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How To Survive A Long Distance Relationship
Whether your girlfriend plans to move across the country for graduate school or you just accepted the promotion of a lifetime in another area, knowing how to survive a long distance relationship will spare you a world of hurt. Luckily, the keys to surviving through separation from your significant other are simple—not to mention a lot less painful than breaking up. All it takes to survive a long distance relationship is a little planning, communication and a willingness to embrace your solitude.
- Set Expectations: Make it clear from day one what you expect from the long distance relationship. Do you expect to talk on the phone every night, fly out every weekend or even date other people? Whatever you desires, negotiate a mutually agreeable plan. That way, you avoid hurt feelings down the road.
- See the Light at the end of the Tunnel: Discuss how long you plan to be apart, and set a clear date for the separation to end. There is a huge difference between living apart for a month and living apart indefinitely. In fact, an indefinite timeframe can cause extreme insecurity and stress.
- Negotiate a Schedule: Set a schedule for phone calls or video chat and stick to it. This shows your lover that she's a priority. Keep in mind that calling too frequently can leave you with little to discuss. Try talking every few days so you have lots of fresh territory to cover.
- Pick up the Phone: A regular dose of your girlfriend's voice will soothe your soul and seal your bond. Unlike email, a phone call gives you the chance to hear her laugh—or to detect hesitation or worry. If long-distance calls still leave you feeling worlds apart, try using online video messaging software. Many instant messenger services have video capability, as do some cell phones.
- Celebrate Independence: It might sound counter-intuitive, but revel in your newfound independence. Enjoy your hobbies and friends. Fill up your time with activities you enjoy. If you lock yourself in the basement and cry all day, you risk tilting the balance of power out of whack, advises Missouri University of Science and Technology. Translation: She holds all the cards.
- PS: I Love You: Never, ever lock up your feelings. Let her know you love her and tell her regularly. It reinforces your bond and keeps insecurity at bay.
- Leave Your Worries Behind: When you visit your beloved, leave the day-to-day worries at home. While together, devote 100 percent of your time and attention to your long distance relationship. Otherwise, your time together will feel stressful instead of special.
- Tell the Truth: Lies inflict enough damage when your lover lives across town. In a long distance relationship, deceit explodes like a nuclear bomb. Get away with one little lie, and soon you will feel tempted to drop more. Imagine the fallout when your lover arrives home for a visit to discover the truth—not pretty. Plus, the truth has an upside: You will feel closer to your significant other.
- No Cheating: This rule ought to be obvious, but all that independence comes with a dark side. If your girlfriend can't catch you with another woman, you might feel tempted when a hot woman approaches you in a bar. But just because your girlfriend can't catch you doesn't mean your cheating ways won't destroy your long distance relationship. You will know what you did, and the guilt will eat you alive.
- Spill Your Guts: Don't be afraid to spill your guts to friends. They care about you and will lend you a fresh perspective. Just don't let them take the place of your beloved. If you need to hash out something with your significant other, pick up the phone.
Posted on: Aug. 09, 2010