DEAR ABBY: My boyfriend, "Cole," and I have been together since college -- several years now. We have a loving relationship, but the problem is distance. My job sometimes requires me to take short-term (two- to five-month) contracts in other cities and overseas.
Even though it is difficult to be apart, I handle long-distance relationships relatively well while Cole does not. This began in college when I studied abroad for a semester. Cole tries to be supportive and wants me to be successful, but he takes it personally when I have to leave. For me, it's just about a job, but Cole doesn't see it that way.
I would support Cole wherever and in whatever he needed. Although it would be ideal to be together all the time, I realize that sometimes it isn't possible. Am I being selfish, or do we simply need different things out of a relationship? -- GLOBE-TROTTER IN DES MOINES
DEAR GLOBE-TROTTER: Are you being selfish, or is Cole being selfish? Are you willing to give up a career you have prepared for and work in so that he will no longer suffer separation anxiety? While your relationship is a loving one, the two of you have serious differences, and you must rationally decide which is more important to you. After that, everything will fall into place.