By Megan Bartlett & Mary Husser
Only three percent of high school relationships actually last into college. Even less high school sweethearts actually marry. Even less stay together until their death bed. So why put in the effort now? Why do couples try, and what even classifies as a “good” relationship? What makes it worth it for couples if statistics say that they will most likely break up?
For most, high school is a period of time meant for experimentation and sharing laughter and memories. Adults look back on these years and recall the best time of their lives. Having someone there with you through thick and thin feels good. It’s nice to have your partner to talk to when you fail a test, or have to take on struggles. As hard as it may be for some to admit, the feeling of having someone to lean on is one of extreme comfort.
There are three distinct types of relationships that rarely work.
The first typically consists of two partners tied together simply because they want to be in a relationship with anything that moves, not caring about the person they are dating. Zero percent of these “relationships” survive after the rush of being with someone dies down.
The second reason a relationship may not last, although unintentional, is a partner using their significant other to make themselves feel better and give themselves a sense of satisfaction/reassurance.
An example of this takes the form of “I love you.” This overused term takes a beating and is used when it really shouldn’t. When a significant other hears “I love you,” for the first time, their partner may not necessarily believe it, but feel a sense of appreciation and self-worth that is not always sincere. They may utter those words back to their partner without giving them a second thought. This is a real issue.
The third reason for a relationship failure comes from the difficulty of achieving a level of trust with your partner that is equivalent to the loving relationship two family members share. Achieving this level of trust and ability to sacrifice everything for your partner is something rare. The problem is the second one may realize that the feelings they have for their lover can’t reach this level. It’s sad.
Another issue about high school relationships: high schoolers will be high schoolers. Your partner may be into things you aren’t, especially for the purpose of recreational use (i.e. smoking or drinking with friends) and as difficult as it may be to hear, attempting to make them change their habits may only push them away. This may have something to do with the fact that a friend will be around for years, while boyfriends and girlfriends easily come and go. In the mindset of the smoker/drinker, it may be unfair to try to permanently change their ways. The balance between what is acceptable to talk to your partner about and attempt to change and what should not be influenced is narrow and a real struggle to produce.
A high school relationship should be taken seriously and both partners should put as much effort into it as possible, show genuine care and concern and look after each other. Keeping in mind that most relationships end is important, but should not get in the way of a good one. If two people will last out of high school, it can be easy to tell. Enjoy the now and enjoy it as much as possible.