The Pros and Cons of Your High School Sweetheart

It sounds like a cliché -- couples who have been together since they were teenagers. But it happens quite a bit, and while high school sweethearts are lucky to have found their one and only early in life, there are also quite a few drawbacks. Here are a few of the great things about being high school sweethearts. You've known each other for quite a long time, so you're used to each other's quirks and know what to expect from each other. Unfortunately, many long-term couples don't last past college, when they're introduced to other people and ways of living. When sweethearts develop different interests as they enter different stages of life, it can strain the otherwise solid foundation on which the relationship is built. As a couple, you each may have missed out on living with other people, like roommates, or alone. It's easy for high school sweethearts just to skip that step and move in together.

These living arrangements and being together all the time can create a bit of a codependent dynamic and doesn't encourage independence. That said, neither of you will have too many dating horror stories to exchange with friends – skipping the "dating scene" can be a good thing! If you make it through the teens/early 20s, then you'll have seen each other at your best – and worst. Your shared history will ensure that you have empathy for one another and smooths your social path because you likely have the same friends. When it comes time for high school sweethearts to marry, it's likely to be earlier in life than others, which can be good or bad. But high school sweethearts ideally have discussed what they want out of life – education, career goals, children, and the like – so there are no unpleasant surprises down the road.