Though I’ve sworn off the Kardashian family and their fame-whoring ways, I have to say that I have respect for Khloe Kardashian. Through her hair extensions, spray tans and many sets of fake eyelashes, you can tell that she is truly committed to her marriage. Her husband recently got traded to the Dallas Mavericks. Whereas her sister Kim said she “would have to move” wherever (now ex) hubby Kris ended up, Khloe has only talked about how excited she is to make a home with Lamar in Texas. This means moving away from home, family, and work (I use that term loosely), yet Khloe keeps saying in various interviews, “I’m down for my man.” If I ever say, “I’m down for my man” then please slap me because that is such a ridiculous statement, but I think the sentiment is great. She values her career and work obligations, but knows that her relationship is the most important thing. Khloe talks frequently about how she has cut back on work to spend time with Lamar while he’s playing basketball. She’s also said that she tries to be at every one of his home games. Impressive.
Normally when I watch anything Kardashian-related I’m thinking, “Holy God. How do they wear so much makeup on a daily basis and not just have a giant pimple where their skin should be?” But this whole Khloe-Lamar thing got me thinking about compromises in a relationship. Compromises are tricky, especially for almost-grads or recent grads. The natural instinct is to take extremes. Either you want to completely dedicate yourself to a relationship and accidentally lose sight of your own identity or, on the other side of the spectrum, you want to focus too much on yourself and your career and risk losing a great partner.
When you’re in a serious relationship, you should be willing to compromise so your relationship can continue to grow. Don’t just assume that there are ten more great guys where this one came from. A trustworthy, loyal, kind, funny person who shares your values is a rare find. Kind of like when you’re going through a consignment shop and find a really funky piece of jewelry. Except a little more important. At the same time, you don’t want to start creeping over to the other side of the spectrum where you lose sight of your individual needs and desires because you’re trying to make your relationship work. A good relationship allows both people to keep fulfilling their dreams.
Khloe Kardashian is an example of someone who’s happily in the middle of the spectrum in terms of relationship compromises. I’m a little afraid to say that I think we can all learn something from a Kardashian but…I think we can. Khloe understands the importance of moving with Lamar and supporting his career. I’m assuming her first choice would not be to leave her well-established life in L.A., but she’s doing it because she loves her husband and puts their marriage as her number one priority. At the same time, she’s not completely giving up her career to be with Lam Lam. She’ll still be traveling for work and has said she’ll be back to LA frequently for business obligations. This way both she and Lamar can work on their careers, but they can also be together. Everyone wins.
Unfortunately, not all of us can be reality TV stars. Full-time jobs are difficult to find, and a lot of times you don’t have many options about where you’ll be moving. This is doubly hard when you’re in a relationship and are trying to balance two careers. When you’re thinking about your career and when you’re going to be after college ends (or where you want to go next if you’re already out of school) it’s important to consider yourself both as an individual and as part of a pair. Obviously you don’t want to turn down a great job just so you can be near your boyfriend, but you might not want to move across the country with no solid plans about when you’ll be in the same city again either. If you want to move across the country for your dream job, do it. Now is the time to build your career. But maybe you can agree that in ::fill in the blank:: amount of time he will try to find a job near you or you’ll try to find a job in the same city. Or maybe you only go if there is potential for him to have a job in that city. For example, if the only place he’ll be able to find work in his chosen field is in New York City then maybe your best bet is not to set up shop in Chicago. At the same time, if you hate L.A. then maybe he could choose to base his cool start-up out of another city. You don’t need to plan every detail of your new career around your significant other. You need to keep building your own career and life as an individual. If you get a good job and he’s still searching, take it. But you should consider whether your boyfriend/girlfriend would be able to be happy in your new city and whether he/she would be able to find work there. It’s also important to include him/her in the decision-making process when you’re job-hunting, and make sure you’re being included in your significant other’s job hunt too.
Let’s go back to the balance idea for a second. When you’re job-hunting and working on your post-college life, you should be building a happy existence for yourself as an individual as well as for you two as a couple. You should also make sure you have an easy out in case the relationship does end. For example, you probably don’t want to move to a foreign country with no job lined up so your guy can take his dream job. All of those things are fine as long as you’re excited about them, but you should be making your own money too. You don’t want to be dependent on someone else just in case something happens. What would Beyonce think of that? Come on, independent ladies.
How do you deal with job searching and compromise in your relationship? Do you think we could take a page or two out of KhloeK.’s book or are you more of an independent lady? Tweet me @lifewithlauren1 or find me at Life with Lauren.