You have probably seen me talk about it before, but if you don’t know I have been doing long distance with my boyfriend for over two years. At first we did 8 months, then ended up back in the same state, then we did over 16months again. But WHOOP WOO it is over, I REPEAT IT IS OVER!!
I know we are not the only ones that have done long distance, but we have definitely gone through our struggles during our time alone and learnt A LOT of how to make this work for us. Before writing this post, I sat down with my boyfriend (well on the phone) to pick out our top 10 tips. So here they are:
# 1 Make time for phone calls/ Skype
Quality communication is key to any relationship, but it is even more important in a long distance one. So my number one tip is make time for long phone calls or even better Skype. My partner and I used to often find ourselves on the phone for over an hour. It is really important to have quality communication and keep up to date on each other’s lives. Which leads me onto our next point….
#2 Don’t speak too often
This one came from my boyfriend. At first I put up a big fight – trust me it caused a lot of problems to begin with. But I soon realized exactly what he had predicted when we texted, snap’d and called each other every day, multiple times a day…. Our conversation got dry. We would always just talk about mundane things and nothing would be kept interesting or exciting. It might sound like an odd tip when I speak about making time for phone calls. But me trust, limit the phone
#3 See each other as regularly as possible
This one might be a given, but when you get caught up in your life and the cost associated with travelling interstate it can be difficult to prioritize seeing each other. When we started we had a few long stints apart because Jackson was working and I was in the midst of my last semester of uni. So when we started long distance the second time we vowed to see each other every 6 weeks (give or take), sometimes its 8weeks, something’s it 4weeks. But we stuck to that average of 6 weeks and it has made life so much easier.
#4 Make time for just the two of you
In a long distance relationship it can be hard to just have time to the two of you. There are always other people that want to see you when you go back home. For some this isn’t a problem because the ‘new place’ might not have friends or family. But for Jackson and I, we both grew up in SE QLD so we had plenty of people to catch up with, and both had family, friends in Melbourne so again, plenty of people to see. It is not until we started making sure we had a day totally to ourselves on these little trips that it made the distance so much easier.
We even went a whole four days last October, for a little romantic trip to bright – I highly recommend it, read more about what we got up to here…. Is it sad or funny that at the end of that trip I looked over to Jackson and we both said, this is the longest time we have spent just us for our entire relationship…
#5 Have the difficult conversations
In long distance you can find your relationship moving a lot slower than those around you, you don’t get to do all the coupley things together. That is why it is still so important for you to have the difficult conversations. Chances are at the end of long distance you will be gearing up to live together so you really need to get to know your ‘other half’. Ask about marriage, kids, career, life goals etc. Talk about your future and where you see each other fitting into it!
These conversations happen over time, or a lot more naturally at least when you are living close, but it can be harder to bring them up over the phone – however you need to keep checking in to see if you are growing at the same pace and way and still both want to make this work.
#6 Know an end date for the long distance
AS SOON AS POSSIBLE know the exit strategy for this long distance. The longer you wait to have the conversation of who is going to move and when the more assumptions you will both make. Have it leading up to the long distance starting and continue it when you are apart. Relationships are all about compromise, and moving states is a biggy, but in the end someone has to do it.
#7 Keep the chemistry alive
It can take a little more work to do this in long distance; hell It can be hard enough in some relationships when you have been together for a while. But it is so important to find a way that works for you and your partner to keep each other interested and looking forward to your next visit. Whether that be over texts, phone calls or sending little presents to each other. And that’s all I’m going to say on that topic… because…. Hi Mum, I know you are reading!!…..
#8 Trust your partner, and don’t check up on them
This ties back in with tip two. When you love your partner you need to be able to trust them. Whether you live in the same city or your live 2000km apart trust is a fundamental building block of a relationship. But this gets even harder when you are in long distance. You aren’t going to be going to the same parties, hanging out with friends together – really you can go weeks on end without knowing what your partner is actually get up to.
So while it is important you talk to each other on the regular and keep each other updated on your lives, you really need to trust your partner and not check up on them when you know they will be at a party for example. If you need to check up on them all the time it will run the intimacy and your partner will just start to resent you. (Boys this goes both ways)…
#9 Keep each other updated on your family and friends
A big part of a relationship is your partners family and friends. You need to get on with them as well to have a healthy relationship. But long distance can stilt the connection you make with them. It is important for you and your partner to keep each other up to date about your respective family and friends so that they feel apart of it. And whilst tip #4 is important, it is also important when visiting your partner to catch up with his family or friends.
#10 Don’t unload your shit day on each other
This is a difficult one, you want your partner to be your best friend, your confidant but when you are in long distance you need to try and keep conversations positive. Some days you will have shit days, but try not to unload that on your partner all of the time. Sure share the big things that are shit, but going back the tip #2 if you talk all the time and its always you complaining, how is that going to feel? It isn’t exactly going to help with staying positive about long distance.
The last thing to remember is that every relationship is different. In long distance it can be easy to want to just call it quits. Instead talk to your partner and see if you can come to a compromise or solution that suits you both. It is hard, but you have to think of why you are doing it in the first place. Jackson and I have taken this time apart to focus on and build our career, so for us there are no regrets!!
Oh and I know I said I had 10 tips…. But one last one
#11 tell your partner you love them and miss them…. Because in the end they are in the same boat as you.