What I Have Learned From My 3-Year, Long-Distance Relationship

What I Have Learned From My 3-Year, Long-Distance Relationship

It can work, if you are willing to work it.
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Going away to college can be an exciting experience. It can also bring about feelings of uncertainty and fear for people who may be in relationships coming out of high school who are then either going to separate colleges, or one person is staying home while the other leaves. I am in this relationship right now and have been for the past three years.

At first, my fiancé was the one to leave for college while I was still in high school. The next year, I graduated and he came back home but I went away. Long-distance relationships can be tricky but they do work if you are willing to work with them. Here are some tips I have found that help.

1. Trust

This is one of the most important, yet sometimes most challenging components of a long-distance, or really any relationship. If there is no trust, there is nothing. When you cannot see the other person every day, or a few times a week, you have to trust them. Trust also goes both ways. If one person trusts the other but this trust is not reciprocated, this can put a strain on the relationship. This level of trust is not built in a day, it takes time, so give it a moment and try to trust the other person.

2. Communication

I do not think I can say this enough. Talk to your partner. Talk to them. Seriously. In a long-distance relationship, this can be make-or-break. Your partner does not see you enough to know when something is wrong or if you are upset. They may not be able to tell if things are bothering you or know what is happening in your life because they are not there. So just talk to them. When my fiancé left for college I wrote him letters. I mostly did it because I like writing and I think pen pals and letter-writing are a dying art and I really love them but I also did it because if something happened during the course of my day that I would usually tell him about or he would usually be there for, I wanted him to know about. I wrote one every day with something important from that day, or just how I was feeling, or even just telling him that I missed him. Sometimes I would send a week's worth of letters to him, sometimes I would save them until he came back home and then I would give them to him to read, but either way I knew that he would still be a part of my day even if we did not get the chance to talk on the phone or text each other. Communication is so important. Talk to your partner. If you both have busy schedules and you know you will not be able to talk throughout the day, schedule a time when you know you can talk. Maybe once a week on a Sunday at six you facetime or something. Just talk to them.

3. Quality Time

I think one of the worst things in a long-distance relationship is not being able to see the other person for so long and then when you finally are able to see them, they are too busy doing other things to spend time with you. When you are with each other, be with each other. Give each other your undivided attention. This will make you both feel important, respected, loved, and wanted.

4. Know your limits

If something is not working, speak up. Long-distance is not for everyone, and leading someone on is not fun for anyone involved. It is better to be with someone who makes you happy and feel loved than being with someone because you feel like you have to be. If the long-distance is not working, let it go.

5. Warning signs

I have not experienced this personally but I have seen others around me who have so I thought it would be important. Sometimes when people get into long-distance relationships, or it can be really any relationship, it can become toxic. If you notice that your partner is trying to control your behavior, by telling you where you can and cannot go, who you can and cannot hang out with, what you can and cannot do and when, then these are some basic warning signs of a toxic relationship. They can stem from insecurities and lack of trust, especially in a long-distance relationship. If you are in a toxic or abusive relationship, seek help right away and try to remove yourself from this relationship.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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An Open Letter To My Boyfriend's Mom

A simple thank you is not enough.
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Your son and I have been dating a while now and I just wanted to thank you for everything.

Wow, where do I start? Ever since the day your son brought me into your home you have shown me nothing but kindness. I have not one negative thought about you and I am truly thankful for that. I first and foremost want to thank you for welcoming me with open arms. There are horror stories of mothers resenting their son's girlfriends and I am blessed there is no resentment or harsh feelings.

Thank you for treating me like one of your children, with so much love but knowing exactly when to tease me.

Thank you for sticking up for me when your son teases me, even though I know it’s all in good fun it's always comforting knowing you have someone by your side.

Thank you for raising a man who respects women and knows how to take responsibility of mistakes and not a boy who is immature and doesn’t take responsibility.

Thank you for always including me in family affairs, I may not be blood family but you do everything you can to make sure I feel like I am.

Thank you for letting me make memories with your family.

There is nothing I value more in this world then memories with friends and family and I am thankful you want and are willing to include me in yours. I have so much to thank you for my thoughts keep running together.

The most important thing I have to thank you for is for trusting me with your son. I know how precious and valuable he is and I won't break his heart. I will do everything I can to make him happy. This means more than you could ever imagine and I promise I will never break your trust.

The second most important thing I must thank you for is for accepting me for who I am. Never have you ever wished I looked like another girl or acted like another girl. You simply love and care for me and that’s all I could ever ask. Every person in this world is a unique different person and understanding that means a lot.

The third most important thing I must thank you is teaching me how to one day in the future treat a potential girlfriend that I may interact with as a mother. I am not a mother, but I one day plan to be. If I ever have a son it is because of how you treated me that I am able to be a humble loving mother to this new face that could one day walk into my door. How you have treated me has taught me how I should one day be in the future and I thank you for that.

This may seem all over the place but that’s how my brain gets when I try and thank you for everything you have done for me. It’s all so much and even the little things are so important so I promise my scattered thoughts are all with good intentions and not meant to bombard you. I just want to get the idea across to you that you are important and special to me and everything you do does not go unnoticed.

Sincerely,

Your Son’s Girlfriend

Cover Image Credit: Christian Images and Quotes

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An Open Thank-You Letter From The Heart, For The Soul-Sister Who Deserves It

Being 794 miles apart from your best friend can be difficult and tough to handle but somehow we make it all work and I could never thank you enough for still being in my life!

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Having a best friend to go through milestones and the ups and downs of life with is truly incredible.

I never knew that I would ever become so close with another person that was not family till I met you! You came into my life so unexpectedly and have been by my side ever since. Eight and a half years as best friends seems like a lifetime, but not when I have you by my side!

There have been so many highs and lows that you have been there for in my life. From losing animals, family members passing away and friends coming and going from our lives. You have always been the shoulder I could cry on and the one I could turn to for any advice. No matter if I needed advice on a boy, another friend, my crazy family or just life in general. There will not be a day that goes by that I will not be thankful that I have you as my best friend! God truly gifted me the sweetest, kindest and loving human to be my soul-sister!

Thank you for bringing me into your life and letting me experience so much with you! We are apart of each other's families and forever will be. We go to family dinners, parties, events and more together! You will be my maid of honor one day and I hope yours! My future children will call you Aunt Sam and never go their lives without having you in them!

This past year and a half have been tough being so apart and missing out on so much within each of our lives while being away at college yet here we are still as close as we have always been! When we get back together it is as if we were never apart and I love every second we have together! Getting to see you while being home from school during breaks is a gift and a blessing all in itself! Yes, going to different colleges and making new friends can be extremely hard at times but I am glad to know that even at the end of each day I can still call you up on the phone will anything on my mind and you will always be there!

There is not another friendship out there that could compare to the one that you and I share! Our friendship, sisterhood, and love for each other and one another's family grows with each day! I truly cherish you and the kind spirit in which you are!

As we enter into the next semester of our second year at college I hope you know that you are loved and cherished by not only me but many more of those in your life! Having a best friend like you in such joy, thank you for never leaving me!

I love you dearly my soul-sister!

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