Sometimes a guy comes along that makes your chest fill with butterflies and causes the words in your mouth to become tangled and incomprehensible. Sometimes all of the stars align and you are actually able to DATE this amazing guy. You want to be together every waking second of every day. Most of us have been there. While this inseparable state is first exhilarating and then comfortable, there are a variety of risks you run by super-gluing yourself to your significant other.
My friends Anna and Jesse have served as real-life examples of the detrimental effects of this practice. Anna and Jesse have been dating slightly over a year and the hours they have spent apart during this period could be combined to form, at most, a full day (maybe).
Anna and Jesse take the same classes in school, eat every meal together, spend all of their free time side by side, and finally every night, go to sleep in the very same bed. If it were up to Anna, Jesse would probably escort her to the bathroom, but the boy stands up for himself once in a while.
The first effect of this unhealthy relationship was the constant bickering. Since the couple had no individual lives, they were completely focused on every tiny detail of what the other was doing. Fights would break out concerning what to eat for dinner and develop into screaming fits. These arguments escalated to banging doors, sobbing, and throwing objects at each other.
Anna hadn’t made many friends at college before she met Jesse, but Jesse had a few close male friends who he had spent a considerable amount of time with before Anna came along. Since Anna forbid him to spend time with these friends, one by one, Jesse found that the people he used to go out with on the weekends stopped calling. Friends became reluctant to hang out with the couple because they constantly fought. If this wasn’t the case, they were whispering “sweetie” and “baby” to each other and obviously everyone around them felt painfully uncomfortable.
Anna’s relationship with her mother has suffered as she often opts to spend holidays with Jesse’s family instead of her own.
Worst of all, when Anna and Jesse fight, Anna is basically on her own. She desperately calls people she hasn’t spoken to in months, but sometimes she can’t find anyone to relate to because her life is so completely centered on Jesse. If they break up for good, she will have no one to help her get over him.
The lesson here? Find a balance. Don’t isolate your friends or your family. It’s amazing to be strongly connected to the person you love, but sometimes you need some insight from an outside source. Keep a little bit of excitement in the relationship. It’s better to suffer through spending a few hours apart and have something to talk about at the end of the day rather than being together the whole time and feeling miserable.