I am 20 and have been dating my boyfriend for almost 16 months. Our relationship has been great until recently. I have been going through a hard time at college and my grades are falling. I find it very hard to talk to my boyfriend about my problems as he is always too busy to listen. Our relationship is fading, and it's even driven me to be jealous and be suspicious of him cheating on me. I'm extremely confused and heartbroken. What do you suggest I do?
One of the pillars of a solid relationship is being present physically and emotionally for your partner. When one partner is experiencing pain and distress the other should be there to offer support and most times a listening ear is all that is required.
In your situation your boyfriend is too busy to listen to your school woes as he may believe that your concerns are not important and worthy of his attention. This is a big mistake on his part as now because of his disregard he has given you reason to believe that he might be giving his attention elsewhere which may not be the case.
When there is a communication deficiency in a relationship the assumption machinery cranks up and begins to generate ideas and thoughts that are destructive to the health of the relationship.
No doubt the tension in the relationship can negatively impact your schoolwork so you must try and manage the interaction between both. Start by sitting with your academic advisor and college counsellor and talk about the issues. It is of paramount importance that you complete your studies successfully as failing or dropping out of college should not be an option.
Sometimes in life we must make some tough decisions when we weigh the benefits against the costs. Which is more important to you right now, a sound education or maintaining a dysfunctional relationship? Unfortunately for some people the latter is of greater importance and so later in life they regret the decision that they made.
If you can't get through to your boyfriend by having a face-to-face conversation, then put your concerns in writing and just maybe he will respond to your cry for emotional support. If this medium does not work and he continues to ignore and disregard your plea then you may need to move on and concentrate your efforts on pursuing and achieving your academic ambitions.
At this stage of your life you really don't need to burden yourself with unnecessary stress. If Mr Mention is all caught up in looking after himself and has no time and space for you then this should be an indication that he is not ready for a relationship.
Take care of yourself and remain positive.
Wayne Powell is a relationship counsellor. Write to firstname.lastname@example.org. Check his Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/MFTCounselor/.