Long Distance Relationship Advice: 10 Ways to Make it Work

Many couples in long distance relationships are desperately  seeking advice and with good reason!

It is unnatural for two people to be in a serious relationship, yet never spend anytime with each other, nor express their affection physically.  Yet in this and age, 1 out of 7 couples are in long distance relationships.

If you’re feeling frustrated with your long distance relationship, here are ten tips that will  help you survive.

1) Set Expectations

If you are hoping for a long distance relationship, the first expectation is that the relationship should only be long distance temporarily.

The longer you remain in a long distance relationship, the more likely it is to fizzle out or worse yet, one of you might begin to prefer the distance over an actual relationship.

A woman should always ask the magic question,  “What are your intentions”?

If the man responds that he is looking for a friendship with a special lady, and “we’ll see how it goes”, walk away.  In any relationship, you have to see how things progress, but the intention should be to find someone you want to marry.

2) Don’t Over-communicate

Because a lot of couples are on social media, there is constant communication.    What this means is that when you actually get on the phone with your boyfriend or girlfriend, you have run out of things to speak about.  This could lead to fears that you have nothing in common.

I see a lot of issues with couples where at least one is an introvert and therefore finds it difficult to keep a conversation going. The more extroverted partner may take the long silences as an indication that the other finds him or her boring.

One way to help in this situation is to have a list of “couple questions” that one can ask each other on the phone. These questions will create lots of conversation fodder.

3) Visit Each Other Regularly

If someone tells you that you can nurture a relationship remotely without meeting, they’re lying to you.

You don’t know someone until you interact with them in person.  That’s a fact.

When your only interactions are soulful conversations over the phone, or longing glances on video chat, you are creating an alternative reality. That’s not how life works.

Human beings need touch.   If you’re in a “hands-off” courtship, where you’re not expressing too much physical affection, I’m sure there are still opportunities for innocent touching, like when he takes your hand, to lead you across the street, or to help you exit a car.

4) Video Chat Regularly

When you video chat, you get to hear the person’s voice, as you would over the phone, with the added bonus of visually seeing them.

You get to see all their little annoying expressions and how they fiddle when they speak to you.   On a positive note, you get to stare deeply into their eyes.

Don’t video chat more than once  or twice a week, to prevent over-familiarity.

5) Find Ways to Experience Daily Life Together

It’s hard to be in a relationship, yet feel alone because you hardly get to spend time with him or her.  You can’t accompany him to the ballgame with your friends. She can’t take you out on a couple’s dinner date.

There are some things you can do together.

  • You can watch a television event together, like the elections.
  •  You can read a book together.
  • You can pray a novena together.

By doing these things as a couple, you simulate a local relationship, and you grow closer.

6) Show Your Appreciation

Tell your girlfriend how beautiful she is. Don’t assume she does not need to hear it because she knows it.  Don’t assume she already knows it because you told her once before.  Always  look for opportunities to compliment her and tell her how much she means to you.

Women, always let your man know how smart he is and what a hard worker he is. Always whisper things in his ears that will boost his confidence in his manliness.

7) Support & Compliment Him or Her on Social Media

If you are both active on social media, it is very important that you support each other on that medium.  How can you do this?

  • Like and comment on each other’s posts.
  • Compliment him or her on posted selfies.
  • Share pictures of the two of you (as long as he or she agrees)

Those of us who are on social media, obviously care about how we are perceived. We also care about how our relationships are perceived. One can argue about whether that is a good thing or whether it is unhealthy.  However, it is what it is.

8) Don’t Take Each Other For Granted

The fact that you are apart, creates its own set of problems.  Couples in long distance relationships often feel as if they are not in relationships at all.

Furthermore, they are surrounded by single people who  really don’t care if they are in long distance relationship.

This is why you have to give that extra TLC to your boyfriend or girlfriend.

Tell him how much you appreciate him.  Tell her how much you’re willing to sacrifice for her just to be with her.  Tell him how much you love him.

9) Don’t Idealize Your Partner

Because you’re not seeing each other regularly, it is easy to idealize your partner.

Your partner is not perfect. She has flaws.   He’s not always nice.

Idealizing your partner can lead to a failed relationship because when you are with each other, you will quickly disavow each other of your rose-colored notions.

You can be realistic by being honest with each other when you talk over the phone or on video chat.

10) Pray With Each Other

Do not neglect to pray with each other.  Here are some prayers you can pray together.

  • The Our Father, Hail Mary  & Glory Be at the end of each phone conversation.
  • Novenas
  • The Rosary
  • Any other prayers you enjoy, such as the St Michael prayer.

Pray together now and you will be setting a healthy precedent for your future marriage.

As you can see, long distance relationships have their special challenges, but they can be overcome.

So get out there and don’t be afraid to date someone who lives far away.

 

 

 

 

 

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One thought on “Long Distance Relationship Advice: 10 Ways to Make it Work

  1. Bill

    What are your credentials for giving relationship counseling? Do you have a degree(s)? Do you have a counseling practice?

    I ask these questions because I have a successful marriage that started out as a long distance romance, and I think you left out some very important points.

    If you are thinking marriage, you have to decide who is going to move. Who is willing to give up their home, being close to their friends and/or family, give up their job and everything else that is familiar. Being whisked away can seem very romantic, but then there is the reality when you wake up and realize you are in a strange place with no one and nothing familiar with someone you may not know very well at all.

    You also have to ask if the other person is using you as just a way out of a bad situation.

    I do agree with you that people also need to visit each other in person many times so that you can you see one another in different situations. People can put on a great face when they are “artificially” with one another, e.g., Facebook, but it can be very different when you are in real life situations and see how the other person interacts with But as I said, it must be MANY times. How much do you really have in common? Sure, you’re “in love”, but do you like this person as well? You can’t know that without spending a lot of time together, and that is very difficult in long distance romances. Ideally, one person should actually move so you can live close by to each other before making a final commitment. Butt that can’t be done, then you need to make a financial commitment to do a lot of traveling before committing to one another. My spouse and I dated for almost 3 years before finally making the decision to marry, and we visited each other every couple of months at the very least, and talked at least an hour on the phone every day (days before social media). But we have now been married almost 17 years with no regrets.

    Long distance romances can have real pitfalls because we tend to see what we want to see and to show only what we want the other other person see. I think in this day of the Internet, it is also a very good idea to do a background check on the other person, their finances, criminal background if any, etc. Romance is scary no matter what, but long distance romance can be the scariest of all.

    Reply

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