Before I entered into a long distance relationship with my boyfriend of 2 years I was told “It is not going to work” straight to my face! What was more shocking is that this “advice” came from a family friend! The family friend then proceeded to put forth her best effort in convincing me as to why the relationship was not going to succeed. Immediately after she confidently described why my relationship would fail I found myself feeling both raw and vulnerable, that is, before I passionately began to profusely argue for and defend my relationship. After four months of long distance I have learned a tremendous amount as to how to handle future situations like the one I encountered and hopefully my experiences can help shed some light on what you might have gone through too!
Not all advice is good advice So to help you prepare and endure during long distance I have prepared 3 pieces of advice/ words of caution.
NOT EVERYONE WILL UNDERSTAND WHY YOU ARE DOING LONG DISTANCE…
I cannot count how many times people have people have asked me “What if you meet somebody else” or “What if you grow apart”.
The reality of the situation is that those are concerns for “regular” relationships as well. The only difference with LDRs is that they test your commitment to each other on a different level. Long Distance cuts out the physical touch and quality time that is experienced when people can see their partners, which can actually be a good thing. Often times people fall in love with the idea of a person or the presence of a person. In a long distance relationship you are able to focus on the personality and understand who you are dating on a deeper level. You will realize how that person makes you laugh while far away, how that person emotionally encourages you and how he/she can still inspire you to be a better version of yourself.
NOT ALL ADVICE IS GOOD ADVICE
Just because long distance did not work for someone else does not mean that it won’t work for you. People are incredibly different, with different communication styles and temperaments. Some people need their boyfriend or girlfriend to be around them all the time while others do not. Be honest with yourself, know your limitations and standards, but do not let people put their standards onto you.
Like the example from my experience I had to realize that my family friend was speaking from her own experiences and her own temperament. The advice that people give will always be administered through that individual’s filter of experience, ability and perceptions. While the individual may have sincere motives “advice” can at times do more harm than good.
Shake off the dust and keep walking.
BE HONEST WITH YOURSELF AND YOUR PARTNER
One of the biggest mistakes that I made “preparing” for long distance was trying to be strong for my boyfriend while denying my own feelings. I noticed that became passive aggressive and began to have a bit of resentment for him leaving me. Those are normal feelings, but they are not good feelings. Be honest with you love and tell them how you are feeling in a way that is constructive. If they know how you feel they won’t have to guess and make wrong interpretations. Telling how you feel is healthy for you and the relationship. Keep your perspective on the big picture and not on small situations. Most likely, the person is doing long distance because they want to better their life or because they can’t help the circumstances. Be flexible and allow the other person to live their life and trust that you both will be okay and still love each other just as much if not more! Also, there is no shame in ending a relationship that is unhealthy or that you do not see working for you anymore. Long distance can help to provide if a relationship that should end. See where you’re at and allow things to take their course while putting in your best effort.
My boyfriend are much closer now than before we began our long distance journey. So trust that there is a bigger purpose for your relationship and keep on keeping on. Communicate daily. Facebook messenger is a great app to use with tons of cute stickers to help “spice up” your messages!
-Love, Katelynn Rose
Ps. We have started a vlog of our long distance journey if you would like to get to know us as a couple more!