I sighed as I hung up the phone.

My head was filled with questions. Is losing a little sleep to stay up and talk to his girlfriend that hard?

I had gotten mad at my boyfriend of almost 8 months…again.

In the beginning, it was sweet like any other teen love. However, as the relationship got more serious and prolonged, we, like any other couple, faced challenges.

I was the type of person who could pull all nighters and be fine the next day in school. My boyfriend on the other hand, needed sleep. During our honeymoon phase, we talked all through the night, eyes glued to our phones. But slowly, my boyfriend began to value his sleep over talking to me at night and left me sulking on my bed coldly typing goodbye. I interpreted his want to sleep as a sign of carelessness. But he wanted to sleep so he could function properly to see me the next day.

After repeated episodes of the same occurrence, we came to a conclusion that we simply could not have everything we wanted. I could not have both a late-night conversation every night as well as an energized boyfriend during the day. I was constantly selfish for his love while he simply could not make everything happen.

Love is funny– people go through the same rabbit hole of getting in conflicts and feeling upset, then choose to go through it again. In a relationship, two people with different mindsets, values, and beliefs are committed to forming a strong bond with one another. Conflict is inevitable. People learn through the conflicts that they go through, learning more about how to accommodate their significant other. After learning through clashes about what needs to change, both sides of the relationship should be able to make sacrifices.Your opinion is not always wrong, but it will be harder to have a healthy relationship if you stay stubborn and ignore your significant other’s opinion. Change is vital to maintain a good relationship. Be flexible about some things for the relationship whether it be the way you think, or personal time, or a habit. Pick your battles, and yield where you have to.

Focus on little things that you are willing to give up for your significant other. Changing those small things and communicating the problems you have about each other will lead to a stable relationship. Failure to communicate can make compromise harder, and eventually cause the issue to snowball into deep-seated conflict.

It would be a lie if I said my boyfriend and I did not fight anymore after realizing the importance of compromise. We did learn to compromise–he offered to stay up a little more longer while I offered to be more understanding about his need for sleep. Despite this lesson, we still fight–humans are selfish and stubborn like that. However, we try to tell each other what we did not like about each other’s actions and things that we could try to change for each other. At the end of the day, we know that love will bring us back to where we were before the fight or to a better place.  

Relationships are not easy. We have to constantly make an effort to accomodate and try to understand where the other person is coming from. It is important to realize that your significant other may have different values than you and has a reason for doing things that may upset or puzzle you. Romantic or platonic, talking about issues and compromising to make the relationship work is the key to maintaining any type of intimate relationship.

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