A reader writes in with a problem: His girlfriend wants to live in the country, and he wants to stay in the city. A suburban compromise won't do.
My girlfriend and I have only been together for about six months, but we already know that we’re going to make a life together, and we’re discussing marriage. The only problem is that I am passionately convinced that I need to live in a big city (such as the one where we live now), while she is adamant that she eventually needs to be someplace quieter and less stressful. We feel the way we do for professional reasons, as well as personal ones. She’s willing to go with my choice, for a time, as long as I return the favor later in life. And no, some kind of suburban compromise won’t do—it would just drive both of us equally crazy. But can we really make the time-splitting work? Is such a long-range plan realistic?