What to Do If Your S.O. Is Graduating This Year and You're Not

Sometimes graduating isn't all it's cracked up to be.

Sure, the ceremony that marks the end of your high school career means moving on to the next phase of life, but if someone's S.O. still has some time to go before they finish senior year, graduation could represent a pivotal and difficult turning point in a relationship.

Do you acknowledge you had a good run, call it quits and go your separate ways? Or do you try to whether the storm and continue your relationship despite being in two very different places in your lives?

If your S.O. is graduating this year and you're not (or vice-versa), keep reading for some helpful tips on how to handle this tricky situation.

Know Your Options

You may think there are only two options available to you under these circumstances: break up or stay together—but the reality is that the situation isn't quite as black and white as that. For example, while calling it quits or remaining an item are the two most obvious choices, you could also opt for something that's a bit less defined, but works for you.

Maybe you agree to dissolve the romantic aspect of your relationship but decide to remain friends, or perhaps you agree to have a more open relationship that lets you stay in each other's lives but doesn't limit you in ways that a more traditional partnership might. Just keep in mind that since more open relationships are much harder to define, it's crucial that you're both on the same page here in order to avoid misunderstandings and hurt feelings.

Rachel Berry Graduates in Glee
(Glee via FOX)

 

Have a Candid Conversation With Your Partner

If you're facing this predicament and wonder what to do, one of the first steps you should take is to have a candid and detailed conversation with your S.O. Be open and honest about how you feel, and give them time to explain where they stand as well. You may find that you're both on the same page in regards to the future of your relationship (yay, you!), or you may realize that one of you isn't ready to let go just yet.

If that's the case, you'll likely need to have a more in-depth chat about your varying thoughts, and if you aren't able to come to a place where both of you agree, a breakup could be the best course of action. Though that will undoubtedly be tough, keep in mind that there's no shame in ending a relationship if you and your partner no longer see eye-to-eye. In fact, saying sayonara under those circumstances is often healthier than dragging something out just because, and it will likely be easier on you both in the long run. Whether you're the one leaving or staying behind, you now have more freedom to discover who you are and what kind of partner you want.

 

Create a Schedule of Some Kind

If you and your S.O. do agree to stay together post-graduation, try to create a schedule of some sort that allows you to stay actively involved in one another's lives. That means you should plan times to talk on the phone, FaceTime and, if distance allows, see each other in person. This may sound boring and mechanical, but if you really want to give your relationship a fair shot at surviving this obstacle, it's going to require some strategic planning from both parties. Unlike when you and your partner roamed the halls of your high school hand-in-hand, you now need to make a concerted effort to be in one another's lives.

Elle and Noah Say Goodbye in The Kissing Booth
(The Kissing Booth via Netflix)

 

Put in the Effort

Speaking of effort, it's not enough to simply say you'll call, FaceTime or whatever else. Now, you actually need to follow through on whatever expectations you put forth. If you've set up times to chat on the phone every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, for example, it's crucial you stick to those plans. Once you start to renege on your commitments to one another (even if it seems like something minor), your relationship will begin to falter.

That said, seeing as how you're both leading very busy lives filled with friends, schoolwork, sports and whatever else, it's unrealistic to assume you'll be able to stick to every phone date or planned trip to see one another. If and when you have to reschedule one of those events, be as open and honest about it as you can. Your partner will (hopefully) understand and you'll be able to find a different time to check in. Spontaneous texts, calls, or even flowers are never a bad idea, either!

 

Be Realistic About the Future of Your Relationship

If you've been giving your relationship a real go after one of you graduates but you just don't feel like it's working, be honest with your partner about that. Maybe you've realized you have different interests or you see that your future goals no longer align the way they once did. That's perfectly fine. Not all high school relationships were meant to last, and in fact, most fizzle out over time on account of personal growth and change. Again, so long as you feel like you've put forth a concerted effort, there's nothing to be ashamed of in calling it quits.

Rory Gilmore Graduates
(Gilmore Girls via The CW)

 

For more relationship advice, click HERE how to deal when your dog doesn't approve of your S.O.