Surviving a long distance relationship is a challenging but achievable goal. Many people believe that love cannot endure geographical separation. They think “out of sight is out of mind.” So you elicit sympathy when you tell them you’re in a long-distance relationship. And the feeling of being alone without your partner for several weeks or months can be emotionally frustrating.
If you’re in a long distance relationship (LDR) and you’re wondering how to survive it or you’re about to start one and need some information), you’re on the right path. According to a 2017 research, 40% of long distance relationships end up as failures. So it’s wise to know how to navigate a long distance relationship and succeed at it.
The problem with long-distance relationships
Many times, the issue of long distance relationships (LDR) is the underlying uncertainty that comes with it. Distance has a queer way of making you feel you’re alone in the relationship. So you wonder if your partner still cares and feels the same way about you. You’re faced with the disturbing question “is he/she worth waiting for?” The possibility of the relationship fizzling out stares hard at you almost every day.
The good news is: you don’t have to let the distance wreck your relationship. Here are seven tips to help you survive a long distance relationship.
1. Create your idea communication style
Many people believe that talking every day or several times a day is a lifesaver for long distance relationships. While it may have worked for some folks, there’s no guarantee it would work for you. Lovers in LDR should figure out their communication style rather than follow some rule of talking every day or several times a day.
So ask your partner how often they like to talk. For many people, talking several times a day can be suffocating. It’s only a matter of time before they feel tired and feel the communication is excessive. Inquiring about their preferred style of communication and saying yours can help you both reach some compromise that works perfectly. There’s no “one size fits all.” Every couple should figure out how they like to keep in touch.
2. Set some rules about seeing each other
Long distance relationship means a long distance separates you, and not that you shouldn’t see each other for too long. From the onset of the relationship, you and your partner need to establish some ground rules about when you will see each other. It may be once in a month, three months or even six months. It depends on how far you are from each other and how convenient it is to make the trip.
There’s comfort in seeing each other periodically. It helps couples bond better when they meet and fuels optimism about the LDR. There’s always a visit to look forward to, and that helps both parties endure the wait. However, sticking to this rule may not be easy, but it can help keep the spark in your relationship alive.
3. Keep your suspicion in check
It’s natural to trust someone we can see every day. But once they move far away, our minds begin to pull a fast one on us. It can be difficult trusting your partner because distance creates doubts. Since you can’t see them, there’s the tendency to read meaning into all they say and do, and to make assumptions about the friends they keep. It’s as though trust nosedives and jealousy takes center stage.
However, you need to remind yourself that people can still cheat even if you sit at breakfast every morning. Rather than allow distance make you critical and suspicious, you can instead choose to let it build your level of understanding. Interestingly, your partner may just be feeling the same way about you. But understanding and patience can make all the difference.
4. Make goals for every visit
So you’ve finally agreed to see at regular intervals. That’s fantastic! What’s next? Goals! Making goals for every visit has proved to help couples make the most of the little time they have together. Rather than just visiting with no idea about what’s happening during the time you share together, creating goals for every visit can help you both feel enthusiastic about seeing each other.
Make a to-do list of what you would love to do with your partner and let them know. It will help you both spend quality time together and create beautiful memories you can treasure when apart. The goals should be different for every visit and help build understanding and intimacy.
5. Think of the big picture
It’s easy to lose sight of the essence of a relationship when you’re both separated by distance. The lonely nights and the difficulty of keeping the connection alive can be draining. Many people have quitted their relationships because they were overwhelmed by the feelings and thought LDR was pointless.
Couples should continuously remind each other that their separation is temporary. Whether it’s for some months or years, reminding yourselves that you’re in this together and there’s the big picture you’ve both dreamed of can help keep hope alive and build more patience. When it seems difficult to continue and easy to quit (and it’s going to feel that way at some point), remind each other of the big picture.
6. Celebrate everything
Even though you’re apart from your partner, life continues. It’s not unusual, therefore, for you or your partner to reach certain milestones in life. Such milestones could be a promotion, a job raise, an award, or even individual dreams. Being a part of each other’s special moments can help deepen the intimacy you share.
No success is insignificant. Let your partner know you’re genuinely excited about their victories and shares yours with them too.
7. Get busy with your life
It’s easy to feel unhappy and have unwanted thoughts swirl in your mind if you sit around moping about the distance. Long distance relationships survive better when couples live their lives despite the separation. It doesn’t mean you should forget you have a partner who’s far away; instead, it means you should channel your energies into doing what you love.
Having a busy day helps you both look forward to sharing the highlights of your day while also making the distance look less noticeable.