Read these 7 Long Distance Relationships Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Relationship tips and hundreds of other topics.
There is a down side to long distance relationships. You may tire of the travel, of not having a partner who's there to share in the day-to-day joys and travails of a life partnership. At that point, the question facing long distance romance is similar to the question all couples face at some point: do we take it to the next level?
For long distance couples, it's ideal if you can test moving to the next level before one of you uproots your life and displaces to the other's home turf. Here's a list of things to begin the process:
Long distance relationships are not usually something people choose, but they are a fact of life in modern societies where people move around and travel a lot. The saying “absence doth make the heart grow fonder” is usually built-in to long distance romance. Need space? You have it in abundance when experiencing long distance love.
Long distance dating has many benefits:
One sure-fire way to undermine the advantages of this arrangement, however, is when long-distance relationships start to mirror a relationship with someone you live with. Cell phones, Blackberries, email, and the rest of our communication technologies make is possible to not go a minute without contact with someone on the opposite side of the world. This can be comforting and reassuring at times when you need that immediate contact. At the same time, it can undermine one of the main advantages of a long-distance romance: DISTANCE!
The distance piece of a long-distance romance may be hard at times but it's also what allows each party to feel a sense of autonomy and freedom from obligation to constantly be on alert to the needs of another. Of course, in the case of an obvious crisis, a parent's hospitalization or getting laid off from a job, it makes sense to reach out to one's intimate partner wherever they are. But that's different from texting, emailing, or calling 5, 10, 25 times a day, just to touch base. If it works for both of you, that can be OK. But if one of you starts feeling a pressure to answer and conflict emerges over the question “Where were you?” … pay attention. An imbalance may be emerging over needs for contact and space.
OK, so you know that many long distance couples find this arrangement to be the best of both worlds. You can live life without constant attention to a partner's needs, but have a person with whom you connect for romance and fun.
But what happens if something comes up in your normal life that is a real crisis? How does your long distance boyfriend or girlfriend fit into this situation? Do you not tell them about it? This may be the choice for some who don't want to bring “real life” into the bubble of that long distance love.
Or do you call them for support? Do you reach out as most folks would, for the comforting voice of your intimate partner?
There is no correct answer here. But it can be a turning point in telling you both about where your relationship is and where it is going.
How each of you handle this situation will tell you a lot. How do they handle your crisis. Or, conversely, how do you feel about them bringing their crisis to you? If you share a crisis with them, are they supportive or avoidant? If they call you, are you empathic or resentful that they're dumping this on you? A positive response can range from their staying more in touch than normal by calling or emailing regularly to get you through the crisis. Or it could involve their hopping on a plane to be with you. Or it could be anything in between. There's no correct response in this situation. It's all about what each of you needs, how well that need is conveyed, and how the response comes back. How it's handled will tell you a lot about what's possible for a real relationship down the road.
According to LongDistanceRelationships.com, approximately 7 million couples in the
Long distance relationships are often a topic of controversy; everyone seems to have a story or an opinion on why relationships will or will not work. Quite simply, if you love someone enough, distance, and even borders, will not prevent you from enjoying a healthy and wonderful relationship.
Certainly most couples would prefer to spend the bulk of their time together, enjoying each other's company and sharing experiences together. Unfortunately, a number of couples do not enjoy that luxury as a result of work, citizenship status or familial obligations. Sometimes physically being together simply isn't an option. However, that doesn't mean that the relationship is destined to fail.
Find ways to keep in touch with your partner and make sure to take full advantage of every moment you get to spend together. Plan short trips together, take a sick day at work or just show up unexpectedly at their door when possible. You would be amazed at the long lasting impact that effort will have on the level of admiration you receive from your partner.
Remember that the heart knows no borders, so don't allow them to interfere in a relationship with the person you love most.
Long distance relationship are so common these days that people even write poems about them. Poems, limericks, and haikus are a few ways to express your love. A picture may speak a thousand words but sometimes a poem distills in a few words the essence of something that it could take a whole book to describe.
Here is one example where long distance love is viewed through the lens of poetry by Dani Meier (2007). It's not poet laureate stuff but poetry can include humor too. And to handle a long distance relationship (or any relationship for that matter) a sense of humor is important:
An Ode to Long Distance Love, Dani Meier
A long distance love can be lovely,
There's passion and sex and romance,
You can meet in new wonderful places,
You can wine, you can dine, you can dance.
Leave regular life far behind you,
No work and no phones and no bills,
This is the time for just playing,
No cleaning up messes or spills.
After the fun is all done,
Go back to your life and be you,
Stay in your boxers or sweats,
Be a slob, ignore the shampoo.
Yes, long distance love can be lovely,
When you plan it, the romance is there,
But the rest of life just isn't bothered,
What a great way to spell love affair!
Some long distance couples find this to be the best of both worlds. You can live your life without constant attention to the needs of a partner. Yet, you have a person with whom you connect periodically to get a regular dose of romance and fun.
After a while, this can be a double-edged sword, however.
Many couples in long distance relationships find it so much fun and, in a way, so low-impact on their day-to-day lives, that after a while they become convinced that this relationship is obviously “the one.” And sometimes it is. But it's hard to judge that from a distance.
Perhaps no long distance relationship advice is more important than to be careful. Do not overestimate a long distance relationship's potential to translate into a regular relationship where you live in the same town, same home, and are headed towards long-term commitment.
The long distance relationship is an easy place to be on best behavior. Anyone can be accommodating, flexible, and attentive for a long weekend. This says little, in most cases, about how accommodating, flexible and attentive each party will be if you see each other every day, much less live in the same home.
In a nutshell, always remember: a long distance romance is NOT real life. It can be a wonderful little bubble that floats through real life. Party on in that bubble. Live it up.
Real life happens when you step outside that bubble to incorporate both your habits, idiosyncrasies, faults, families, jobs. Life becomes very different from what it was inside that bubble. Make changes to your life with caution.