Hello all! I've lately found myself in a really awkward situation, so I decided to present my situation for some feedback and/or advice. Basically, I'm about to start my senior year toward a BA, and until March or so, had no idea what to do with it afterwards. I figured I'd get a job doing SOMETHING. My fiance, who I've been with for 4 years, is in a similar situation. He graduated last December with a BA in English, has no idea what to do with it, and has been working odd jobs like daycare, telephone sales, and home care for disabled kids. The two of us had planned to get married in September or so of 2005 (after I graduate next May).
In March, I had this revelation that I need to be a nurse (probably because my fiance kept catching me watching the Discovery Health Channel and finally said "Geez, if you like all that health stuff so much, why don't you go be a nurse or something?"). This has given me a goal, a direction, and a lot of enthusiasm for where I plan to be in a couple of years. I am thoroughly proud of myself for figuring out what I want to do with my life.
This, however, has caused a glitch. Because now I have goals and my fiance does not (we have discussed this at great length -- he has NO goals, period), I feel utterly detached from him. Additionally, when I approached him about the no goals thing, he told me that at least in part, he's waiting for me to choose a nursing school (we're young and portable enough that moving to a different state is an option) before he goes and gets a master's/teaching certificate/any number of possibilities he brigngs up from time to time. So now I'm holding up what goals he may develop, and that makes me feel just no good. But I'm half-thinking he's using that as a convenient excuse (because, after all, there was several months between the time he graduated and the time I decided on nursing where he was still doing nothing). I'm feeling trapped, frustrated, annoyed, and I've got this overwhelming urge to escape from my situation.
I have a close (guy) friend in Ohio who's been teasingly trying to get me to go to school near him. I think it might be a good opportunity for me, but I don't think my fiance would want to go with me (partly because we both know this friend has had a crush on me for a few years, and there'd probably be some tension between the two of them) or, frankly, would want me to go. Unless, of couse, I were single. But leaving a 4-year relationship is a very scary thing to think about.
On the other hand, I have done some research and found that Ohio is actually quite appealling. The cost of living is slightly lower than where I am now, the jobs pay about as well, and there's this spectacular clause in the Ohio board of regents residency policy where I can pay in-state tuition to go to school part time, and after 12 months be considered a resident. This is great because I plan to take prereqs for a year (part time) before starting a nursing program. So it would actually be very practical for me to go to school in Ohio.
So now I'm at a crossroads -- I can keep going down the same path I've been developing, get married in a year, probably stay in Kansas, and hope that my dear fiance discovers what he wants to do in life. Or I can leave everything behind me, start a new life in Ohio where I know I can achieve my goals without carrying around what I feel is a 6'5'', 230lb dead weight.
Am I absolutely nuts for completely changing my priorities and point of view over something like a career choice? I just feel like I could achieve so much more if I weren't in this relationship, and that really breaks my heart. I won't be able to really act on this until at least March (he and I live together and our lease expires March 1), but it's something I really feel I need to think about.
Jun 27, '04
A 'goal' isn't supposed to be a prison, somewhere you get to and then stay for the rest of your life. It's quite natural to chop and change your goals throughout your life, it's also natural not to feel the need to have goals, sometimes the idea of working towards a goal doesn't come until you are a lot older and suddenly that mid-life 'crisis' hits and you think "Gosh, I need to do something with my life!". That is precisely why there are so many older students at colleges - they are changing their goals, changing careers, embarking on new goals. Your boyfriend may just be at the stage where nothing he has tried has hit the mark, has sparked that fire in him that says 'This is what I want to do'. That is why he may be changing jobs all the while and trying new things - he's still trying to find himself, and that's OK (for him, anyway). However, his current lack of ambition is now opposing your enthusiasm for your new goals, and that is creating problems in your relationship with each other.
People grow, and as they grow they change - some more quickly than others. You are not the same people that you were when you met 4 years ago, and you have to decide whether the deeper, underlying relationship you have with him can survive these changes, or, whether you are starting to grow apart so much that it's time to move on. Sometimes maturity will change people, but occasionally people will go through their entire lives never really reaching that stage of maturity, and will continue to remain unmotivated and goal-less. Whatever happens, it is not your task to try to change your boyfriend, or to try and force him to become more goal orientated - only he can do that, and he may be just maturing more slowly than you
Reading your post - I think it's obvious what your heart is telling you to do, and life is too long to spend it being unhappy, and too short to waste time being unhappy - so go spread your wings
Best wishes, Paint.
Last edit by RNNoMore on Jun 27, '04