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In this week's episode of New Girl, Schmidt continues to struggle with the consequences of dating two girls at once as he questions himself, as well as everyone around him, whether or not he is a good person. A scary man drops off Nick's father's estate – a bag full of $8,000 – and Nick starts to spend it all frivolously. This scares Jess, since he has so many bills and debts to pay off, and she secretly uses his money to pay off some of what he owes. A big fight ensues when Nick finds out Jess is trying to change him.
This episode brings up a common issue in relationships – can you change your significant other? And should you even try? Trying to change someone is a hard thing. In the end, you really can't change a person. People ultimately need to change themselves, which means they have to want to change. At first, Nick doesn't think he should have to change, and he gets mad at Jess for trying so hard to fix different aspects in his life. He yells at her, saying, “Are we ever going to get to the point where you stop working on me? This is me take it or leave it. I'm not changing for anyone.”
Jess can't change Nick until he embraces the change himself. She finally sees that and writes him a check for the money she spent. She decides to support Nick in whatever he wants to do, and does the responsible thing, hoping he'll follow suit. In the end, Nick decides to open up a bank account with the check. He actually wants to be more responsible, because he wants his relationship with Jess to work out. In an endearing moment, he says, “I realized something. I'd do anything for you, Jess.” But Jess realizes she doesn't want to change her boyfriend completely and she fights the eight dollar processing fee for him.
I used to get involved in relationships with guys who I was constantly trying to change. If I didn't like something about them, I would try my hardest to make them change, and it would always lead to a big fight. When I finally found the perfect man, he chose to change himself for me. However, I worried that in the long run his changing for me would eventually take a toll on our relationship. Most relationships change people. In a healthy relationship, your partner will change for you when they're ready. And change isn't always a bad thing – people do change with time, and that's okay - as long as both people in a relationship are staying open and sincere.
The fact is, a relationship takes a lot of work. They won't work out if you don't actively work every day with the other person, listening to them and practicing open communication and honesty. It can't be all take and no give, there needs to be a common ground between the two.
In the last New Girl episode, “The Captain,” Nick finally opens up and shares an abundance of feelings. Now, he realizes he needs to be more responsible. Nick and Jess' relationship continues to grow – what milestone will they reach next?