You always hear about people who struggle with long-distance relationships, but you don't really hear about long-distance friendships. But having long-distance friendships are just as hard, emotionally and physically. You see people who have their friends and see them every day, and you remember that you can only see them maybe once a year. You feel the same pressures that people feel when they’re a part of a long-distance relationship and they see other couples. It's also a very discouraging thing, because long-distance friendships are never really acknowledged but they exist and they can be such a struggle.
The positive aspect of this type of friendship, is truly learning to appreciate your time with someone because you know it’ll be a while before you see them again. You see them so little that when you do see them you have such an incredible time with them, and you live it to the fullest because you want to have the best time possible before you’re forced to say goodbye. It truly builds your character, and teaches you to appreciate time so much more than you would typically. Having friends that you only see once a year -- if that-- teaches you to cherish every good moment, and to truly live in the moment. To me, that was one of the outstanding life lessons that I learned within the time I became friends with people who lived hours away from me.
It's not easy to deal with it all the time because of course you miss them a ton, just like when you miss your boyfriend/girlfriend in a long-distance relationship. There are moments upon moments where you wish you could see them in real life so that you could physically be there for them during the bad times. Through all of it you make it work when you really care about them, and you know it's worth it when you have all of the best times with them when you finally do get to hang out with them in person. You keep connections like this through proper connection, and being genuine. Personally, with my friends I video chat or text them a majority of the time, and we make plans in the summer to meet up.
My long-distance friends mean the world to me, they’re what keep me humble and continuously a better person. I feel like having these types of friendships prove that more people need to appreciate each moment they live in because you don't know when or if you’ll see them again. These friendships help grow incredible connections, you become so close this way or at least in my experience. I don't even really consider my long distance friends to really be friends- because to me they’re more like family.