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.
- 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.