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Gobble Gobble: Relationship Trouble? Avoiding the Infamous ‘Turkey Drop’

You’re finally home for Thanksgiving, and he’s on his way over. Your hands are sweating. You haven’t seen him in the flesh since August and you can barely contain your excitement. You’ve been together forever and you know he could care less what you look like, but you even bought a new dress to make yourself look extra pretty for that unforgettable first impression.
 
You hear his car pull in the driveway. He’s finally there. Your heart skips a beat. You immediately run toward him. He takes your hand and says, “We need to talk…”
 
He’s breaking up with you.
 
For college students, Thanksgiving break does not only consist of eating their mother’s homemade stuffing and freshly cooked turkey, but has also quickly become the routine week for long-distance high school to college relationships to end, hence the cheeky term “turkey drop.”
 
According to Urban Dictionary, a virtual dictionary of street-known slang words and phrases, turkey drop is “when a college freshman breaks up with their long-time steady on the first holiday vacation back home, usually at Thanksgiving.”
 
“I first heard about [turkey drop] from my RA during Summer B,” said freshman Teagan Hinderliter. “I think that it’s so common because the couples have had enough time to test out the waters of college and they finally have the opportunity to talk to their partner face to face.”
 

“No matter how much the people in relationships do not want to change, they do,” said Ellie Taliaferro, a first year student whose boyfriend is still attending high school in her hometown. “By the time Thanksgiving comes around they’re not used to being in a relationship where they see each other everyday and those little changes are what split them apart.”
 
Here are some tips on how you can avoid being ‘turkey dropped’ and keep your long-distance relationship alive:
 
Skype. Skype. Skype… Did we mention Skype?
It may not be exactly face-to-face, but it’s certainly the next best thing. Even if it is just for five minutes a day, seeing each other smile will comfort both of you for the time being. To avoid frustration, create a schedule for when both of you are available.
 
** If the two of you happen to be in different time zones, be respectful of one another. You may not always be able to talk or Skype at the same time everyday.
 
Put effort into making other friends
Having friends on campus to hang out with will help you avoid feeling lonely when you’re missing him and keep the sadness away. Don’t think he’s just wallowing in his room. You deserve to have fun too!
 
Keep it romantic
Send him little gifts or messages to let him know that you’re thinking of him. Believe it or not, it will make his day and it will remind him of why he fell for you in the first place.
 
Make time for each other
Do things together while texting on the phone or video chatting on Skype. It may not seem possible, but watching a movie or TV show at the same time as your partner makes you both feel like you’re still able to spend time together in spite of the distance college has put between you.
 
Choose your fights wisely
Remember you’re either arguing through a phone or a computer screen and that is unhealthy for any relationship. Don’t make a big deal out of little things that won’t matter the next day.
 
Appreciate the time you do have together
If you’re lucky enough to be able to visit one another at some point during the semester make the best of it and be grateful for the time you get to have together, even if it’s only for a day or two.
 
Most Importantly…
 
Be honest
If something is bothering you, speak up. If everything is left unsaid, assumptions will be made and the tension will build, causing feelings to change.
 
Trust each other
Don’t assume that he’s cheating on you and don’t think he doesn’t care. Bringing up past mistakes or becoming suspicious whenever he goes out with friends just causes unnecessary arguments and will make being away from each other even harder. If you don’t trust him, how is he supposed to trust you?
 
Communicate
You don’t have to talk to each other every second of every day, but keep in contact with one another so that you still feel involved in each other’s lives. Make sure to tell each other exactly how you feel in regards to your relationship. It will keep misunderstandings from occurring and stress levels at a minimum in the long run.

Cara oversees Her Campus Media's community department and serves as strategic lead for the expansion, development and management of all HCM communities, including the Her Campus Chapter Network, InfluenceHer Collective, College Fashionista, Spoon University, Campus Trendsetters, alumni and high school. She works closely with company leadership to develop new community-related sales offerings and the Integrated Marketing team to support all community-focused client marketing programs from end to end. Cara has experience working with high-profile talent, such as Jessica Alba, Andrew Yang, Amber Tamblyn, Aja Naomi King, Troian Bellisario, Jessica Marie Garcia, Nico Tortorella, Nastia Liukin, Rebecca Minkoff, Cecile Richards and Samantha Power, as well as brands like Coca-Cola, L'Oréal Paris, The New York Times, HBO, Uber, H&M and more. Having been a part of the HC family since 2011, Cara served as Campus Correspondent of the HC chapter at the University of Florida where she studied journalism, women’s studies and leadership. A New Yorker turned Floridian, Cara has a Friends quote for any situation. You can usually find her with her friends and family at the beach, a concert or live sports event or binge-watching Grey's Anatomy or Sons of Anarchy. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter @thecararose.
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