the six-month stretches you spent away. I had many groups of friends to meet, activities and ministry I was involved with. I kept my life busy and fulfilling, while still talking to you during the common hours we had awake.
I suppose our communication decreased as time passed, though — I can’t deny that. We both stopped working as hard to commit to time to talk after two years. And I eventually learned, after you dumped me two months after you returned for good, that you were contemplating ending things from a day before you left for your final year of school.
Why did I know nothing about this? I can only say it would have been the breakdown in our communication. I could also blame you for being immature, insecure and selfishly self-centred. I could say you were trying to get my attention by chatting up other girls and announcing your “victory” stories to your housemates like they were trophies — except I didn’t hear about them from you.
Should I have suspected something was wrong? I suppose I told myself as time passed, we got comfortable and used to each other, and I told myself our lack of communication was inconsequential — I trusted you, and you trusted me right? We would talk to each other if we needed to, about anything at all.
Later on — after it was too late — you would try to tell me that I made you feel small for getting influenced by your atheist friends. For urging you to open your heart. Okay.
Yet, perhaps I’m not seeing this fairly. Who knows how I would have been if I were the one who spent all that time away? For all we know, I may have responded in the same way as you. Perhaps I would have been the one who missed you so much (or maybe none of this happened because of that) that I ended up seeking solace in
other girls alcohol, getting wasted as if it’s cool and staggering home to end up on my knees at the toilet bowl.
Fair enough, NS gives the fairer sex a two-year head start on life and on growing up. It’s true I got to start working earlier, and it’s true you would have been at least two (it ended up being three) years before getting to start work proper.
But we were together almost six years. Was I unreasonable to expect us to at the very least start talking about our future?
I didn’t even put a deadline to it. I didn’t even say, we must get married by this date.
All I asked was where this is going. To begin the conversation.
And for that, I was branded as overbearing. And you had to warn my current boyfriend about me.
But hey, you know what? You were right after all. Look at me now, pressuring him to get a job, to take steps to settle down — to the point where it’s gotten us into fights and moments where we drew our entire relationship into question.
Honestly, is it me? Am I simply holding the people I get together with to too-high standards to settle down?
Or perhaps I need to be asking the other, far scarier question — should I not be getting married in the first place? Is my life destined for something else?