̶H̶i̶g̶h̶ ̶S̶c̶h̶o̶o̶l̶ ̶ Sweethearts

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Christina Salem, Reporter

     High school relationships are often credited with being short lived and juvenile. Statistics show that less than 2% of all marriages are from high school sweethearts, and almost 50% of marriages end in divorce according to the United States Census Bureau. Against all odds, some high school sweethearts stay together, including some of our very own teachers.

      Melanie McIntosh has been with her husband for 13 years. Fitting for an English teacher, McIntosh had an “enemies to lovers” moment. 

   “My husband and I didn’t actually like each other when we first met. He thought I was a goody two shoes, and I thought he was a wannabe rebel, like, not an actual rebel, he just wanted people to think that he was one. He was right, but so was I!” McIntosh said. “Underneath we were basically the same person, we were just pretending to not be.” 

   For Art teacher Clara Bruce, her 12 year long relationship started off on a slightly better note.

      “I actually knew him in middle school- my best friend had a crush on him in middle school. He’s really tall, so he was like the tall athlete, and we bonded over making fun of each other,” Bruce said. “He sat behind me in history class, and he broke his arm in soccer, and I was waiting for him to ask me to sign his cast, and he never did, so finally I got up the courage and was like, ‘Can I sign your cast?’ and so I, like, wrote my name really big with a big heart where he could read it.” 

      After they both started warming up to their partners, they had gotten gifts to commemorate their relationships.

      “We would hand write notes, so he gave me a music box to keep all my notes in,” Bruce said. 

   McIntosh had a different experience tied to her most favorite gift.

      “[My favorite gift I’ve ever received] is a board game that had to do with a TV show we both love and actually watched on our first date together. I joke that I fell in love with [Buffy the Vampire Slayer] before I ever fell in love with him,” McIntosh said. 

   With the development of both McIntosh and Bruce’s relationship, they had received advice that may also be applicable to relationships now.

      “This is advice that my mom gave me when Chris and I started to get serious, and I pass it on to anyone that I can. She said, ‘Melanie, don’t ever think you can change a man, so look at Chris exactly the way he is and ask yourself if you can live with that for the rest of your life.’ I think a lot of young people think like, ‘Well, he can change,’ and it’s like, well maybe he will change, but if he does, it’s going to be his choice, not yours,” McIntosh said. 

      So then what makes a relationship long lasting and strong enough to withstand fights and the tests of time?

      “I think there are a lot of marriages that end in divorce or separation. Sometimes, you know, there was something greater going on, but sometimes it’s just that they don’t feel that passion anymore, and so they feel like their love isn’t good anymore, and it’s like, no it just changed and developed, and you have to fight to bring back that passion,” McIntosh said. ”You’re never going to be the same person that you were when you fell in love with your partner, and so there may be some times where it’s more of a choice where it may be a little bit harder to love.”

 

https://www.census.gov/library/visualizations/interactive/marriage-divorce-rates-by-state.html