Hey, so here's the deal.
I'm 20 years old and my manfriend is 26 (we'll call him "L") and we have been together for two years. He has been with me through everything: the deaths of 3 very important people in my life, my struggle with bipolar depression, basically reinventing myself and becoming who I want to be, etc., and I love him very much and so does my family. This year so far has been a year of big change and I'm very happy with who I have become and I am very excited for everything coming my way. I've been working really hard in school so I can transfer to an acting school in NYC. I've been performing for a long time and I feel that this is what I need to do with my life. Don't get me wrong, L is very supportive of my dreams, but he flat out refuses to move with me.
I'll probably be living in a dorm for the first year or two that I am out there, so it makes sense that he wouldn't move right away, but he has basically made no plans for our future; he's totally fine with me moving and just having a long-distance relationship. It's not that I don't trust him or myself, but for some reason the thought of a long-distance relationship makes me really uneasy because he has no plans past that point. He's telling me that I'm kind of foolish for worrying that much and we just need to take a shot in the dark.
But I'm not so sure. I think he's just terrified of moving and won't admit it to himself. Even my parents--very level-headed and practical adults--think so. He lives in a house with his sister and they continue to spend money on a line of credit for things they literally do not need (a freezer in their basement, a new couch, etc.) and he has complained that he has too much debt here for him to move. He says that he might want to go back to school, but hasn't looked at any programs and doesn't even know what he wants to study. He constantly complains about his dead-end job, but in the two years that we have been together, has not found a new job. My uncle has offered to let him work for him (and to be honest, he would make a lot of money working for my uncle) but hasn't followed up with him, really. L is smart as F***! He's great with computers, has a degree in poli-sci, plays 6 different instruments, can sing, act, dances a little, and is generally just a nice and charismatic person. He uses maybe 10% of these skills at his current job and makes very little money for the amount and quality of work that he does.
He has all these fantastic qualities and treats me really well but everything mentioned above is so frustrating to me. And, we've been together for two years and his sister--whom he lives with--has only recently started to try to get to know me. My family constantly invites him to dinner, events, holiday celebrations with our extended family. I have been invited to his uncle's house only twice and trivia night at the bar. My family goes out of the way to make him feel welcome, and I feel like his family hasn't really done that for me and I don't know how to bring that up to him.
I just don't know what to do. He's extremely generous, romantic, caring, fun, supportive, and my best friend. However, all of this is weighing heavily on my heart and I'm not sure what to do.
First, as I am sure you have seen, you are two different people and thus will have two different views on different things. Close knit relationships and family seems to be a very important aspects in the way you were raised and what you continue to believe in. He, on the other hand, seems to not have had that bond with his family you may have had with yours. This would explain why you aren't comfortable with the long distance relationship idea and find it weird you hardly know his family after 2 years.
You may try putting yourself in his shoes for a moment, and look at it from his position. I don't think he's "fine" with you going away to school, I think he realizes you are accomplishing what you've worked so hard to get into, and because he cares for you he doesn't want to hold you back.
As you have been given room to stretch your wings, he also needs room to stretch his. Is it a thought that maybe by staying you can control his actions and keep him from making the wrong ones? You being there helps, but even living with him would not mean being able to have complete control.
In today's society it's important that you can learn to live together AND apart. Together you are under foot and apart you must trust. Both take considerable amounts of effort and are vital to a healthy couple's lasting. You both sound full of potential. Don't waste it.
Right now is the time to make yourself into the person you plan to be for the rest of your life. Set up your foundation. The being apart is just a minor coincidence. "L" must also see that his foundation is set and start becoming the person he needs to become.
Trees in a grove grow together, and that is what makes them strong against storms. Set your own roots and if his aren't right to set with yours, you will find out before those storms hit and you are grasping at thin air.