<< Back to Long Distance Advice Q&A's
Boyfriend's military school limits outside communicationAugust 5, 2008
I have been with my boyfriend for 7 months, and he is getting ready to leave for college. He is going to go to Norwich University in Vermont, and I am staying in Texas. I know it doesn't seem like we have been dating long and that we are young, but I know what I want, and it is him. The biggest problem with him leaving is that he will not be able to call or anything for the first 3 months he is there, and to make it worse he can only call once a week for 10 min the rest of the semester, because it is a strict military school.
I don't really know what to do with myself once he leaves and I am getting really worried that our relationship will not last the distance and the strain of his school. I was wondering if anyone had any advice on how to cope with him being gone, and how to make the distance work.
No need to defend your decision to be with your boyfriend at your age. Frank and I started dating while we were sophomores in college. We had met in person, but both our relationship and prior friendship was always long distance. We also made the decision to be together despite being young (20 yrs old) and it being our first real relationship with anyone.
If you don't mind me saying, wow, his school is more like prison... He has no free days? No weekends? He can't have his own cell phone to make calls on his free time? And what is the point of the school cutting off their students' communication with the outside world for 3 months? It doesn't make much sense this Norwich University...
I was really curious and I tried to research the school's rules and regulations. I didn't see anything against phone use, but maybe it is because they are referring to the regular part of the college and not the Corps of Cadets. I did find this:
"Personal computers, especially laptop computers, are authorized and encouraged."If his computer time isn't as restricted as his phone time, then maybe you two could spend time together online using an instant messaging service and webcams. Writing frequent emails to keep in touch is also another option.
If this is also barely possible, then geez...
So what can you do? Well, you could make use of the US Postal Service and send letters. It may sound boring and like a lot of effort, but if it's all you have, then it's your only choice. Keep it creative though. Send cards, poems, drawings, postcards... You could also send care packages with treats and other little gifts your boyfriend would like. Hopefully he would have time to return the favor. Receiving mail is always fun, and a lot of long distance couples frequently send mail to each other.
When he leaves your routine will inevitably be changed. If you normally see him at certain times of the day, at those times you're going to have to fill the void. Work new things into your routine. Try something new that you've always wanted to do but didn't have the time for. Read a book. Watch movie. Write. Paint. Go out with friends. Anything is better than dwelling on missing your boyfriend and doing nothing.
Frank and I recently answered a similar question like yours that Cayenne asked. He also wanted to know how to cope with missing his girlfriend. As I suggested to Cayenne, why not spend the time you're away from your boyfriend making something for him? And as I said to him, "It really does help take your mind off the negatives of being in a long distance relationship, and makes you focus more on your love for the other person." Go to Cayenne's question to read a list of suggestions.
I know you're scared that your relationship won't be able to survive the distance, but please try to remain positive. And for your boyfriend's sake try not to resent his college of choice for being so far away and remember that it is important to be supportive of him. Obviously he is in for a tough college career, and as hard as it is for you to deal with the distance, it will be for him too, if not harder.
Wow, that is quite a predicament. Well, for one, I am almost positive that Norwich allows you to write letters. That can be fun...for the first month... My friend went to the Marines, and all you could do in boot camp was write letters. They gave him one call on Christmas, but that was it. However, the excitement of getting a letter helped carry him through. It was almost bragging rights to get a letter them in boot camp. It was even more of a ego booster if your girlfriend was sending you letters. It gave him something to do during the nights during down time, and it helped him feel closer to home. It is such a romanticized way of talking too. You can take his letters and post them in your room and show your friends.
And there is email. Now, I really doubt that they will allow a headset for him to talk to you via the internet, but that is another option. (I looked online, they almost definately wouldn't allow it.)
Amanda, it will not be easy. However, I think there is comfort in knowing that there are really no temptations for him there to mess up your relationship. After the first semester, it must get easier as he is no longer a "rook". I never liked the idea of people breaking up because of school. And I also never liked the idea of people changing their school career or path because of their relationships. I really think you need to think in your head of how you are going to do this. And speak to your boyfriend of your plans. Of how you plan to remain close while separated in every way possible. Also, do not forget it will be very hard for him as well.
I know that it is annoying to hear, but other people have to go through this too, and their relationships last.
And if all else fails, think of how awesome it will be when you see each other again. But really, psych yourself up for this. Be mentally ready before he leaves. I hope it works.
<< Back to Long Distance Advice Q&A's