I'm a senior in high school. My girlfriend, who is also a senior, goes to the same school. We've been together for almost a year now and we really love each other. We've even talked about getting married some day.
This year, my uncle gave me and my mom a wonderful Christmas present — a two-week trip with him to France and Switzerland. This will be my senior trip after I graduate this May. This is like a dream come true for both of us. Mom always said, if she ever won the lottery, we'd go to France. That seemed like the only way we'd ever get there. She is so excited, she can't stand it.
My girlfriend isn't so excited. See, before this happened, we were planning to go on our senior trip together to Florida. We've been working and saving up for it. My girlfriend says that if I go to Europe, she will go to Florida with someone else. I'm pretty sure she means another guy, and believe me when I say she would have no trouble finding one. Although this is a trip of a lifetime, I would give it up for her, except for one thing: I'm planning to go to college in California. She's set on attending the University of Memphis. If I get an offer from USC, as I hope and believe will happen, is she going to threaten to break up with me if I leave Memphis to go to school?
I don't want to give up my trip or my dream of USC, but I don't want to lose her, either.
-- Lost and In Love
Do I even have to answer this question? Of course, she's going to leave you if you go to USC. You are in love with a manipulator, and I seriously doubt she is in love with you. She's in love with controlling you. Five-to-one you never know if you're going to see her until right before you see her. How many weekends has she left you hanging while she tried to make up her mind who will be more fun — you or her friends?
Take the trip. While you're there, meet new people. Fall in love. Expand your horizons. Learn something new. You'll come back older and wiser than just two weeks, and that probably scares her to death. She won't be able to control you anymore. When you come home, she'll either be there or she won't. If she's still there, enjoy your summer together, then go to USC and meet someone new. Don't let anyone hold you back. There's a million girls out there.
If you give up your trip, if you stay home for this girl, if you end up marrying her, you're going to be divorced in five years. Guaran-damn-teed. Either she will leave you for someone more exciting, or you'll get fed up with her games. At the end of those five years, you'll have nothing but heartbreak and regret, and maybe even the crushing financial burden of child support payments. If you go on this trip, and if you go on to USC, five years from now you'll have a degree and your whole life ahead of you.
And when you're my age, you can hook back up with her on Facebook, or whatever they have by then, and thank your lucky stars (and your uncle, and maybe even old Jack here) that you got out while you still could. Trust me. Now go have fun. I wish I were you. Got a problem? Jack Waggon will set you straight: email@example.com