Long distance relationships are a difficult and often times lonely undertaking but when you’re in love you become willing to put in the work and sacrifice it takes to keep things going. All relationships can be challenging at times but the stress is magnified when you cannot be a physical presence in the day to day life of your sweetheart. That being said your relationship is not automatically set to fail just because there is a long distance separating the two of you. In fact, if you can keep the relationship honest, have open communication, and make time for your partner your long distance relationship has just a good a chance of surviving as with someone living down the street.
1. Communication is Key
Since the time you will be able to spend together physically is severely limited you will have to find other means of having contact with one another. Luckily for us we now live in a time of instant communication around the clock. Invest in an unlimited phone plan with unlimited texts and minutes. You would be surprised the calming effect just hearing their voice has on you and believe me it can get rather addicting so it’s best just to pay the money and be able to chat as much as you want. My plan only runs me $60 a month which isn’t bad considering it keeps my relationship going so the phone is one expense in which you really don’t want to be a cheapskate. There are also many other options such as Skype that can help you connect visually as well and since it is free there is no reason not to take advantage of the technology.
Also on the communications front, it is important to establish some kind of set routine about when and how much you need to talk to one another. If you try and talk to them constantly they may start to feel overwhelmed and annoyed. Remember they have a life to lead that goes beyond your relationship and a constant barrage of attention may only serve to push them further away from you emotionally. On the flip side you don’t want to let too much time pass in between calls or messages because it can send the wrong kind of signal. With my girlfriend we have a pretty set pattern of times when we text because we know that we won’t be at work or in class. We save phone calls for late night because it is a good way to vent our daily stresses and gives us something to look forward to at the end of the day.
2. Know What Your Relationship Is
If you think that you’re in a committed relationship while your partner see it more as an open relationship then it is doomed to fail. Talk about your feelings and encourage them to share what they want and need from the relationship. Don’t ever be afraid to ask the question of what your relationship is because otherwise you are just wasting each others time. Having the discussion will allow you to know exactly where you stand relative to one another and create a clear way to continue to move forward.
3. Don’t Stop Living Your Life
Being away from the one you love can physically make you sick sometimes but the fact is that the distance exists so you must deal with it. You cannot just shut down the rest of your life just to focus all of your attention on your significant other. It can be a benefit to have so much time for yourself because you can keep pursuing your goals, participating in the activities that you want, and still have fun socially. It’s rather freeing to have your romantic life taken care of and be able to go out and enjoy living each day as you wish to. Having other things going for you also helps to take your mind off of the physical separation which will completely take over your thoughts if you allow it.
4. Keep Your Jealousy in Check
All relationships can be boiled down to having trust in another person and long distance relationships are just taking that trust to its more extreme limits. In order for this to work you have to be able to let go of your worries and have a belief that your partner is capable of holding up their end of the bargain. There is going to be a tendency to get jealous because unless they are a total shut in, other people will be a part of their lives. Understand that it cuts both ways and that those who are involved in your life could be making them have similar jealous feelings. Of course it’s perfectly natural to have these emotions because you have little control in their lives so the best course of action is to work out your feelings inside your own head. Constantly bringing up jealousy is going to undermine your relationships trust and make them question if you can handle being together. Try to remember that they will always receive attention from other suitors but you are the one they chose.
5. Have a Future Together in Mind
Long distance relationships are not meant to go on indefinitely and at some point one or both of you will have to move in order to keep it alive. Knowing where you want to end up is important to keep things in perspective so it doesn’t seem like a torturous ride with no end in sight. Your plans don’t necessarily have to be detailed but discussing possibilities is always a good thing to be able to take the steps toward a life together. For instance, I know my girlfriend had plans on transferring schools before we were together and that within a year I’ll be done with school myself so that gives us a pretty solid time frame of when a move is possible and where we will be for however long.
6. Visit as Much as Possible
Depending on how far you live from one another and what your work and financial situations are like this can vary on how much of an obstacle it is to your relationship. Nevertheless, you need to see each other every so often to keep that spark between you and fight off any doubts that may be creeping inside your head. Having definite dates where you can see one another is a really good tool to keep your morale high and give you something to look forward too. When you do finally get to see them try to savor each moment together and avoid having pointless arguments. The time you spend together is special and you should treat it that way.
Long distance relationships don’t have to be so bad and if you put forth the effort to make them work they can be very rewarding. Being away from one another for such long periods of time and remaining faithful and happy should give you confidence that the two of you can thrive under any circumstances. It helps if you remain honest and straight forward about what you want to get out of the relationship and to focus on the goal of being together in the long run instead of the day to day drudgery of separation. You can have a bright future together you just have to be willing to fight for what you want.