College romances: Finding a way to make it work

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It’s that time of year that lovers relish and singles despise.

Valentine’s Day may not be for another week, but the anticipation is forced down students’ throats, along with school work.

That’s exactly the dilemma that students and husband and wife Brittany & Josh Comninellis deal with. Being a student and being in a relationship are two very complicated tasks. They both involve a lot of physical and emotional effort, making it so difficult to balance the two.

“One thing that helps is starting class at the same time” said Josh, who just married his wife, Brittany, last June.

The married couple agrees that this semester was much easier than the last.

“Half the time, I’d be getting to class and she’d still be asleep,” Josh said. But the couple is still determined to find time out their busy schedules to be together. “You have to make it a priority,” Brittany added.

Sophomore Convergent Media major, Stephanie Dilley, deals with very similar struggles.

“It’s pretty frustrating at times,” Dilley said. “My boyfriend and I go to school together and even work together, but I don’t consider that spending time together.”

What the Comninellises and Dilley deal with is very common among several couples at any campus, and not just at Missouri Western. Sustaining a solid academic standing while keeping up a serious relationship is a true balancing act. At this time of year, couples are pressured to do something extravagant and unforgettable for their significant other. But with these strenuous schedules, it’s rather easy for a student to constantly stress over this time of year.

The Comninellises are headed down two completely different career paths. Brittany is a senior, majoring in Psychology, while Josh is a junior, majoring in Theatre & Cinema.

“If you’re not in the other person’s field, you still have to care about it,” Brittany remarked. “For a while, Josh made me be really interested in film, but it just made me hate it.”

However, Josh said Brittany wanted to help after he stopped pushing her into film.

Unlike the Comninellises, a lot of students try to date within their department to avoid conflicting schedules and interests. Dilley is majoring in Convergent Media while her boyfriend is majoring in Marketing.

“It’s a little weird because we both know so much about something the other has no clue about,” Dilley said. “It’s nice to have separate interests.”

Yes, being in college can be a struggle. Yes, keeping a stable relationship can be a task of utmost difficulty. So keeping both together is an achievement much desired. We see several relationships fail because of this. A lot of couples don’t get to spend all that time together and they either lose the affection for one another.

However, students, like Josh, can find a way to make it work.

“If you have time at the beginning of the day and the end of the day, that’s all that matters.”

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