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Why I Don’t Plan Ahead in My Relationship

Relationships are great. You get to fall in love with a person and do all the things you did before, but with someone special by your side. You get to go to family dinners together, travel together, cry together, laugh together, and imagine your futures together. Keyword: imagine. 

Every couple is different, so I’m not saying you can’t plan ahead in your relationship, it’s a free country. But I’m going to explain why I don’t plan too far ahead in my relationship, and why I’m really happy we’re this way. 

I’ve been with my boyfriend for over three years now, and we couldn’t be in better shape. So, this is not the reason why we don’t plan ahead, as we do hope to stay together in the future. We sometimes point out houses we like, or cute kids or say things like “that’s gonna be you as a mom/dad”, but never specifics. 

Just because you are happy with someone and think about spending the rest of your life with them, it doesn’t mean that you need to plan the rest of your lives together. So many people in their early twenties already have a detailed plan of their future with their partner, even though most of them don’t even know what they want to be when they grow up. 

Personally, I don’t see the point in planning the age at which you’ll get married, how many kids you’re going to have, what type of pet will be running around your house, and which specific neighborhood you’re going to live in. Thinking about these goals for a future together is fun, but a detailed plan where you agree on a whole bunch of things for the future is not something I choose to do, and here is why.

1. What ever happened to living in the moment? 

I’m so excited for a time when we will have to make big decisions in our relationship, but I want it to be as these big moments approach. The spontaneity will make things so much more exciting and it will be clear if we want the same thing. For example, the big step to move in together. If one person in the relationship comes out and asks the other to move in together, they will definitely get a clear answer and it will be very exciting when it happens. Whereas if there was a plan set in stone that you’d be moving in together at age x, one person could possibly feel obliged to move in because they don’t want to postpone the plan. 

 

2. Plans never happen the way you imagine them to

Try and remember the last time a plan worked out perfectly. Ya, I don’t remember one either. Why risk the disappointment by planning out some of the biggest events of your life? Chances are, whichever way you plan something out, there will be bumps in the road, there always are. These big moments are not the types of events that I want to risk being disappointed in.

3. Plans can get in the way of opportunities

According to Dr. Meg Jay in an interview for bigthink.com, “our 20s are the defining decade of adulthood.” We are so young and this is the time when we will need to make the biggest decisions of our lives. These are the years we will have the opportunity to go abroad for work or school, to change our career directions, to discover new passions, and to grow as individuals. Plans can get in the way of that. I love my boyfriend so much, and I would never want to be the reason for him to miss out on a good opportunity for his career or personal development. 

 

4. God forbid something happens to your relationship

There could be a break up or even worse, a loss. No one wants to think about these things, but the world isn’t always the nicest place. The way I see it, if something happens to end your relationship and you had everything planned with that person, it will feel like the world is collapsing around you. Not only have you lost someone so close to you, but your future without that person with be completely unknown since all your goals revolved around them. I believe it’s good to have your own dreams, and when the time comes, you’ll be able to fit each other’s dreams seamlessly into your life together.

 

I’m really happy with my boyfriend and I’s way of being very chill about our future. Playing it by ear allows us to enjoy the time we spend together without worrying too much about what’s going to happen later. It also lets us to jump at every opportunity we get individually for our careers, education, personal growth, and still be completely supportive of each other.

Alex is a student at John Molson School of Business, currently undertaking a major in marketing as part of the co-operative program, with the goal of pursuing a career in the advertising industry. Travelling, fashion, videography and photography, as well as good food and good wine are some of her favourite things.
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