5 Tips to Giving Your Long Distance Relationship the Happy Ending It Deserves!
Having been in a successful Long Distance Relationship myself (how else does a 19-year-old girl end up moving from the US to the Philippines all by herself?), I thought I would share some of the secrets to my success! There are a lot of people out there who don’t believe that Long Distance Relationships (henceforth shortened to ‘LDRs’) can ever work out; but I know plenty of couples, including me and my fiance, who have proven them wrong. If you are in an LDR, fear not! You can prove them wrong, too!
However, I’m not going to lie and tell you that LDRs are easy. That is almost never the case. LDRs take a lot more dedication, loyalty, time and communication than most normal relationships. As such, I’m here with 5 tips to help give your long distance relationship the happy ending that it deserves!
5 Tips to Giving Your Long Distance Relationship the Happy Ending It Deserves!
5. Set aside lots of time for activities together.
Being in a long distance relationship means that you can’t do a lot of things that normal couples can do. You can’t go see a movie together and cuddle. You can’t go out for the night together and try out new restaurants. You can’t bring your partner out to drinking sessions with your friends. However, there are a lot of alternatives that you can look into to give you and your significant other some quality couple time! Thanks to the wonderful world of technology (special nod to Skype software here!) available today, you can still share activities together over the computer.
Okay, you can’t bring your laptop to the theater to see that new Avengers movie you’ve been dying to watch, but you can still have a Marvel movie marathon at home with your honey! Have Skype running in the background, and then there’s the countdown… “3… 2… 1…. play!” Hit the play button at the same time and enjoy a movie with your sweetheart. Sometimes, it’s a little hard to get the timing right, but my sweetheart and I loved our Skype movie dates.
Itching to get out of the house? Bring your laptop and find a place with free wifi! Lots of coffee shops all over now offer free wifi to paying customers, so take your LDR love out for a nice hot coffee if you’re in America or a refreshing, icy frappe in the Philippines! People might look at you a little weirdly when they hear you talking to your laptop while at the cafe, but it’s worth it, I assure you. It’s a nice way to keep your Skype sessions from getting too boring, as well!
Another fun thing we enjoyed doing was finding a new recipe that we could both try. We’d get the same ingredients and cook together over Skype, then eat our same dinner together! It was also a fun way to share cultures. David taught me how to make dishes like beef tapa and kilawin, and I taught him how to make different types of pasta and beef stroganoff.
Our attempt at cooking churros “together”. David’s are the tastier-looking ones!
4. Show your sweetheart you care by putting extra effort into your relationship.
Putting a lot of effort into your relationship is especially important in a long distance relationship. You aren’t there to share special moments with your partner and you can’t hold them when they cry. There’s just a lot of things that aren’t in your capability through technology. As such, it’s very important to find other ways to show your lover how much you care about them! There are so many ways that you can do this, but one in particular that never fails is to:
Send them a care package! It’s pretty pricey to mail a package halfway around the world, so you will probably need to save up for it. That’s not a bad thing, though, as it gives you lots of time to put thought into everything you want to include. When my fiancé David and I were in an LDR, we especially loved receiving personal things from each other. David was a football player, so he mailed me one of his jerseys. I was so proud to wear it around; I even wore it to work! I sent him my favorite sleeping shirt sprayed with my favorite perfume, and he loved getting that. He mailed me lots of other things, too, including a pillow and a blanket, his favorite food, dried roses that he had bought for Valentine’s Day, and lots of things that made me smile so much. I tried to do the same in my packages to him.
Some stuffed animals he sent me to cuddle in place of him.
3. Make plans to see them in person!
Even if it can’t happen anytime soon, make solid plans to see each other! Whether it will be your first in-person meeting or a reunion, nothing will be more worth it. Flying across the world is expensive and requires a lot of time, though, so plan as early as you can.
Not only will planning ahead help you save money and make sure you take care of everything you need (from getting someone to watch your cat while you’re gone to requesting time off of work), but having fixed plans will give you something to look forward to. It can be so discouraging being in an LDR with no end and no meetings in sight. It can make you wonder if it’s worth it at all. By planning a date to see your love, you give yourself motivation to keep putting effort into your relationship, a goal to work for, and something to look forward to.
Since my sweetheart happened to be an accounting graduate, he was also able to help me budget and save as much money as I could before moving across the world. Once David and I were able to set a date for me to fly to the Philippines, everything just kept getting better from there! I secured my passport and then finally bought a ticket, and that was one of the happiest days for us during our LDR.
2. Trust your partner.
Trust is obviously hugely important in any relationship, but even more so in a long distance relationship. If you do not trust your partner, you should not be in an LDR. End of story.
When your love is more than 10,000 kilometers away from you, you cannot check up on what he or she is doing all the time. You have to trust that he is where he says he is and doing what he says he is doing. You have to trust that they care as much about you as you do about them and will be loyal to you, no matter what. If you feel a need to question him all the time about where he is and what he’s doing, accusing him all the time of lying to you or cheating on you without having real evidence to show, your LDR probably won’t last that long. In order to have this trust in your partner, you have to have really good communication with each other, which leads us to the number 1 and most important tip for a successful LDR:
1. Communicate about everything all the time.
Again, this one is pretty much a no-brainer. Communication is vital to making any relationship last. But in a long distance relationship, communication is all that you really have, so take advantage of it! Get to know your partner like you’ve never known any person before. Share everything about yourself with them. That’s one thing that technology makes easier. Sometimes, it’s easier to reveal your deepest secrets to someone when you aren’t looking them right in the eyes. If you can’t be yourself with your sweetheart over the phone or through Facebook, then how can you be yourself with them in person? Even when we couldn’t Skype or IM (with a 16-hour time difference, it can be hard to line up schedules), we always made sure to leave messages for each other or make short videos talking about our day to send each other later.
Share all of your fears and insecurities with each other. If you are ever having doubts about whether your relationship is worth the dedication you are giving it, talk to your partner about it. If you are serious about your feelings towards this person, you need to let them know you inside and out. Don’t talk about what your partner did wrong behind his back to your best friend; go to him. He’s the only one who can really alleviate any insecurities you have, and he is the only one who can change or work on something if you tell him what’s wrong. Even if you’re fighting, never resort to deactivating your Facebook account and logging out of Skype or anything as dramatic as that. These are your only lines of communication, and cutting them off is particularly cruel to your LDR love. You will have to learn to step out of your comfort zone with your partner until they become your comfort zone.
David gaming while Skype is running in the background.
So, before getting discouraged by everyone saying “Long distance relationships are doomed from the start” and other negative things; take a step back and look at your relationship. If you put forth the effort required, a long distance relationship can have just as much success as any other relationship, and you just might get your fairy tale ending!
We closed the distance and couldn’t be happier!