Relationships and Nursing School

September 16, 2015

Hey everybody! Happy Hump Day!

So I don’t know about other schools or nursing programs, but mine and Megan’s school and nursing program seem to have a lot of people who are engaged. While we may have our own opinions on the idea of getting engaged/married while in college, I often find myself wondering how it is that people can even think about planning something like a wedding while in school.  I’ve been dating my boyfriend for about two and a half years now, and while we talk about marriage and what we want in our relationship, we both acknowledge that we are not ready to get married or even engaged. I have one year left in nursing school; I have to study and pass the NCLEX-RN, and find a job to start paying off my student loans. My boyfriend, who I’ll just call DC, is getting ready to enter his Master’s program in engineering a few hours away from me.

While we love each other, we both know that we simply are just not financially ready to get engaged. We are selfish in that we are working on building our careers and establishing the foundations for a successful and rewarding life. Luckily, we are able to do it side-by-side.
I know it would not be possible to maintain a relationship, especially one that was long distance across the country for nearly two years, if it were not for clear, concise communication. It was hard when we were both busy, and just did not have the time to talk. I wanted to be able to share about my day or my clinical experiences, but time zones and schedules did not always accommodate. Needless to say there were a lot of petty arguments due to the lack of communication. What was actually helpful in that, was that even though we were apart, we learned how we each fought. This actually made the time we did have together that much more meaningful. We could clearly express our feelings and frustrations, move on, and enjoy our time together, despite what little time we did have.

At the end of the day, I did not always get in the study time I should have because I wanted to skype or talk on the phone. However, DC knew I was busy with nursing school, so he understood when I told him I really could not take the time to skype, especially in the wake of an exam or final.

Patience and understanding saved us from a break up a couple times in the last two and a half years. I think like anything else, relationships in nursing school require time management and sacrifice. For me, that was a lot of sleep I missed out on. But looking back, it was all worth it because we were able to grow together, and I had someone outside of my nursing world to talk to about anything other nursing.

How do you maintain relationships in nursing school? Is there anything that has helped you find balance between an actual personal life outside of classes or jobs? Please comment and share, we would love know!

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