There’s a right way and a wrong way to do pretty much everything in life, and that includes how you go about starting your long distance relationship. Now if you’re like 90% of people having a relationship over a distance of thousands of miles isn’t a choice you consciously made or something you particularly wanted, but the reality is that it’s now part of your life and you need to plan for it accordingly.
The advice I want to share with you here today is about the early days of the relationship, and some agreements and best practices you need to have in place to have a healthy relationship that will go the distance.
3 Tips For Starting A Long Distance Relationship
Set A Timeline
Far too many people get into a long distance relationship without having any idea of just how long they’ll have to maintain a relationship of this type. Will it be 2 years or 10 years? Have you made any agreements about trying to live closer together after college/the internship/whatever is done? It’s all too easy for people to find themselves 5-years into a long distance relationship only to realize that their partner has no intention of ever moving closer to them, something which should have been agreed at the very start. Basically you need to sit down and plan out a future that works for both of you, otherwise resentment is going to be a major problem for you both.
Sometimes we lie to protect the feelings of other people, and people in long distance relationships tend to do that quite a bit – even though they might only be white lies. Nobody wants to hear the “I’ll be living in another city for the next x years, so we’ll never see each other and I think it’s best to break up now” line even if it’s the truth. But if you honestly think there’s no hope of maintaining a long distance relationship with your current partner then you may need to be cruel to be kind and simply end it now. Sure they’ll probably resent you for not trying, but the flipside of that is that you just handed them back several years of their life you could just as easily have “wasted” on them.
This should go without saying but a lack of transparent communication between couples in any long distance relationship is the kiss of death for that relationship. The problem most people have is that when you’re used to speaking to somebody several times per day it can be really tough to wind that back to just a few times per week at best.
It’s also worth remembering that good communication isn’t about quantity but rather quality, so although sending your sweetheart 20 text messages a day might seem cute she could get tired of it very, very quickly. So it’s not a bad idea to set up some kind of communication agreement too at the very start of any long distance relationship. It doesn’t need to be a formal blueprint, but just a discussion on the Do’s and Don’ts of how you plan on staying in touch with each other. For example some people HATE talking on the phone, but have no problem emailing you 10 times a day. Go with what works for you both!
It takes two people for a relationship to be successful, so it’s down to both of you deciding what you need and want from your relationship from the very start – it can prevent lots of unpleasant surprises later on.
Do you have any tips you’d like to share on how to start a long distance relationship? Hit me up with a comment below!