Stay Close In Your Long Distance Relationship

Long-distance relationships (LDRs) require commitment and work. That’s the obvious bit. But how do you do it?

photo by Robby Ryke

photo by Robby Ryke

I had a great LDR, despite being at a uni with six or seven females for every one male. If I hadn’t been interested in my relationship working out, it definitely wouldn’t have worked out!

At times like these, you have to assess what you truly want. The moment you’re not 100% happy with the idea is the moment you will wander off. Be clear from the outset for your own sake as well as for everyone else.

Writing about LDRs for Norwich student paper The Tab, Rachel Moss has some great advice. With lots of Skype, FaceTime, and Facebook available, it’s easier than ever for you to contact loved ones. But, as Moss says, you have to both want the relationship to work. And it’s not worth constantly checking their social networks or freaking out the second you don’t hear from them when you expect it:

“Stop being a Facebook stalker. It’s easy to overanalyse photos/statuses and think that your partner is having more fun without you. Step away from the laptop and have some fun of your own!”

Paranoia is pointless and needy is unnecessary. Natural development is much smoother. And if things are sadly not working out, you’ll see other signs of it without having to seek them out and panic at every last word uttered. Sometimes the paranoia and constant contact can be the main cause of discomfort.

My LDR started when I went off to university. Moss says her relationship started at uni and her boyfriend graduated. However your LDR begins, it’s best to deal with the situation up front, rather than vaguely ‘see how it goes’.

Are you in a long-distance relationship? Here are a few more of my own tips:

  • Let life without you (and life without him/her) continue – You’re allowed to have fun. So is your partner. Just because you aren’t in each other’s pockets doesn’t mean you have to mope around until you next see them. And you shouldn’t expect that of your partner either. If they’re having an amazing time, that’s great. It’s nothing to do with you being somewhere else. Would you wish unhappiness on your other half? Of course not!
  • Don’t fix the same time to contact each day/week – Life is full of plans. If you’re expected to drop everything at a particular time no matter what, that’s a big ask. When one of you has other plans and has to get out of that contact, it can feel like a slap in the face, especially if the other one of you is at a loose end. Be flexible.
    And if you must have a fixed time for contact for some reason, discuss in advance how you’ll deal with things when you’re not both available at that time. Remember, it’s all about communication.
  • Focus on the relationship, not the distance – As I said above, it’s easier to contact than ever. You can now talk face to face, regardless of your location. Concentrate on the importance of your relationship and you might as well be in the same room.

You can blame distance when things go wrong; it’s an easy option, because distance is a challenge. But it’s not the only challenge. You don’t have to build up being apart as a problem in itself, even though it’s hard to be away from someone you care about that much. I was head-over-heels in love. Three years away at university didn’t stop that.

Like Moss explains, when you’re both “on the same page about giving it a go”, it doesn’t matter whether you’re on the other side of the world or in the house next door. You’ve already decided not to measure your relationship in miles.

What have I missed? Share your own long-distance experiences and tips in the comments below.

3 comments

  1. Hi! I really like your blog, all information is really topical right now for me, because I’m a first year student in University and everything is new! I will keep reading this.

    I have my own blog about starting university life – survivalinestonia.blogspot.com. Even if I write about studying in Estonia, some things are the same for every new student :) Hope you will like it!

  2. Yeah I’ve got this long distance thang going on with a Mexican chick from Denmark… well actually she’s a Danish Chick that got Mexicanafied… but her main language is English… American English… she’s got an American accent… she’s international? well actually she’s half and half Mexican & Danish but goes to an international schoo… y’know what forget it… anyway the point is I like here in the grey UK and she lives in there in the grey land of pastry and Lego (fun fact: did you know that in Denmark they make sweet delicious iced pastries filled with Lego which can be purchased and choked on in most of the countries finest bakeries?).

    Anyway, we don’t really have a relationship with any legitimacy of names such as, yes we’re going out, or the whole that’s my girl friend and he’s my gorgeous Brittish hunk of a boy friend but at the same time there’s a hell of a lot of relationship going on there. We can talk all the time using instant messaging services, wave at eachother and make stupid faces on Skype and perv on eachothers photos on Facebook. Obviously it’s difficult not being able to actually do all the three K physicals: kissing kuddling and kanoodling. But we make do on the fact that when we get to hook up, these three enjoyable things can be enjoyed on a much highly anticipated and appreciated level.

    Distance doesn’t really seem to make any other difference other than that. We enjoy eachothers company. Which a massive majority of couples within very close proximity to eachother do not seem to enjoy. We’ve said it many times. Sucks that a couple so well connected live such a distance apart when people who seemingly hate eachother just hook up all the time because they live in the same area.

    But at the same time, I was never looking for a relationship. The reason we work is because we really do just work. I vowed after a long relationship with an evil demon that I would never just go out with someone because of the size of their boobies and that unless they made me step back and go “Woah!” WTF was the point? I see a lot of relationships as an insecurity blanket… security blanket for their insecurities? “Oh but they cuddle me and tell me all the lovely things I like to here and deliver me a regular sex life…”… true but they also hate you and you hate them most of the time…

    I don’t see distance as any real obstical so long as there’s going to be an eventual period of being together. Otherwise it just seems a bit stupid. But yeah. Any relationship can work, distanced or not, so long as the people work. That’s my insight anyway.

    Liked the post man.

    Safe x

    Also sorry for my terrible spelling (I may have managed to avoid any mistakes in this here comment but usually I’m flawed.)

    Safe x 2

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