I’m Finally In A Relationship But I’m As Independent As I’ve Always Been

Going from the single life to being half of a happy couple is a major transition. When a new relationship is solid, it’s an easy shift – just lean into the romantic bliss of it all and not look back. But just because I’m with someone doesn’t mean I’m a different person. In fact, I haven’t lost an ounce of my independence. Here’s proof:

  1. My friends are still a huge priority. I’m not going to ditch my BFFs just because I’ve caught feelings and things happen to be going well. My friends are my family, my stability, and the source of my strength. Plus, I’ve dated enough people to know that at any moment everything could turn to crap, and I know my friends will be there to comfort me.
  2. I love my alone time. I won’t be doing every single thing with my new guy. I like being on my own. I’ve done it for a long time and it helps me recharge my mental and emotional batteries. So while I might be with them on date nights and lazy weekend days, I can still be found hanging out with my favorite person in the world: me.
  3. My career will never be shoved aside. I’ve worked too hard for too long just to sacrifice my professional aspirations for a relationship. If I’m with the right person, they will understand that, and hopefully have their own career goals to focus on.
  4. I still make plenty of decisions just for me. While I might seek advice from my boyfriend on bigger decisions, I’ll still make the final call. This is my life, and my future, and until I’m making decisions as part of a family, I will ultimately do what’s best for me, myself, and I.
  5. My partner will not become my entire life. I don’t intend to wait around for texts to make plans or cancel current plans with friends in order to go on a date. I won’t be at his place every second of the day that I’m not at work and I won’t be clogging up your feed with disgustingly cute couples selfies. That’s not sustainable, it’s unbearable, and it’s just not me.
  6. I will not change my values for someone else. I’m not about to change my political, religious, or human rights views in order to have more in common with the person I love. Our views don’t always have to align, but I’m not budging and I don’t expect him to either.
  7. My body is still mine. If I gain weight and he asks me to lose it ASAP, BYE. If I want a tattoo and he thinks tattoos are trashy, guess what? I’m getting a tattoo because I want to. When it concerns by body – because I only have one – I will do what’s right for me, no exceptions.
  8. Don’t assume I’ll bail on girls’ nights. Just because I’m no longer trolling for D doesn’t mean I wanna skip girls’ night. In fact, all of my previous flirting energy can now be used to be the best wingbabe ever and make sure my BFFs get laid.
  9. I’m not putting all my eggs in this basket. Look, this is the modern dating world. I don’t have a lot of faith that things will last. Everyone is constantly looking to trade up, so this could be over tomorrow. I hope it isn’t, but I’m not assuming this is forever until my guy and I truly start growing together as a team.
  10. I’m still just me.I’m the same person I’ve always been. The only difference is that I now have a plus-one to any weddings or major events that require nice shoes and a seating arrangement. It’s great, but it’s not everything.
is a freelance writer for Bustle and Petcha, and editor for Wise Bread. She suffers from separation anxiety, and can't bear to be away from her dog for more than 20 minutes. Her dog doesn't seem to care either way. Sweater season is her favorite season.