When we’re in nursing school, so many times we get caught up in an assignment, an upcoming test, or a study session with classmates. Add in the responsibilities of jobs, housekeeping and/or kids, and in the hustle and bustle of it all, we often forget or neglect our significant others. Or, if we don’t, we seem to value quality time with our bed more than our honeys.
However, our spouses/boyfriends/girlfriends can often be our greatest source of support and encouragement. We can’t let them down! Here are some strategies to enjoy each other, even with your busy nursing student schedule.
1. Schedule date nights. Make dates with your lover, and don’t blow them off, either. Scheduling a few hours once a week or every other week, or even once a month, to focus on each other will help you to reconnect. You can make your date night out or in—the important thing is to put the other stuff aside and focus on being together.
2. Have mutual study/work sessions. My boyfriend and I have used this one many times. If you’re both in college, or if your sweetie has some work-related business to attend to from home, work together! It doesn’t matter if he/she is also in nursing. I highly recommend going out to a coffee shop together to work. Have your S.O. quiz you on some NCLEX questions and, in return, offer to proofread their essay. Take turns explaining concepts from your classes to each other. Your partner can be a great asset to and champion of your learning!
3. Do and appreciate the small things. The biggest problem I’ve seen in nursing school relationships is that the nursing student side of the relationship stops giving, while expecting to be given more. Who hasn’t heard after a long clinical day, “I can’t wait to get home and crash on the couch, and make the hubby take care of the house and kids”? While it’s totally okay for your better half to pick up some of your to-dos when your plate is full from nursing, remember the importance of you doing little things, too—taking his car through the car wash, making dinner for her one night. And, by all means, don’t forget to show appreciation for all the extra help you’re getting from your S.O.!
It’s important to remember our partners, even during the demanding course of nursing school. They’re often our biggest supporters, and we owe it to them not to neglect our relationships. If you make an effort to spend time with your lover, and remember to continue contributing to the relationship and appreciating your honey, you’re well on your way to maintaining a happy relationship even among all the stressors nursing school throws at you.
Bolana Fuge-Hary is a full-time nursing student at a community college and runs a nursing-school-related blog here.