Throughout your life, the likelihood that you’ll have more than one romantic relationship is pretty high. With these relationships come your own individual goals and expectations for the two of you. Most of these things come from observations you have made from other couples in your life. Whether it’s your parents, a couple on TV (hello Marshall and Lily!) or the couple at your school who have been dating seemingly forever- you are setting yourself up for failure if you think that you need to be as perfect as you think they are. I know this because after dating someone for 4 years and at times being that “idealized couple” by our friends, I know that there is no such thing as the Perfect Couple and we are not nearly as put together as we may seem.
There isn’t a couple that never gets into fights….and that’s okay. Fighting seems to be something that new couples always are scared of and seems to be a taboo thing to admit to but in reality, there is no couple that never has their moments. Whether it is about a pet peeve that you don’t particularly care for or someone messing up a plan, there will be times your partner annoys you or makes you angry and that is totally fine, if not healthy. Fighting and actually admitting how you feel is super important and shows that you really care. This doesn’t make a couple impaired, it makes them mature.
No couple goes on as many adventures or travels as much as their Instagram makes it seem. This one I am totally guilty of- posting the cutest and most adventurous pictures we have- but take it from me, 99% of the time we are doing homework in the library or watching a movie at home. If our lives were to be a constant adventure that Instagram likes to make it seem, we would not be functional members of society plus nobody got time for that.
Your families might not get along as well as you hope and that is super common! Meeting your partner’s family is a big deal and one that everyone hopes goes well, but sometimes it can be a rough transition for everyone and personalities might not mesh. Be willing to be patient and accept that it might not be the picture perfect situation where you suddenly are invited to every family dinner.
With college these days and the endless opportunities, long distance is something that many couples have to endure. I’ve had personal experience with this and I know it can be a struggle and show some weaknesses in your relationship. Think of it as a test though! If your relationship can make it through those tough times, than that is one more piece of evidence that your relationship may be meant to last, but if it doesn’t, wouldn’t you rather know sooner than later? Relationships that show the test of time and space are ones that will last, but don’t expect it to be easy and seamless.
Whether you are in a long-term relationship and you are reading this feeling like you can connect with all of these things or if you feel like none of these things will ever happen to you, remember that every relationship will naturally have its own negatives and positives! During the moments where you feel like the world is crumbling because it’s your first big fight or you found out your boyfriend is moving to San Francisco for the summer, try to keep in mind that no relationship is perfect, even the ones you idealize and that at the end of the day, problems are bound to arise, you just have to work through them together! And working through those problems together then coming out better than before makes it all worth it. It is also the whole point.