Groundhog Guidance

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Groundhog Guidance

Dear Groundhog,

My boyfriend and I have a great relationship, and we have been dating for five months now. However, I am going to be in Rome this spring semester, and we have already been doing long distance this semester. 

We live in the same city and we will be spending our breaks together, and he is transferring to a school in the DFW area so we will be in the same area for college our junior year. 

That being said, long distance has been really hard on me, even though my boyfriend has provided me with sufficient love and care in the relationship. I am contemplating taking a break from our relationship while I am in Rome so I do not have to stress about his absence like I have this semester. 

On the flip side, he treats me like the way God treats me, with unconditional love and support. I literally prayed for someone like him, and I got him. What do you think? 

Signed,

Long Distance Gang

Dear Long Distance,

Relationships are hard enough when y’all are in the same place, and I’ll admit that communicating across a seven hour time difference can be rough, so I totally understand where you are coming from. 

I guess the question you have to ask yourself is if this person is worth the trouble of Wi-Fi connected Whatsapp calls in random European countries. If he truly treats you with unconditional love and support, he might be worth those calls.

Either way, you should make the decision that works best for you. If you do decide to end things, end it sooner rather than later and save both of you from more future heartache.

However, if you decide to continue the relationship, there’s nothing wrong with setting the expectation that communication will be more sparse because of all the complexities that come with the Rome semester.

In ye olden days people going on long journeys would ask their loved ones to wait for them. You could certainly ask the same of him. Promising him some sweet European souvenirs could help soften the blow.

All in all, four months is only a tiny fraction of your life. Trust me, your time in Rome will fly by! Make your decision based on whether you can see him in your life long term after those four months are over.

I’ve seen several long distance relationships survive the Rome semester and your relationship can survive too if you’re willing to put in some work.

Much love,

Groundhog

P.S. Enjoy Rome!

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Dear Groundhog,

As a non-STEM major, I’m absolutely dreading taking a science class next semester. I’m sure the feeling is mutual for STEM majors who have to take the other Core classes, but do you have any tips for surviving a class that you’re not entirely thrilled about?

Signed,

Right Brained

Dear Right Brained,

My biggest pro-tip for surviving classes that may not be in your wheelhouse is to lean on your friends for help. 

Surely you’ve met at least one or two STEM majors in your other Core classes. You could offer a sort of intellectual bartering relationship. I’ve certainly been known to trade help on understanding a scientific paper for help writing a paper or two.

Additionally, while you do have to take science classes, you can pick which ones sound interesting to you. From forensics, marine biology and astronomy to baby bio and gen physics, there are all sorts of options that you can explore.

Although it may be intimidating to be the one non-science major in an upper level elective, that may be the class that ends up being the most fun for you!

Even if you can’t find something that you find interesting, try to frame the class as a great way to expand your knowledge. Maybe there’s a way you can use this new knowledge in light of your own major.

Go get your lab coat!

Groundhog

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Dear Groundhog,

What are the best ways to fight sleep when you can’t drink caffeine? I recently can no longer handle caffeine (it almost makes me bounce off the walls. I’m not kidding). But now I struggle to stay focused and awake during my night studies. Help!

Signed,

Both me and my eyes are tired

Dear Tired,

First of all, mood. I think we can all relate to being tired, especially at this point in the semester.

Not going to lie: I’m a bit of a coffeeholic myself, so I’m still rather reliant on caffeine, but there are a few non-caffeinated tricks I can give you.

Taking a cold shower — or even just splashing cold water on your face — can be an easy way to wake you up quickly.

In terms of sustenance, I would suggest avoiding heavy meals if you’re planning on staying up late. I know that I certainly get sleepy after eating hearty comfort food (curse those heavenly mashed potatoes).

I also once heard that apples are good at keeping you awake. So maybe try including some more fruit in your diet? 

If all else fails, you could just try to get a regular sleep cycle. This may come as a shock to some college students, but you do need to get good sleep in order to not be tired.

Now I want to go take a nap… Maybe this is your sign to go take a nap too.

Sweet dreams,

Groundhog

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