Despite all of the negative connotations that accompany long distance relationships, there are still an estimated 14 million long distance couples in the US. According to Long Distance Relationship Statistics, there are 3.75 million married couples in the US who live apart, whilst 10% of all marriages began as long distance relationships.
So, how have these couples made it work regardless of the distance? We thought we’d take a look at the best tips the internet has to offer to ensure your long distance relationship remains a healthy, loving and positive experience.
Communication is key, especially if you are unable to speak to your partner face-to-face. That said, according to an expert on long distance relationship advice at TheCircle, partners have nothing to worry about due to the sheer amount of communication technology we have these days. You can Facebook message, tweet, snapchat, Instagram, call, Whatsapp, text, Skype or Google Hangout with each other whenever you need to. It isn’t like the old days when couples had to correspond using snail mail that took weeks to arrive anywhere.
However, it is important that you do not over saturate each other by creating expectations or rules. For instance, do not demand a certain amount of phone calls or texts per day. Instead make communication optional, otherwise you run the risk of running out of things to talk about or worse still making your partner feel obligated to speak to you. Once your interactions become a task or chore, it’s a slippery slope to resentment.
2. Make Plans
Author Mark Manson has experienced a few forms of long distance relationships in his lifetime, some of which went better than others. He suggests that long distance couples need something to look forward to in order to avoid developing unhealthy feelings that could eventually lead to an argument or break up. When both parties show they are willing and excited to make the effort to meet in person, then the relationship is bound to be stronger and more enjoyable.
Between each visit, ensure they you have solid plans to see each other again, so that you both have something to look forward to even if it’s just cooking together or watching a movie you’ve both been waiting to see.
3. Enjoy Being Alone
Enjoying time by yourself is a crucial aspect in every relationship, never mind a long distance one. After all, if you cannot enjoy time by yourself then you may be using relationships as a way to fill that void or fear of being alone. Lifehack state that although you may be alone, you don’t have to feel lonely unless you choose to be.
Never allow your entire world to revolve around your partner, and never believe that just because they are not within arm’s reach that they have left you alone. When you become melancholy, focus on yourself and attempt to figure out why it is you feel this way. Perhaps you need a new hobby or to meet some new people? The world is yours for the taking and your life can be whatever you want it to be, regardless of where your partner is.
Article by Janet Harrison. Janet is a freelance writer and mum of one from the UK. She practiced as a relationship therapist for a number of years before having her little girl and deciding to become a stay-at-home mum.