How to Survive a Long Distance Relationship
I know how much it sucks when you really like, or even, love someone, but they’re just so far away! It’s even worse when that person is your significant other. My boyfriend and I have been in a successful long distance relationship for two years and I’m going to tell you some of the things we do to make it work! Don’t be discouraged; follow these tips!
- Put in the work– You have to have two extremely dedicated people who actually want to put in the work to pull this off. If you’re dating someone who complains about being long distance all the time and doesn’t want to put in any effort to at least try it out, this is a red flag. If someone really and truly loves you, distance will not be a factor. Trust me. Understand that it will not be easy and on some days you’ll miss them more than others, but you cannot give up if you really want to be with them!
- Communication is key– In today’s digital world, this shouldn’t be a difficult task. (It might be a bit more difficult if your SO is in the armed forces or in some line of work where they cannot have phones/computers/social media for long periods of time). However, if your SO does have a phone, computer and/or social media this should not be a problem. My boyfriend and I communicate ALL THE TIME. (It honestly might be too much, lol). We start the morning off with a good morning text. We then text all day long (whenever we can during work and school). Don’t forget the sporadic FaceTime or phone calls. In between all of that, we are tagging or messaging each other on Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook or Facebook Messenger all day. Sometimes we even email each other. Obviously, you don’t have to be as extra as me and my boyfriend are (we are an example of excessive communication, haha). But what’s most important is that you at least text or call to say good morning to each other every morning and text or call to say goodnight to each other every night. It is crucial to talk to your SO, preferably on the phone or FaceTime, at least once a day if you can. This helps to maintain a level of interpersonal communication, which can, often times, be more meaningful than simply sending words to each other.
- Be willing to go the distance– Literally. If your SO is far away, you guys are going to have to travel. Hopefully, more often than not, depending on where they are. My boyfriend and I live two and a half hours apart. To some people, this sounds like nothing. To other people, it’s so far! For us, we make it work. We both take turns driving two and a half hours north and south to see each other every other week. The tolls add up to about $20 each way. Is this expensive? Yes. Does that $20 each way add up? Yes. But we still pay the money to travel to see each other for the simple fact that it’s worth it. When you love someone, two and a half hours does not keep you away. You may not be able to see your SO every other week; maybe they’re in a another country or they’re 6 hours away. You can still do it. Make sure to plan ahead and save your money so that you will have the means to travel. Work out a schedule as to how many times you can travel to see them and how many times they can see you (your schedule can be weekly, monthly, yearly, etc.)
- Trust them– You cannot have a successful long distance relationship without trust, period. Without trust, you will never be secure in your relationship, especially not when your SO is far away. One key element to building trust is communication. Have conversations with your SO. Talk about what your expectations are and what you will and will not tolerate from each other. Do you mind if they go to parties? If they dance with other people? If they hang out with members of the opposite sex? Those are conversations that need to be had and agreed upon. Once expectations are established, you can feel better knowing that you both put everything on the table. It sucks that you can’t see this person every day so you don’t want to add to the stress by constantly worrying about what they may or may not be doing.
**Bonus Tip– As a courtesy, it is also nice to let your SO know what you’re up to, even though they’re not physically around. Even though my boyfriend and I are 165 miles apart, I still let him know whenever I’m going to a party, have a meeting during the day, will be going out of town, or simply on my way home from work, and he does the same. It helps to keep your partner in the loop. Just because they’re not present, doesn’t mean they don’t care. It’s super easy to take a few seconds to just check in with one another!
- Cherish the moments– You guys don’t get to see each other often! So, cherish the times you do get to spend together. It’s always nice to have a chill night at home, watching movies and eating junk food, but it’s just as important to go out on the town and do things you don’t always get to do together. My boyfriend and I love going to NYC and for Valentine’s Day last year, we went to Broadway to see the play, Wicked. Some other fun places we’ve gone to are wax museums, the zoo, the aquarium, the circus and comedy clubs just to name a few. We also love to take time out of our schedules to travel together. We took a cruise out of the country last summer and a few months ago we spent a week in California. (Even though we love traveling and being on the go, one of our all-time favorite things to do together is take naps)! It doesn’t have to be anything spectacular, just as long as you two are together having fun, that’s all that matters. Just don’t take those moments for granted because you don’t always get to see that person.
- Try to limit petty arguments– Of course you’re going to get mad at your SO sometimes, but try your best to limit your arguments. My boyfriend and I absolutely hate arguing when we’re not together. (Does that sound crazy? lol) It’s just that when we argue in person, it’s easy to make up when we can have a face-to-face conversation, hold each other’s hands or give each other a hug. We can instantly make each other feel better. When we argue over text or on the phone, we cannot see each other. It’s easy to just hang up, not answer, or ignore texts or calls. This just puts stress on us and strains our relationship. When you argue via text, phone or FaceTime, it’s a terrible feeling knowing that you can’t reach out and hug that person, or do some quirky thing that only you can do to make them feel better in that moment. Petty arguments are bound to happen, just remember not to dwell on them. Make sure you talk things out with your SO and try to resolve things as soon as possible. It’s bad enough that you don’t get to see them every day, so you don’t want to spend valuable time being angry with them.
If any of you are in a long distance relationship, I hope these tips were helpful to you. My relationship is not perfect, but these are some of the things that work for us. Don’t get me wrong, relationships can be tough, especially when they’re long distance, but real love is totally worth it.
What do you guys think? Am I missing anything? Have you done any of these things in your own long distance relationship? Let me know in the comments!