How to Make the Distance Work: A Guide

The cover image states, How to make the distance work, a guide.

As many of you may know, my girlfriend and I have been in a long-distance relationship for over four years. “How do you do it?” is a question we get asked all the time. Instead of my usual shrug and “idk man idk,” I decided to blog an actual answer. Behold, the introductory post (1/6).

My Relationship Dynamic

If you aren’t very familiar, I thought I should share some of my relationship basics here, so you can get a sense of how your own relationship might relate or differ from mine. This is also a sort of disclaimer because not everything is going to work for every relationship. This series is just about what works for mine.

My girlfriend, Jas, and I are both in our early twenties and live countries apart—I’m in the States and she’s in the UK. We met online five years ago and started dating without meeting each other in person. Now, we spend a few months together every year and maintain our relationship through the distance for the bulk of the 12 months. This series will tell you how we manage to get through the distance in 5 key topics in the upcoming weeks: communication, friends/family, coping with the Big Sad, long-distance activities, and looking onward.

Long Distance Isn’t for Everyone

Some people might say that with the right communication and effort, any relationship can survive distance. Personally, I disagree. I don’t think that every person or every relationship is equipped to deal with distance. Of course, this is all based on many factors, like how much of a distance, whether the couple has lived together already and switched to distance, how many time zones does the distance cross, domestic distance versus international distance, the individuals’ personalities, etc.

It’s kind of a joke at this point in lesbian culture to be in an LDR, and in some ways, it almost seems a little romanticized. (Yes, my love story is the cutest thing you will ever hear. Yes, I contribute to this romanticizing. No, I’m not sorry.) Put my perfect LDR aside for a second and let me tell you a secret. If Jas and I ever broke up, I would never do long-distance again. It’s not fun people! And I have had people tell me in the past, “I wish I was in a long-distance relationship [sigh].” Big. Fat. Yikes. To the dumbest statement I have ever heard.

That being said, if your relationship has no other option but long distance, I hope this series will help you in some way. Just know this is not a fool-proof plan to make a hard situation work out for you. Relationships require work and effort on their own, and adding distance to the equation inflates the amount of effort you need to make to work. I encourage you to give it your best try but don’t break yourself to make it work. Say it with me now: Long. Distance. Isn’t. For. Everyone. Okay! Now you’re prepared for the rest of my wisdom on the subject.

Read Next

How to Make the Distance Work: A Communication Guide.

Link to “How to Make the Distance Work” homepage for all parts.

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