There’s no getting around it, long term relationships are hard. They need to be worked towards, and for the three years after graduating that’s exactly what me and Andy did. Just to set the scene, Andy is 27 and I’m 26 (toy-girl over here) so he graduated first and moved back to his home city of Leeds. He had a job for a year before being accepted onto the Teach First scheme, which then sent him even further away from me to Stockton-on-Tees. Once I graduated, I secured a job back home in Liverpool. There was absolutely zero point me moving to Stockton with Andy at this point as he knew that this place was not his forever home. We always knew that if things worked out post-uni (6 years later, he’s stuck with me now!) we would eventually move in together because three years of constant fortnightly trips was getting ridiculous. Finally when Andy finished Teach First and could free himself from Stockton, we knew the time was right to relocate together and it was so exciting!
Moving to a new place can be daunting, regardless of whether you are moving solo or with a partner. For me, moving to Yorkshire was one of the easiest decisions I’ve ever made. Initially, I must admit I was anxious. In hindsight, thinking about past relationships from when I was younger (ew, lets keep this bit brief!), I fear I was a little immature and naive in my decision making. Looking back, one of the reasons why I think I chose Newcastle as my university was because my boyfriend back then was based there and I thought it’d make it a ton easier. In reality, it probably hindered my experience a lot because I didn’t put myself out there enough to meet new people. The difference with Andy and the move to Yorkshire was that I wasn’t moving here for the boy, I was moving with him. Despite Leeds being Andy’s home town, it felt like a brand new adventure for the both of us and one that we could enjoy and create together (am I cringe or what?).
For anyone reading this who may be in a similar situation, whether you are relocating cities to be with a partner, or share a city and are moving in together, I would suggest the following things to consider before making the decision.
1)Be open and honest with your partner (Applies to both choosing a new city or choosing a house)-This is your time to decide what you want in your life moving forward and you definitely don’t want to be left with any regret. For me, it was a no brainer that we would move to Yorkshire. As much as I love Liverpool (we weren’t voted UK’s kindest/friendliest city for nothing!) and would miss my family and friends a great deal, for the past few years, I’d already lived 3 hours away in Newcastle so moving to Yorkshire actually didn’t feel too bad!
2) Job Prospects – Absolutely no point planning to get a mortgage, get married and have 3 kids before you even have a pot to you know what in! Luckily, me and Andy got the first jobs we applied for in Yorkshire so that problem solved itself (jammy aren’t we?). If we hadn’t though, we could have potentially ended up in a completely different place so it’s always good if you have a plan B (and maybe even C and D just to be on the safe side!)
3) Think about how each of you adapt to change – Relocating with a partner is a massive decision, one that some people just can’t face easily. It is so important to revert back to point 1 and be honest with each other and compromise to ensure both of you are comfortable with the decision and most of all, happy.
4) Assess how things are going in the relationship – Bottom line is, you need to have a solid relationship that you truly believe can withstand the stresses involved with moving cities. That’s only the first hurdle too – making the decision is one thing, actually living with the person is a whole new test in itself! (Prepare yourself for petty arguments about trivial things such as putting the bins out or buying milk. Ladies, this goes along with the reality of becoming overly comfortable with your other half- oh yeah, remember the days when you used to hold in poos when you saw your fella? Yep, well those days are long gone sister).
So there you have it, I took the plunge and if you think it’s the right move for you then you should too! I have fallen in love with everything about Yorkshire – the up and coming vibe of Leeds city centre, the beautiful vast countryside close by and most of all, the people. I really have made best friends for life since moving here and I feel like I have known them forever! The best bit about moving here is that I feel I have the best of both worlds. A wonderful partner, house and supportive family and friend network in Yorkshire, and right outside my doorstep, a mere hour or so away, I have my own family and home friends who regardless of distance, will always be in my life. For that, I am forever grateful ♡