Relationships are Hard and Why That's Okay

I can't remember exactly what prompted the start of this conversation, but it quickly made me realize something extremely important. My boyfriend and I had just had an argument over a miscommunication or something (Ah, the joys of long-distance relationships!). Afterwards, he sent me a text message that read something along the lines of:

"I refuse to accept that our relationship is hard. Everything else is hard, but we can't be." 

I was stunned for a minute. "But it is hard," I replied.

Relationships, especially in college, are hard.

Photo courtesy of pexels.

That's almost a taboo thing to say. There's a general belief out there that, if you're with the person you're meant to be with, everything will come easily. Your love will be like the wind, as our friend Nicholas Sparks would put it. But the fact of the matter is that love, in general, is anything but easy breezy (horrible pun intended).

And that is okay.

Your significant other doesn't have to be your perfect-fitting puzzle piece. There isn't anything wrong with you if you get hurt or annoyed or angry when they do something that makes you feel cast aside or invalidated. There isn’t anything wrong with you for getting frustrated that you haven’t seen your S.O. in weeks, or feeling like you’re not on the same wavelength.

There's a really thought-provoking New York Times piece that opened my eyes to what fighting can mean in a relationship. Sometimes you have to fight. It doesn’t mean you have to belittle or blatantly disrespect each other. It means that sometimes you have to let that frustration out, you have to have the courage to say, “Look, you’re making me feel _______” or “_______ really pissed me off.”  Don’t let it build up inside of you because it will eat at you. Let it out. Yell. Then find a way to fix things and move forward.

This isn't to say that you should stay in a relationship any longer than you feel necessary. Nor are we trying to romanticize downright unhealthy relationships. Chances are if you're finding yourself perpetually unhappy within, or because, of your relationship, then you’re better off leaving. However, you also shouldn’t walk away from someone who genuinely makes you happy because things start getting rocky. You’re both human, and you need to cut yourselves some slack.

You’re going to have disagreements and miscommunications, sometimes maybe even multiple in a row. Rough patches don’t mean that your future is doomed, or that you’re no longer working out because the ease of it all is gone. It may mean that you need to find a new way to come together and handle certain things. It may mean you need to spend a little bit of time apart or find a way to make more time to be together.

The bottom line is, if you’re with the right person, you’re going to get through it. Even if it’s hard.

Thumbnail courtesy of Unsplash