High School Romance Impacting Prospects

<p>Hi All,
My son is a high school junior who is madly in love with his junior girlfriend, who seems to feel the same way. They have similar academic and extracurricular backgrounds so they are probably roughly equally competitive in terms of where they will be accepted once they start applying to schools next year. However, the girlfriend's requirements for a university differ fairly widely from my son's and I see him starting to change his desires to accommodate her. Even if they don't end up at the same school, he is trying to find a school near where he thinks she will be, which is almost more worrisome because I think he would then spend most weekends with her and not engaged with the college he ultimately attends. Yes, I know compromise is possible, and yes, I know better than to get in the way of Romeo and Juliet, but what I'm wondering is if any of you might have experienced a similar situation. How did you resolve it? Or, how did it turn out? I want him to follow his academic heart, not his romantic heart, because he has SOOOO many more options that way. I'd look forward to hearing your thoughts. Thanks!</p>

<p>After something like this impacted my son’s junior year, I had a long talk with him about relationships, perspective, and how to avoid getting sidetracked by drama. I think he really thought about it and made a mental adjustment this year. He seemed to realize that it was important to his future to view the big picture.</p>

<p>My D is a senior and will be “celebrating” two years with her high school boyfriend next month. While they have applied to several of the same schools, I am keeping my fingers crossed that they do not end up at going to the same one. We have had discussions about the difficulty of long distance relationships and how they can keep you from going out and meeting new people and from fully experiencing the college you are at. I told her that if she was planning on sticking with her home town boyfriend then perhaps she should stay here and attend the CC. We also discussed the idea of breaking up as friends before leaving for school since it would be better for both of them to part on good terms rather than the heartbreak that comes from one of them deciding while away that they no longer wish to be in a relationship. Either way, I know that it is going to be a difficult and potentially painful situation. I hate to think that D would be hundreds of miles away trying to adjust to college and dealing with heartbreak at the same time. If anyone has any good advice, I would love to hear it.</p>

<p>How long have they been together?</p>

<p>What do you mean by saying that he may be compromising his academic choices?</p>

<p>I had/have a similar situation, but my son and his GF didn’t choose their schools based on each other…they are about an hour away from each other. They’re now juniors in college and hoping that they get into the same med school after they graduate. They’ve been together since they were juniors in high school.</p>

<p>I was just thinking of starting a thread about this! My senior D and her bf have been together for over two years. I actually DON’T want them to stay together, even though we think he’s wonderful and it’s been a great first love for both of them. I want her to have a great college experience, which includes meeting new people and new men. My feeling is that you meet your friends in hs because you by chance live in the same town. In college you really choose your tribe. My friends from college are still my best friends, thirty years later. She may come back to her bf someday, but I want some other romantic experiences in between. I must say I’d be aghast if she married him without ever going out with other people.</p>

<p>That said, I’m sad that if they do break up, it will tinge both of their college experiences with sadness in the beginning. That does worry me and breaks my heart. But I think she is starting to prepare herself for separation already. In our case, I just talked a lot about how relationships change as people change. I did it small chunks, here and there-- no huge lecture about love with capital L. If your son is a junior, you have time to start introducing the idea of his life as his life, and how amazing and wonderful it will be, and if the relationship is meant to be, maybe it will be. But that if it doesn’t, it’s okay-- it still made him who he is. </p>

<p>This is a toughie, isn’t it?</p>

<p>My d has a 3 year bf who she met as a freshman in college. The situation is similar, since I know they are now thinking…but what happens when we graduate in June?
I just keep telling her is is the time of your life when it is all about YOU! You can be a selfish as you want…go for a job that will be a step in the direction you want to go, even if it is in a state or area your bf may not be. </p>

<p>Real strong relationships can benefit or survive separation…or not. </p>

<p>I certainly would give your son the “right now it is all about you” speech.
Good luck mom!</p>

<p>My D has a new boyfriend for a few months now. He lives about 25 miles away so they only get to see each other a few times a week during school. They have both been accepted to Ohio State and to the honored program. I heard them talking about dorms and I thought my D was smart enough to avoid living in the same dorm but maybe not…</p>

<p>I am going to make sure, if possible, they are not in the same honors dorm. I am not worried about attending osu because it is so big that it they break up it shouldn’t be an issue about runnig into each other all the time. I don’t want them to break up, but I don’t want anyone hurt.</p>

<p>My D mailed her acceptance fee yesterday and he mailed his a few days ago.</p>

<p>D1 and her now ex-bf picked the same school, independantly from each other. For d1, it was love of the school. For ex-bf, it was all about the aid. Not going to lie, it was hell. Small school, so they run into each other a lot. They had/have classes together. Supposedly, they broke up as friends, and for the summer when they didn’t see each other daily, they stayed friends, but that deteriorated quickly once school started.</p>

<p>Unless you’re talking about big state U, where the two might never have to see each other, I’d do whatever I could to convince the lovebirds NOT to go to school together. Unfortunately, that’s not much. You can do is hope that a school wins his heart or his wallet (with a big scholarship). Help it along by comparing offers and saying lots of positive things about the schools that are the best fit. Never mention gf in the conversation at all. See what happens.</p>

<p>Btw, after a very rough first semester, d1 and ex-bf seem to be at a truce. They might even be real friends again. We’ll see.</p>

<p>Thanks, rualum – We’ve had some conversations about the subject, but it won’t be much longer before we need a good, mature discussion like you had. I will keep gathering input from the good folks here before I proceed.</p>

<p>Samsmomo – thanks to you, too. I’ll stay tuned to see where your D and her boyfriend end up.</p>

<p>mom2collegekids - thanks for your story. It sounds like your son and his GF are on the right track. That’s great. My DH and I met as freshmen so I know young love can last - looks like it will in your family. My S and his GF have been together for eight months and have spoken of long-term togetherness for ages. I mean that he could get into a better school at the price point we’re comfortable with at the size that best suits him if he looks beyond the weekend travel distance to see his GF. (I hate to get much more specific because I don’t want to malign any of the schools in play.) How did your son and GF happen to end up so close together? Did they only apply to schools in the same region? We’re looking at schools at various regions of the country, up to 15 driving hours away from where we are now, whereas the GF will stay much closer to home.</p>

<p>Wow - more great responses came in while I was writing my thank-yous! Thanks again to the new posters. What great advice and perspective. I’m looking forward to hearing more – thank you --</p>

<p>My S and his GF have been together for eight months and have spoken of long-term togetherness for ages. I mean that he could get into a better school at the price point we’re comfortable with at the size that best suits him if he looks beyond the weekend travel distance to see his GF. </p>


<p>So, is the situation that your son could get into better schools, but is looking at lesser schools in order to be closer to the GF?</p>

<p>If so, then just encourage him to still apply around (and encourage her), because there may be another school (or schools) out there that would be better fits for both of them. </p>

<p>You say that they’re similar in academic strength and interests…what are their intended majors?</p>

<p>While there’s a good chance that they will break up in the next year, if it’s likely that they’ll still be together why not help them find “good fits” that are still somewhat close to each other or at the same school. At least if they’re at the same school, your son won’t be sacrificing “bonding” with his school over her.</p>

<p>What do you mean by saying that he can get into a better school, price point wise? Can’t she as well? Maybe I’m misunderstanding. </p>

<p>If there are economic issues, then you need to make those quite clear to your son.</p>

<p>My son and his GF actually wanted to go to the same school, but her ACT score was one point below getting the scholarship she needed to attend. Another school (an hour away) gave her what she needed in merit for affordability. Since they both want to be doctors, they wanted to spend little on undergrad and save their college money for med school.</p>

<p>We were very lucky that S’s girlfriends college choice was made long before she was born! I am not happy with the amount of texting/skyping, but so far it hasn’t affected grades. I can tell when they are together that they care deeply for one another, but I do feel that this long distance relationship is limiting my son’s social activities and other social opportunities. </p>

<p>My other son’s roommate and his girlfriend have been together for 5 years. Son says the GF is always around and roommate rarely gets to do stuff with just the guys.</p>

<p>I think every college kid should have the opportunity to experience at least the first semester without a high school GF/BF.</p>

<p>I know one boy who decided to go to the school his GF is going to, rather than the OOS school that had been his first choice. His mom was so mad! By about October of their freshman year, they had broken up. Fortunately, they’re at a good school.</p>

<p>I turned own the better school when hs bf did not get in. It remains one of my biggest regrets, as we didn’t even make it past the 2nd week of classes. Luckily, we rarely saw each other.
I agree that mentioning the gf is generally a bad idea, and trying to make the selection process very objective can be more effective-using rankings for college programs, setting very firm money limits, etc.</p>

<p>DS#1 and his GF were seniors and had only been dating a month or so when they made their college choices. And, in reality, both knew from the get-go that they would be far apart. DS chose Penn State, GF is at Texas Tech - a good 1500 mile difference. There was never even an option of them both being in TX since DS refused to apply to any TX schools.</p>

<p>I had concerns about how things would work out, and I am a bit surprised that they are still dating - 2 years later. It has not always been easy since their break times are different, but they are managing. And they are both involved in a variety of activities (band, honors college, departmental organizations, charity groups, etc) and have the opportunity to meet a lot of people, and I think both of them had some limited interest in other people. But - in the end - they have stuck it out. He has visited her campus 2 times (spring break will be 3) and she has gone to see him 2 times.</p>

<p>I have mixed feelings. I really like his GF and think they are a good match - BUT, they are only 20!!! However, they are the ones keeping a long distance relationship going- and I have to give them credit for that. Since they started college (fall 2010), they have probably only spent 11-12 weeks in the same place (since we now live overseas and no longer have a house in Houston). </p>

<p>I thought things would blow up when DS decided to do drum corps again this summer (basically gone from May 25-Aug 11) -but they worked thru that and are still going strong. So who am I to interfere!!!</p>

<p>My thoughts - I would highly discourage my child from attending a school JUST BECAUSE a GF/BF was going there. And I would probably strongly encourage my child to go to a different school (I’m just ornery that way). But, if the school offered the academics (rigor and major program) that my child wanted AND was big enough so that it wouldn’t be “awkward” if they broke up - then I don’t see any real harm. </p>

<p>Kids can always transfer. </p>

<p>I know no one talks about that here - but it happens. (I did it and have no regrets.)</p>

<p>I wouldn’t worry overmuch about a student not being fully engaged in the college he/she attends.</p>

<p>Some students’ lives revolve around their colleges. Others don’t, for any number of reasons. Both groups seem to do OK, in most instances. </p>

<p>Besides, with all of the forms of communication available nowadays, students can be just as distracted from college life by a faraway significant other as by one who is on the same campus or in the same city. And there’s not much you can do about it. </p>

<p>In terms of college selection, the ideal is to choose a college that you would be happy to go to even if you broke up with your boyfriend or girlfriend – and of course, for the boyfriend or girlfriend to do the same. </p>

<p>In 11th grade, my son was deeply involved with a girl a year behind him in school. He decided that his first choice college would be our flagship state university in part because of her. He knew that he could come home (or she could visit him) on weekends very easily because the school was less than an hour from home. And he knew that she was likely to end up at that university as well after she graduated.</p>

<p>As it happened, they broke up early in his senior year, before he had completed his college applications. But that university remained his first choice, because it was near home (something he wanted at the time), because it had an excellent program in his major, and because he liked it in general. His breakup with the girl didn’t affect his college choices. And a year later, she did enroll in the same university, which was a non-issue because it was a large campus (and by then, they were friends anyway). </p>

<p>I consider this a good outcome.</p>



<p>jaylynn, I so could have written this! All except that my senior D and her bf have been together for just over one year, rather than two.</p>

<p>D and bf will definitely be going to different colleges. I think they’re avoiding contemplating the future separation or breakup at present. I just hope it’s not too rough on them, when the time comes, and ideally I’d like for them both to have some other relationships while they’re at college.</p>

<p>Do a search on the term “turkey drop” – it refers to the Freshman thanksgiving vacation breakups…</p>

<p>We have talked with our kids about this and as of right now, bf/gf’s are not influencing their decision process, so far. I’m trying to take advantage of that as much as possible. They have heard from friends with older siblings the issues the older siblings have had with going to a school with a boyfriend and they are turned off by the idea…for now.</p>

<p>When we were in college, no one stayed with high school boyfriends past Christmas. It cost a lot of money to call them, you had to wait for the letters to get back and forth, etc. It was just a lot more work back then. Now, with skype, texting, email, it’s almost like they are at the same place and it’s just easier. </p>

<p>Right now the kids don’t want to go to a school where they know many people, girls or boys. I hope that continues.</p>

<p>“Turkey drop”— snork. </p>

<p>Weatherga-- yes, exactly what you wrote. </p>

<p>Horrible story. I broke up with my hs boyfriend right after leaving Iowa for Madison, Wisconsin. He drove six hours from Iowa City to Madison and called me from the dorm phone (pre cell phone days). I came down, STUCK MY HEAD IN THE CAR WINDOW, said, “I told you! We’re done!” stood up and walked back into my dorm. He drove back to Iowa. How cruel and cold was that. Argh. I could strangle myself now. And I hope my daughter is more compassionate than that. We’ve talked about that story multiple times as an illustration of how not to treat people. Jiminy Cricket.</p>