Dear Miss Emily: I have been with my boyfriend/fiance for almost 8 years, now, and 4 years ago he decided to join the marines. He is very, very big on changing the world, and going to war sounded like a great thing to do for his country. But it has been very, very difficult on our relationship. All his time is devoted to the marines. And none of it is devoted to our relationship. We talk about getting married and moving forward. But how can we when things just seem to get worse? I have talked to him and he says things will get better. But they don't seem to improve like I want them too. Is it just some crazy fantasy that i am having? That i just want things to be how they were before he joined the marines? We love eachother I mean I am head over heels in love with him. I live eat and breathe for this man. But living in two different states and always coming second to the military is love going to be enough to make this relationship last? -----------------Miss Emily's advice--------------- You know, when a man (or woamn) gets that calling to serve his (or her) country, it tends to put real life on hold, and that often includes the people they love who are waiting back home. However, that's no excuse for you to live in suspended animation until his need is fulfilled. I would tell him that plans must to be made for the future, and you want to get started. Include him on marriage plans -- the date, who is invited, and where you are going on the honeymoon. If you love this man as much as you say, the time he has left pales compared to the eight years you have devoted your life to him. You two have lasted this long, and it would be a shame to not take this to the finite; especially when he's about to face the strain of a protracted war in Afghanistan. You are frustrated, I understand. But don't let that frustration ruin a good thing. If he's not on board with helping you with these plans, only then would I doubt his sincerity in keeping his commitment to you.