Should I Turn Down A Job To Be With My Long Distance Boyfriend? Ask A Pro

By The Head Pro

Dear Pro,

This guy and I have been dating/hooking up for a couple of months. Things were pretty casual until he asked me to go boating with him & his buddies on a three-day weekend.The night before the boating trip we ran into each other at a banquet (a lot of people brought dates but he didn’t ask me). I invited him to dance but he refused. Later we boarded the bus back to campus and I told him he was being a jerk.

That night when we were frustrated-hooking up, he slapped me then immediately started saying he was “so messed up.” He said he was sorry he wasn’t treating me with the respect I deserved, that he lived with a bunch of alpha-males, and that he never talks to anyone about his problems. He also said our friends were so different (he’s a lax captain and I’m more outdoorsy).

The next morning I texted him saying I didn’t want to spend the weekend with someone who couldn’t treat me with the respect I deserve (something something, betch with standards, etc.) He called me and told me he was just drunk, and that he’s “willing to try.” Long story short, I went on the trip, spent three days drinking/rolling with him & his buddies, and came home dehydrated and confused. We had a great time, but sitting around the campfire he told me he didn't want to show too much PDA. He invited me to his lax formal this week, but when I asked to hang out sober before then, he just said to hit him up whenever.

Help me out HP– I don’t want him to be my shady almost-bf anymore. Does this guy actually care about me, or am I just a girl he can occasionally dump his feelings onto w/out commitment? He’s had enough time to get to know me. What's keeping him from asking me to be his girlfriend?


Impatient Bish

Dear Impatient Bish (?),

Wow you’re, uh, really just gonna gloss over the whole “he slapped me” thing, huh? And this happened in the midst of coitus, presumably a fun time! Usually a woman will deal with all sorts of shit-headed behavior, and it’s only when the guy breaks down and puts his hands on her that she’s finally all “fuck this, I’m out.” You, on the other hand, get assaulted and THEN put up with shitty behavior, and you’re asking me why he’s not trying to cuff you up? Think about that.

Not hitting a woman is the easiest thing in the world. It’s been AT LEAST 15 minutes since I’ve done it. Living with a bunch of “alpha-males” isn’t a good excuse for why you just hit someone. I was in a frat in college, and yet somehow I managed to wade through all of that testosterone without slapping anyone. He didn’t freak out and hit you because he lives with too many dudes, he hit you because he’s human garbage. I don’t know why, but lax bros are always the fucking worst (probably has something to do with no one giving a shit about their weird sport).

This guy is clearly just using you as a fucktoy/arm candy when it’s convenient for him. The fact that he can get drunk and use you as a punching bag and pseudo-therapist is just an added bonus for him. Do not hang out with this person. There are plenty of other guys who will not be embarrassed to hold your hand in front of their friends.

Nonviolent Kisses,

Head Pro

Hi Head Pro,

My boyfriend and I graduated last spring and are both job searching. Right now, we both live at home with our families, me in DC and him in New York. Our plan was to get jobs in the same city and move in together (we've been dating a year and a half, best friends for four). I feel totally confident that we're ready to live together. But - he just got rejected by a job he really wanted in DC, his last lead in the city, and is probably getting an offer in New York soon. At the same time, I just got called in for an interview at an incredible firm in DC. It's a top law firm and would position me to get into a really prestigious law school in a couple years. He's had a really hard time finding a job (I worked this summer so I've only been looking for a month; he's been looking for four or five months and it's been really rough on him). Other than this job in NY that he might get an offer for soon, he doesn't have anything on the horizon - no other leads or anything. I would be really happy to live in NY with him, but if it comes down to it, it would be shitty to turn down an offer from this DC firm. And I know a lot of people in law in DC but none in NY making the job search a lot less promising there.

I guess my question is whether it makes any sense to prolong our long distance relationship indefinitely. I know we're great together. We're both really happy. I can't imagine life without him. But distance is really hard. I miss him all the time. We'll both be living on entry-level salaries, so financially, taking a train or bus to visit each other all the time will be really hard. And we'll be living on our own for the first time, ever - I imagine we'll want to really live in the city we're living in, making friends and being people and stuff, not traveling every other weekend or whatever. I don't think distance works without some sort of plan to end up in the same spot; I don't want to do distance indefinitely. But if we start at new jobs in different cities that plan will have to get postponed for a really long time. And our relationship is great and really healthy. I'm happier than I've ever been, I feel really stable, and I see us lasting. I don't want to put something so valuable on the back burner.

Would it be more stupid to turn down an incredible job offer, or to jeopardize a really incredible relationship and live in transit all the time? I want to choose him. Is that like really dumb? 

Thanks so much, you're awesome and probably really good looking,

Mulan (cause she goes the distance)

Dear Mulan,

Ugh, this sucks. There are no good answers here. It would be asinine to tell you turn down your offer and take whatever you can get in NY to be with him. But, it would be even more asinine to say that your first job is somehow more important than a relationship that makes you happy. You’re spot-on when it comes to the distance thing, on all fronts. I know because I’ve done it and you’re right, it’s neither fun nor sustainable.

One trick the both of you can try is to casually swap addresses on your resumes when applying for jobs in the other person’s city. Generally speaking, employers don’t want to deal with the hassle of scheduling interviews with out-of-towners when there’s probably someone local who’s just as good (especially true of recent college grads with no experience). That would probably up his chances of getting an interview exponentially, because DC is a terribly insular town. For you, if all you care about is being a paralegal, are you sure you don’t know anyone in the law field in NY? I feel like you can’t throw a rock in New York without hitting a lawyer (I encourage doing this). Do you even need an “in” to get hired as a paralegal?

I think that if you can’t find something approaching an ideal solution (that is, a desirable job for both of you in either city), you’re still better off sucking it up and dealing with the long distance for a bit. Financial instability will absolutely WRECK a relationship, so either of you saying “fuck it” and trying to survive in two of the nation’s most expensive cities on one income would be a disaster. At worst, you’re looking at a year to build up enough experience so that it doesn’t look like you can’t hold down a job. Shitty, but doable. Resolve to visit each other once per month and have skype sessions a few times per week.

The only other advice I can offer is to try, however hard it might be, to keep some perspective. I promise you that nothing is actually as life or death as it seems right now. When I was 22 I was working towards a career as a golf pro (the golf course kind, not the Tiger Woods kind) and traveling every weekend to see the girlfriend I assumed I’d marry. Neither of those things worked out in the long run, and I’m doing ok. Whatever happens, you’ll be ok too.

Legal Kisses,

Head Pro

Got a question only someone as wise and talented as The Head Pro can understand? Email him at [email protected] and if your question doesn't suck you just might get a response. 




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