Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

“He’s the First Guy I’ve Ever Dated”

In a feature I call “Your Turn,” in which you, the readers, get to answer the question, I’m presenting the following letter without commentary from me:

I’m in college and am dating my first boyfriend! It seems pretty lame, but I’m quite the late bloomer, or, really, was put in a tiny town with people who didn’t want to date someone of my race (half black, half Asian). But come to university, and wow! I’ve never had guys interested in me like this. So, I’ve been dating this guy for about six months. I’m about to go meet his parents in a few weeks. And I love the boy. He’s quite awesome and hilarious and sweet. But.. he’s going to graduate school in a semester, pretty far away, while I’ve got 2-3 more years left in college. I know I’m going to try a long distance relationship, but I feel held back a bit because..well, he’s my first boyfriend. My only boyfriend. And I don’t know whether or not I want to date other people in the next two or three years while I’m in college.

I feel extremely guilty for thinking that, in the future, I might want to break up because I want to have experience with other types of guys, but a small part of me (and my older sister..) tells me that I should not be “tied down” my whole college life, especially to the only boy I’ve ever even kissed. What if I was going to marry him one day? I feel like I don’t want to get married without experiencing the rest of the dating world a little bit. Or what if he wants to meet new girls at his new school?

I think what I’m really trying to say is that I’m scared. I love my boyfriend, but I’m scared of long distance, and I’m scared that (although in theory, I love the idea) we’re going to get married after I graduate, and I will always wonder what it would have been like if I’d dated some other person who came along. But I don’t want to hurt him. Help! — First Love

37 comments… add one
  • ReginaRey February 2, 2012, 9:16 am

    Alright, LW, repeat after me: “It’s ok to feel the way I’m feeling.” Say it again. And then say it AGAIN. There is NOTHING wrong with being scared to end up with the only person you’ve ever dated.

    Let me tell you a story. I broke up with my long-term boyfriend about 5 months ago. There were a lot of different factors that contributed to our breakup, but there are two big ones that I think are extremely relevant: One, I had the nagging feeling that I may be able to find someone even better suited to me, and that feeling just wouldn’t go away. Two, while he was not my first boyfriend, I was his first girlfriend. That too nagged at me, because I kept wondering, “What if he only wants to be with me so much because he doesn’t know anything else? He has no standard of comparison.”

    Sometimes, you only have to date one person to find your life partner. My best friend is getting married in June to her boyfriend of 6 years, the only one she’s ever had, and they’re extremely right for each other. She has no doubt of that. But that’s just it. When you get married or envision a long-term future with someone, you need to feel very confident that they’re right for you…whether they’re your first or fifteenth boyfriend.

    You don’t need to break up with your boyfriend right now because you’re scared and worried. If you love him and are in a healthy, great relationship, don’t end it prematurely! Try the long distance, and see what happens. But know this – if your nagging doubt and worry never goes away, then that’s a sign that you need to be single and continue dating. Marrying someone when you’re thinking “What if…?” in the back of your head is NOT a recipe for a long-lasting marriage.

    Personally, I’m glad I’ve had 2 long-term, serious boyfriend that didn’t work out. For me, I don’t think I could be like my best friend. I’d be too worried, too anxious that someone else was out there. Because I’ve dated multiple people, I’m confident that when I DO meet the “right” person, I’ll be able to know it when I see it. If that’s what you want, too, then that’s perfectly acceptable.

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  • CottonTheCuteDog February 2, 2012, 9:18 am

    My sister never dated anyone ever. We were all kind of worried. Then last year when she was 27 she met her now fiance. She never once thinks about what it would have been like to date other guys. She knows the one she has is great and doesn’t want to look further.

    My fiance never dated anyone he loved and never anyone longer than 5 months. My record of dating someone was 6 months before I met him.

    Love is so powerful that if you really did love this “boy” you would not be thinking about dating anyone else. My advice is to talk with your boyfriend and say you do not want to do the long distance thing. A lot of people don’t want to do it. I would not tell him that you want to date others to see what others are like. That would just hurt him.

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    • Steph February 2, 2012, 12:57 pm

      I actually don’t really agree with your last paragraph. I met my husband when I was in college. We have now married and have been together for 5 years. I love him. I adore him and I am happy with my life, but it would be a lie to say that I have never thought about what it would have been like to date other people, be single and explore the world on my own. He’s the only man I’ve ever had sex with and it would also be a lie to say that I haven’t wondered if that will be okay for the rest of my life. It doesn’t mean that I don’t love him, it just means that sometimes you question your life choices and the paths you chose to take. There is nothing wrong with that. I do agree however, that the LW should tell her bf she doesn’t want to do a long distance thing.

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      • FancyPants February 2, 2012, 1:06 pm

        I’m with you Steph. It wouldn’t make sense not to wonder. I’m pretty sure people who marry their 4th or 5th boyfriend wonder about things too. And why wouldn’t you? I moved far away to attend art school for university. I always wonder what my life would have been like if I had stayed closer to home, or if I had focused on my other passion, History. Sometimes I wonder about whether I had taken different job opportunies or spent more time cultivating different hobbies. That’s the nice thing about wondering though – it’s not actually fantasizing, cheating or doing anything wrong, and it’s human.

        The LW will probably wonder for her entire life about something – either the other guys she could have dated if she marries her first boyfriend, or the life she could have had if she had just stuck with him. And there’s nothing wrong with that. I’d wonder about her if she didn’t.

      • CottonTheCuteDog February 2, 2012, 3:04 pm

        Perhaps my statement was written wrong. While, yes it is okay to “wonder” I think it is completely different to break off the relationship to explore. I think my sentence should say “Love is so powerful that if you really did love this “boy” you would not want to break up the life you have build with him, just to explore your desires”

  • silver_dragon_girl February 2, 2012, 9:19 am

    You know what? It sounds like to me you are overthinking this. I know what that’s like- I do it ALL. THE. TIME.

    You’ve been dating for 6 months, right? Why don’t you just enjoy your time with your current boyfriend, without worrying so much about where it’s going? You have a semester before he leaves for grad school, so see how things look then before committing to an LDR. Seriously, just let things flow naturally.

    Don’t put so much pressure on yourself to decide RIGHT NOW where this relationship will go or what will happen with regards to it in the future. Just enjoy it 🙂 I know that’s easier said than done for a lot of people (like me), but please give it a try.

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    parton_doll February 2, 2012, 9:27 am

    LW – The choice is really yours. You’re thinking way far in the future and I would tell you just to take things as they come. If you both decide that a long distance relationship is what you want, try it out. If it isn’t working out for the both of you, then break it off.

    I know sometimes there seems to be a stigma about not dating enough, etc. But I married the only guy I ever kissed. Pretty much my first serious boyfriend. We met while I was in college a long way from home. I am perfectly content with my life and marriage ten years later. So you can go that route if you want without feeling like you’re missing out on something.

    My point is, take your time and allow yourself the ability to grow in this relationship and see where it goes. There is nothing wrong with being a “late bloomer” (take it from the queen of that club). So let that notion go and just enjoy what you have right now. When it’s time for your boyfriend to graduate and you’re still feeling that this is a good thing, discuss what you both want and need out of a LDR. Check in with each other as your relationship progresses to make sure you’re still getting what you need out of it. And if it doesn’t work, break it off with no regrets. You had a great relationship. If it does work out, yay you for finding that someone who makes you happy.

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  • Renee February 2, 2012, 9:28 am

    My husband’s one and only, after all these years it has never been relevant. But I understand that feeling and over thinking happens. Just enjoy your relationship.

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    Budj February 2, 2012, 9:31 am

    GOI (“Get over it” – weak I know…sue me) – you have nothing to feel guilty about. You should rewire your thinking to “I need other experiences – if he is right for me it will work out in the future” and if in two years you realize that he was the one and he is with someone else? Just remember that there are a lot of guys that could make you just as, if not more, happy……..and potentially sadder…but that 2 years is supposed to teach you to watch out for those ones.

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      Budj February 2, 2012, 10:24 am

      I wrote this reading your letter thinking this is what you wanted – if you are only questioning it because of your sister then I would advise you to listen to yourself.

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    leilani February 2, 2012, 9:40 am

    If I were you, I would stop worrying about the “what ifs” of the future and just concentrate on how I’m feeling now. You guys have only been dating 6 months, and you’re about to potentially try long-distance for the first time. Your relationship might not work out for a host of reasons that you can’t envision yet, so I wouldn’t create problems where there are none. It doesn’t seem like he’s pressuring you into any kind of crazy commitment or anything. Do you really want to break up with your boyfriend just because he’s your first?
    That said, its totally normal to be afraid about the future when you’re starting to get more serious with someone you can really see a future with. I’ve definitely been there. But I don’t think you should let imaginary scenarios that could potentially happen years down the line affect your decisions now. If you are happy with him now, be with him now. If you try long distance and you are still happy then, stay with him then. If you find yourself thinking you would rather be single and dating other people than be with him, break up with him. But don’t break up with him because you think in the future you MIGHT possibly want to be single and date other people. You can cross that bridge when you come to it.

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      Budj February 2, 2012, 9:48 am

      I am someone that needs to be all in for these situations…if I start questioning…it just becomes a shit storm that I drag out too long. If she is like me I wouldn’t recommend this.

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  • Morgan February 2, 2012, 9:45 am

    Okay, LW, two stories for you.

    1) My boyfriend and I, who I do plan to marry, is the only guy I’ve ever been in a relationship with. Not the only guy I’ve ever kissed, not the only guy I’ve ever slept with, not the only guy I’ve ever sort of been “involved with but it’s not serious we’re just hanging out”, but the only guy I’ve ever loved, and the only guy I’ve ever been in a committed relationship with. And I do appreciate having that single year in college, it was a damn fun year. But not more fun than being with someone I love. And at the beginning of our relationship, I did wonder about his being my only relationship. I don’t wonder anymore. I second what Regina Rey said, though, that if you do find yourself still wondering, a year in, two years in, then you may want to reevaluate. But its okay to worry at first, especially when faced with long distance, his graduation, a whole host of changes.

    2) My boyfriend’s brother is getting married. His fiance was in your shoes, in that he was her first serious boyfriend. They actually did break up, because it freaked her out at the end of college that this guy, the only guy she’d ever dated, could possibly be the one. They dated other people, they both realized the only people they wanted to be with were each other, and now they’re engaged. It’s a lot more complicated than that, of course, but I guess my point is you’re not the first girl to feel this way.

    2-3 years of college is a long time, and you’ll grow and change a lot in that time. Your boyfriend will also be experiencing a lot of changes as he goes to grad school or gets a job. Maybe you’ll grow together, maybe you won’t. Enjoy the relationship, but don’t be afraid to reevaluate if things stop working.

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    • SweetPea February 2, 2012, 10:01 am

      Your story #2 reminds me of some friends of mine that are a couple. They were together as teenagers up until their early 20’s. At some point, the guy in this duo decided he needed to experience dating other people. It broke her heart, but they both moved on for a while. They both had multiple other relationships and spent their mid 20’s with other people… but never got over each other. I remained friends with both of them throughout, and the love was always still there, despite the fact that they barely saw each other. They are now back together and I have it on good authority that he will soon be proposing (Shhhh!).

      While I think the break up/make up game is a dangerous one to play… there is always the possibility of the LW taking a break while they are long distance to really think about what she wants. While there being “one true love” for each person in the world is a little hokey… I think there is the possibility that if they are truly compatible and have a strong love, they could take a break and make it work down the road.

      I do think that at her young age, she has the right to take her time thinking about this and not feel forced to make any decisions right here and now.

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  • Lindsay February 2, 2012, 9:48 am

    I’m not sure what him being your first boyfriend has to do with a long-distance relationship. That’s something that you’ll have to decide based on what you both want. As for the idea that you may later want to have dated more people, don’t count your chickens before they hatch. You’ve got two to three years of long distance to get through before you’d be committing the rest of your life to him. But if you do want to date other people now, then that’s a decision you’ll have to make.

    As for that whole concept, it’s something that I generally understand but don’t put a lot of stock in. I have a couple of friends who married their first real boyfriend. They expressed concerns before their marriages that they’d (presumably) die having only kissed or slept with one person. But in the end, they wanted to be married to that person, so having a string of flings or other boyfriends was not worth ruining their relationships over. I’ve dated many guys, and I have to say that had I met a husband somewhere in the middle of that, I would not miss any of those losers.

    So, just take things as they come and don’t look at everything through the lens of “this is my first boyfriend” because it’s the person your with and your relationship, not what number, that will make you happy.

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    FireStar February 2, 2012, 9:52 am

    Relax. You don’t have to decide if you are going to marry this boy today. All you need to decide is do you like him enough to continue dating him. If the answer is yes then do that. If you want to try long distance when he graduates then talk about it when the time is right. If you feel long distance isn’t working for you at that time then deal with that then.
    No one knows what the future holds – maybe you decide that you don’t want to date anyone else 6 months from now; maybe you break up and your next boyfriend is a serial killer – or downright dreamy; maybe there are 20 boyfriends waiting for you in your future before you marry; maybe you decide to never marry. Who knows? Just deal with the here and now – it’s all you really have.

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  • Guy Friday February 2, 2012, 10:07 am

    I think the important thing to know is that, honestly, WHATEVER way you choose, it will work out fine. You’re going to find tons of stories about people who broke up with their first love and ended up with someone who fit them even better, and you’re going to find an equal number of stories about people who stayed with their first love and have never regretted that choice for a second. And, yes, you’re going to find people who broke up with their first love and regretted it later and people who stayed with their first love too long and regretted not having the freedom. But things work out for the best in life, even if we can’t see it right away, and even if we don’t realize it until years later.

    You’ve been dating this guy for 6 months, and it’s pretty clear that all the “what if”s for the future are overwhelming the hell out of you. I know other people have mentioned this before, but I promise you that you’re not falling behind the curve or doing something wrong if you take it day by day for now. Sure, when your boyfriend is getting very close to graduation, then you might want to sit down with him and say, “Hey, how should we handle this?” But for now, the only question you need to know the answer to is “Are you happy with him?” And as long as that answer is yes, just keep doing what you’re doing.

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  • SpaceySteph February 2, 2012, 10:13 am

    I think that the mindset that you shouldn’t be tied down in college is so outdated. First of all, you have plenty of time post-college to also sow your wild oats or whatever. Life doesn’t end at graduation, you still can have fun. I have more fun post-college because I am old enough to buy alcohol, make enough money to afford cover and booze and fun, and have more free time on the weekends now that I don’t spend every one under a pile of books. And I didn’t enter a serious relationship until my senior year of college… I still have more fun now.
    Anyways my point is that your older sister is wrong. You can date this guy for 6 months or 6 years and still have time on the other side to experience other boys, if you so choose.
    If you do decide to do an LDR, just make sure that you are not holing yourself in your room every moment you are not in class. Have fun. Hang out with girlfriends. Go to parties. Enjoy your life. Not everything about the college experience requires sticking your tongue down a strange dude’s throat… and being in a relationship with someone you love doesn’t have to equal “tied down.”
    Stop listening to everyone else’s advice, talk to your bf about your concerns, and go from there. Maybe you will do an open relationship. Maybe you will take a break and agree to revisit the relationship after 6 months apart and see where you both are. Maybe he’s not even interested in an LDR- have you asked?

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      leilani February 2, 2012, 11:29 am

      Its a good point that your opportunities to date around and have fun don’t end with graduation, especially in our current culture of prolonged adolescence. My most fun period of dating (and okay, sleeping) around happened after I graduated. I had an awesome year where I was seeing lots of different guys and doing whatever I wanted and enjoying the single life. This happened simply because I wanted it to happen. If you decide you want to settle down after college, that’s a choice you’re making.

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    call-me-hobo February 2, 2012, 10:14 am

    Hey LW,

    BREEEAATHHHE. Ok, you done? Now take another very deep breath and calm down.

    I’m about to graduate college. I met my current boyfriend my senior year of high school. I have only kissed one other person, and I was his first kiss. About two years into our relationship, we BOTH experienced the panicky-concerned feeling that you are describing. We sat down and talked about seeing other people. We decided that we should probably start seeing other people casually…so we started laying down ground rules about what we would feel comfortable with the other person doing….

    And then we realized that we didn’t want to date other people. Our guidelines were silly, and not fair to the potential third party. So we said, screw all this “experience” talk! We were happy and in love, and why on EARTH would you throw that away for some experience?

    I would say to not let his impending graduation loom over you. Have fun and enjoy being with him. If you wanted to, try the long distance thing for a while. If you can’t handle the distance, or you find someone that you like more- end it. Stop worrying about what might happen and just start rolling with the punches.

    Also, think about how ridiculous the term “dating experience” means. Like you somehow get better at it with quantity (like riding a bike)- because seriously, if that were true Elizabeth Taylor would have been some sort of relationship guru. It’s all about QUALITY. And if you are happy with him right now, that’s all you gotta be.

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    • iseeshiny February 2, 2012, 11:40 am

      Yes! All dating experience gives you is more ridiculous stories to tell at parties! I dated for a (relatively short) while before I met my now-husband, and all it did was give me a bunch of stories that start, “There was this one guy I dated who…”

      The only caveat here is that you have to know what you’re looking for in a partner. Some people when they date don’t gain dating skills but rather learn more about themselves, what they want and what they don’t want. If you already know what you’re looking for and believe you’ve found it it would be silly to leave that for some kind of belief that you can’t enjoy a good thing without having a basis for comparison. If you’re happy, it means you’re doing it right!

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  • oldie February 2, 2012, 10:16 am

    There is nothing wrong with marrying the only bf you’ve ever had. I know many happily dating and married people in this situation. They all had an instant rapport. Many of them, like you, didn’t date until they were in college. That doesn’t mean that they didn’t observe themselves and their peers and get a much better sense of what sort of person was right for them, than they had when they were in HS and still evolving their selves rapidly. My niece didn’t date anyone until she was into her second year of work post-college. She and her husband were introduced by a friend who thought they would be perfect for each other, and they really are.

    The problem is not that you haven’t dated anyone else, but that you have doubts. The doubts seem to be about spending the rest of your final two college years in a LDR, while those around you are pairing up with immediately available fellow students. Only you can know how well you can handle this, and likely you can’t know until you try. I suggest enjoying this semester with your bf and seeing how things are going at the end of the school year. If things are going great between you at that time, try the LDR, planning to discuss how things are going with your bf after giving it a few months, and possibly changing ground rules. You won’t know until the LDR begins how much you miss him and yearn for just him, or whether you find yourself strongly attracted to other guys on campus. The result of that test will tell you what you need to do.

    Your bf is older than you and seems to be thinking more of marriage than you are. That is likely the root of the problem. You have only a few months left in close physical proximity, and both are worried what happens after, with you additionally worried that he’s moving too fast on the marriage thoughts. In reading your letter, your worries seem as much aimed at what happens when you graduate as upon what happens when he goes to grad school. The mismatch on marriage timing can be enough to push you to MOA territory.

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  • Flake February 2, 2012, 10:43 am

    Two things.
    1. You are getting waaaay ahead of yourself. He hasn’t asked you to marry him, has he?

    2. You cannot date them all. There always be other, more interesting, better looking, taller, shorter, you name it, men in your life. You still will have to pick just one (unless you are into the open relationship thing).

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    Leroy February 2, 2012, 11:24 am

    I’m impressed that everyone hasn’t reflexively gone with the conventional wisdom on these matters – to break up, sleep around, and avoid commitment until you’re 30+. That’s what my generation (X) had inherited from the boomers and frankly it often didn’t turn out well. So it’s nice to see some fresh thinking.

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    Brad February 2, 2012, 11:25 am

    LW: The grass always looks greener on the other side and once to get over there you find out that it’s not really the case. All that matters right now is if you’re happy in the relationship or not (and it sounds like you are), so I think you should just relax and tell that voice to stfu.

    And I hate to break it to you, but it doesn’t matter if you date 1 guy or 100 guys, there will always be a tiny part in the back of your head wondering if you could have found someone better than your current partner so just ignore it. Try your best not to think about it and just enjoy the time you have with him in person. Worry about whether or not you want to be in a LDR in 6 months.

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  • mcminnem February 2, 2012, 11:36 am

    I so needed to read this thread today. I’ve been a major pain in the neck with my insecurities this past week or two. (Ohhhhhhh the insecurities. Sorry, sweetiepoo.)

    And you know what, LW? I’m the one with the experience. And this is two years in and living together. You just gotta roll with it. 🙂

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    landygirl February 2, 2012, 11:45 am

    He may be your first boyfriend, but that doesn’t mean he has to be your last boyfriend. It’s a big world and if you don’t want to confine yourself you shouldn’t. Love is great, love is grand but love isn’t everything. You’ve got your whole life ahead of you and limiting your options might cause resentment towards him in the long run. You’ve got to do what’s right for you.

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  • evanscr05 February 2, 2012, 11:56 am

    Here’s the thing. In 2-3 years, I can tell you, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that yes, you AND your boyfriend will be different people. You will have more life experiences to draw from that will shape you every step of the way as you age. It is natural, and necessary, to evolve over time. That does not mean that you will necessarily evolve into people who are, or aren’t, the perfect match. You may find that in 3 years you and your boyfriend have developed a deeper bond and strengthened chemistry. You may also find that you have grown apart and are on different paths. Either is perfectly okay. Don’t concern yourself with marriage and the future of your relationship quite yet. You are so young and the things that are important to you in a significant other now, may not be what matter to you in a few years. Just enjoy the relationship for exactly what it is in this moment. You’re job right now is to get a good education and to spend these precious 4 years learning as much as you can about who you are as an individual and how you want to fit into the world. Do not let a guy determine that for you. It has to come naturally. If you find, in the end, it wasn’t a good match, then take what you can about this experience and apply it to the next relationship. If you find that you have been able to grow together and weather any storm, then the fact that he’s your first boyfriend won’t matter.

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    SisterSoldier February 2, 2012, 12:53 pm

    I had to become a registered user in order to comment for the first time. The part of your story that stuck out to me was, being half Black and half Asian, and no one wanting to date you in high school. I’m half Black and half Lakota (Native American) and I remember only having one boyfriend in high school, he was Cambodian. Once I was in the real world, I realized that I wanted to experience dating people who could relate to me. This meant dating Black guys, Native guys, White guys, and everything in between. Different cultural backgrounds can make a person hesitant of staying with them; it may be due to family interjections or your own personal comfort level. Just remember, a man has to respect your background. My boyfriend is white and sometimes he just doesn’t get it when I’m having a “bad race” day. Sometimes I am blatantly discriminated against, not often, and I want to vent, and he just doesn’t get it. Yet, he is still supportive. Also, he’s not with me because he’s an “Indian lover” I just happen to be Native. Good luck and be aware of those who love the “exotics”.

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    Moneypenny February 2, 2012, 1:15 pm

    I can understand where you’re coming from as I have been in the same place myself. One thing I have learned is to just be present to the current relationship, and not worry as much about the future. Dating and relationships should be fun, and if you worry too much over the future, it won’t be as fun anymore. (I admit I am guilty of doing this all the time.) I agree with other posters to just enjoy what’s going on now and see how you feel at the end of the school year. If you are still having doubts, then listen to them and decide what will be best for yourself. As far as him being your first boyfriend, I know a lot of people who are with their first boyfriend, and are either happily engaged or married. My sister met her now husband when she was 20 (and was her first boyfriend). They’ve been together for 12 years and are expecting a baby in June. It just worked out that way for her. I on the other hand have dated a lot, but have had few relationships. This has helped me learn a ton about what I want for myself, and what I’m really looking for in a relationship, and to trust myself and my gut. (I also have some rediculously awesome stories.) I really believe that you have to trust yourself, and that you are not wrong to feel what you may be feeling.

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  • Bossy Italian Wife February 2, 2012, 1:43 pm

    If you wanted to marry this boy, the chances are that you wouldn’t thinking this way. I think that what you are feeling is perfectly normal for someone who hasn’t explored much in the dating world. That being said, don’t have too many expectations about the future, and just enjoy yourself (as other people have also expressed.)

    Don’t worry about what the future of your relationship may or may not be. You say you are going to give the long distance thing a try–so give it a try… hehe… the good old college try! Don’t over think things before you have to!

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  • Erica February 2, 2012, 1:48 pm

    I think it’s natural to wonder what it’s like to be with someone else (in general) while you’re in a perfectly healthy happy relationship. Once the wondering stops, and wanting begins, it’s time to think about moving on.
    It’s normal to wonder about other guys, but once you start to seriously think about what it would be like to date them or, once you start to feel like you’re missing out on something by not dating other people, it’s probably best to do so.
    Someone said it above, if you’re with the right person, you’d almost hate to think about being with someone else. You don’t need to think about “what if’s” because you have everything you want.

    I guess I’m saying you need to figure out if you’re just wondering what it’s like with other people, or if you want to be with other people. Because they’re actually different things.

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  • SarahToasty February 2, 2012, 3:24 pm

    My boyfriend and I were in a similar situation at the start of college, where we both felt so happy and compatible together but we had never been in relationships with anyone else. He ended up freaking out and breaking up with me because he was scared that he wasn’t “experiencing” enough.

    Six years later, I wished him a happy birthday which led to meeting to catch up to friends with benefits (because I didn’t trust him to not just bail on me) and now we’re happily dating again. My mom always says that everything happens for a reason. We needed the time apart to figure out what we wanted from a relationship and life and are stronger now because of it.

    I guess the basic gist is that sometimes things work out and sometimes things don’t work out and that’s fine too. If you are supposed to marry this guy, it will happen no matter the path. Until then, I say enjoy your boyfriend and sex on the regular before he moves.

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  • PFG-SCR February 2, 2012, 6:14 pm

    Given the short amount of time that you’ve been dating and the significant amount of time that you’ll be apart, I highly recommend that you agree to see other people after he moves away. There isn’t anything wrong with staying in contact and seeing one another and being physically intimate, if you’re both comfortable with that. If you two are “meant to be”, you’ll eventually end up together, and the break to being non-exclusive will just make both of you feel more confident that you are the right person for one another when you do get back together.

    My husband and I started dating in high school, and we went from being exclusive to non-exclusive for the time that we were separated because of college (he’s older). When we were in the same location again, we went back to being exclusive, and we (obviously) got married.

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    katie February 2, 2012, 8:58 pm

    it kind of worries me that you think that you will be marrying this guy. you have only been dating for 6 months and he is your first boyfriend. i understand that situation can and definitely does happen, but i just think your getting way way ahead of yourself thinking that he is “the one”. i also thought i was going to marry my first boyfriend, and i was totally wrong. thats just life, though, i think. we all want to believe that the relationship will never fail, never end, or whatever. i used to think about how great it would be to tell my kids that i met their dad in high school and that we had been together forever after that and bla bla bla…. lol you have to live in the real world, not in disney movies, you know? i think you just need to slow down and not try to map out your every step through life. live in the now, and if at any time you feel that you need to end the relationship, do it. as RR says, you have the right to MOA at any time for any reason. there isnt a checklist you need to accomplish before you can break up with someone. if you need to date other people you need to do that! and if you are happy right where you are, stay there.

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  • GTR February 2, 2012, 10:35 pm

    Oh pumpkin, you are getting WAY ahead of yourself. A lot can happen in a semester, especially at your time of life. It may be that in a year’s time you’ll be thinking, “OMG is it really six months since X and I broke up? It seems so long ago!”

    Enjoy your time with your boyfriend NOW. At the end of the semester, if you’re still together, compare your plans and his and see if you both want a LDR. Remember that a LDR doesn’t have to be an all or nothing proposition – you both may like to “see other people” while maintaining some level of relationship with each other.

    Be open and honorable in your dealings with the opposite sex, and you really can’t go wrong.

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  • Sarah February 7, 2012, 1:19 am

    There is no right or wrong answer for this, it’s such a personal thing. I’m currently with the only man I’ve ever dated [though I’d kissed a handful of guys before him] and we’re in an LDR with plans to move to the same city within a year and eventually get married. There are many girls I know that ONLY want to date one guy and have that guy be the one they marry. Then again, some of my friends have dated many guys and are grateful for it. It’s all about how you feel! If you think that you can say “Yes, this is the one, the person I believe is the best for me” then stop worrying about what other people think you SHOULD do [here I mean the LW’s older sister, but in a broader sense, the feeling that you SHOULD date more than one person or SHOULD have more than one boyfriend], and focus on what’s best for you. But if you know that you’ll regret not being with more than this one guy and possibly think that there’s someone better suited to you out there, then follow that too. Best of luck!!

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