6 Tips To Make Your Long Distance Relationship Work

Love is a tricky thing that usually has to overcome some obstacles. One of those obstacles can be distance, and with things like phones, planes and Skype, it is easier than ever to continue a relation despite the distance between you and your significant other. However, this doesn’t mean that long distance relationship are easy.
In fact, most people who I asked for advice on long distance relationships told me not to have one. Now, I don’t want to say that means you shouldn’t have a long distance relationship, but there are a couple of things you should keep in mind when you decide to do so.

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1. Be realistic

Before you and your partner decide to go long distance, you have to be realistic about the future. Yes, you are having a great time together, but is it really worth it? Breaking up doesn’t always have to mean you are not compatible. Sometimes it just means that the time is not right, that it was not ‘meant to be’. And that is okay. Don’t be afraid to admit that breaking up might be the better option in some cases.

If you do decide to be in a long distance relationship, be realistic about the fact that it is going to suck. A lot. You are going to miss each other. A lot. This might seem logical, but one of the main killers of any type of relationship is having wrong expectations.

2. Be honest

This is key in any relationship, but even more in a long distance one. Since you are not spending a lot of time together it is hard to read someone’s emotions. Your partner won’t always be able to tell when you are upset about something, so if you are, let them know.

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3. Give each other space

Understand the other person has a life of their own, a life that doesn´t include you as actively as it might when you live near ach other. Sometimes it´s best to have a schedule. That way you will always have the certainly you will talk to your partner at the end of the day/week, which might make it easier to let go at other times. Besides, when you are dealing with a difference in time zones, it might be best to have a fixed time since it will save you a lot of time trying t plan every single Skype session.

Try to avoid being on your phone all the time as that will only make the longing worse, same as skyping or face timing all the time. Yes, you are in a relationship and in an ideal situation you would see each other 24/7, but it´s not ideal. Try to make sure the relationship doesn´t take up your entire life and give each other some space.

4. Understand it is not going to be easy

.. and that is an understatement. Having a long distance relationship is not like any other normal relationship. It requires even more hard work, trust, honesty than a normal relationship. It´s hard to find some real statistics on this subject, but it is estimated about 75% of long distance relationships end up in failure (because of the long distance). Now that doesn´t mean your relationship has to fail, but it does mean that you have to perform ‘above average´ to make sure your relationship does make it. Probably none of the failed couples went into going long distance thinking it was going to be easy and that they would fail in the end, but they did. You can beat the odds, but it is going to take some work.

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5. Set goals!

As part of being realistic, you have to set goals. What do you want in life? Are you going away for just a semester, or are you planning to spend the next couple of years looking for employment abroad? If so, what are your partners plans? It is important to set a goal for when you are going to actually be together.

This also counts for the short term. Having an idea about when you are going to see your significant other again can really help make the situation less tense. Plan ahead who will visit who and when. This planning also goes for speaking to each other. If you want to both enjoy your time abroad and keep a good relationship with your partner, it´s a good idea to have a set time and day where you are going to speak to each other. This way you won´t continuously talk to each other and you will also have something to look forward to.

6. Complete trust

With complete honesty also comes complete trust. When you are not with someone the entire time you need to completely trust this person to not betray your relationship. Jealousy is one of the biggest risks in a long distance relationship, and it can easily cause a lot of unnecessary tension.

A relationship expert named Ian Kerner claimed in order to save your marriage, you need to delete each other from Facebook. Not seeing what your partner has been doing all the time might give you more things to talk about, and not seeing all the hot girls and boys that just befriended your love on Facebook might make you a little bit less on edge about what they are doing in their free time.

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I have seen many people return home and or not fully enjoy their time abroad because of a relation, and while it is a very romantic gesture to come back for someone, I think it is important to keep in mind that a healthy relation isn’t necessarily based on being near to each other. Being apart from each other, trusting each other completely is in some ways the ultimate test for a relationship. Because if your relationship can overcome time apart, you know it is real and that it can survive a lot more.

 

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