How long can long distance last?
Probably, most of us have been involved in a long-distance relationship at some point in our lives. Whether your boyfriend moved far away to take a better job or you met the perfect girl online (perfect except she lives in Boise!), you decided you’d give it a try. It’ll be hard, you told yourself, but I can do it.
Yeah? How’d that work out for you?
It probably sucked. You were probably miserable, and so was your partner. You kept at it because it’s hard to give up on something … but eventually, you succumbed to the inevitable breakup. I don’t blame you. Long distance is never fun, and it rarely works out. But if you do find yourself in that situation, here are some tips I’ve picked up through my personal experience.
1. Have a Plan
You and your partner hate being separated – so the first thing you have to do is to make a plan about when and how you’ll be physically in the same place. Schedule visits and count down to them together. And start putting plans in place for moving to the same city. Long distance should be temporary. If you aren’t comfortable taking those steps, then long distance isn’t going to work for you – and you shouldn’t be doing it.
2. Stay in Touch
It’s a no-brainer that you and your partner should communicate daily while you’re apart. But you can – and should! – use all the different methods of communication available to you in our overly technologized world. Use text, phone, Skype, Facebook, even postal mail! My long distance love and I send each other messages through the dating site we both use, still.
3. Keep it Romantic
You can’t kiss your partner every day or slow-dance in the living room, so show your feelings in other little ways. Mail him a postcard, send her good morning texts, sing him a song via Skype, call her at noon so you can “have lunch together”. When my boyfriend last visited my apartment, he snuck a few tiny notes into secret places around it for me to find one at a time – they make my day!
4. Take Care of Yourself
Of course, taking care of yourself is an important part of enjoying any relationship, but it becomes extra important when you’re in a long distance situation. Because your partner isn’t looking out for you like he normally would, you get to do it for yourself! Staying home every night wishing you were together isn’t healthy – so make plans with friends, join an activity, and work on a hobby once in a while. You’ll be a happier person and you’ll have lots to share with your partner when she asks about your day.
5. Strengthen your Partnership
Relationships have a natural forward progression, and that shouldn’t stop or regress just because you’re physically apart. Keeping your feeling of partnership is vital. Include each other in decisions just like you always did. Ask for your partner’s advice, and give him your own. Plan your future together. You can even do something simple, like rent the same movie from Netflix and watch “together” over the phone. Anything that makes you feel closer will help you get through being apart – and that’s the goal.
After all, what good is a great long distance relationship if you’re not going to be together soon? Until then, hold on to these tips – and hang in there.