I'm no Dr. Phil. I can't provide statistical evidence, doctorate-level advice, or solid proof that this is an undeniable fact. I can, however, speak from personal experience. In some cases, that can be worth more than any psychological theory.

I'm here to say that long distance relationships can be incredibly rewarding. Take note that I did not say fun. I attend the University of Alabama, and Drew, my boyfriend of nearly a year attends a small school in Montana. If you do the math, we're approximately 1,407 miles away (but who's counting)?? Before beginning our freshman year of college, we spent nearly every day together. Now, I'm lucky if I see him every three months or so. Often, the closest we have to being together is a FaceTime call. There are some days where I would give anything just for a hug or kiss. This sounds horrible right?

Here's the thing. I honestly wouldn't trade this experience. Long distance forces couples to strengthen their emotional, mental, and spiritual bond; without putting effort into this, the relationship will fail. Long distance forces you to develop as an individual through trials because your partner isn't there in person to fall on. Long distance allows you to experience college as an individual in ways that you may not if you were always together. Even more so, long distance develops the relationship itself.

If you do not see a legitimate future with the person you are dating, please do not even consider an LD relationship. I personally date to marry, as does my boyfriend, and if this were not the case, I don't think it would work. There has to be an immense level of trust between the two partners. The temptation is real, always present, and easy to succumb to in college. If you can't trust your partner to not cheat when you're together, why would you trust them when you're apart? I have personally had individuals in LD relationships nonchalantly tell me about their inappropriate escapades and cheating behavior. This consistently damages the image of LD relationships and causes people to believe it could never work.

However, when you truly love someone, it can make your relationship flourish to new heights. When you completely remove any physical aspects, everything has to rely on the emotional, mental, and spiritual. We have come to understand each other better as individuals, and how to help one another in different situations. His understanding of my emotions and feelings has grown exponentially, and vice versa.

We spend more time in the Word together than previously, because we both believe the relationship can only flourish if it is rooted in Christ. We send texts throughout the day and call whenever we can just to remind the other that we're thinking of them. Long distance causes us to truly cherish the time we do get to spend together, and it makes reunions that much sweeter. So, yes, long distance sucks. But, I wouldn't trade the growth we've experienced for anything.