DEAR HARRIETTE: My college boyfriend and I have been dating since freshmen year, and we just graduated. I have a job in Boston, and he has one in Chicago. We love each other very much and have even talked about marriage, but I'm not sure how our relationship can withstand the distance. We both tried to find jobs in the same city, but we agreed we were offered jobs that we could not pass up. Travel costs are going to be expensive, and the stress of not seeing each other won't be healthy for either of us. Is it better to end our relationship now, on a high note, or should we give a long-distance relationship a shot? -- Going the Distance, Nashville, Tennessee
DEAR GOING THE DISTANCE: Do not give up before you give it a try. Believe it or not, many couples that are truly devoted to each other have been able to weather the long-distance storm. It requires devotion, planning, budgeting and faith. You can build into your budget the funds needed to visit each other regularly. Using social media and tools such as FaceTime or Skype, you can stay in touch with each other daily to be able to share the machinations of your daily lives as they are happening.
It will be easier for you to schedule vacations and any time together with a plan. You must also make space for each of you to cultivate friendships and do your jobs. If you trust that you are the partners for each other and you want to stick it out, work to make that happen. Create a sign together, a code of some kind, that will let the other know if either of you feels the need to revisit the plan and make adjustments. That way, even if you eventually decide not to stay together, it does not have to be a surprise. You can work through that respectfully, too.