For those who are reading this and may be struggling with a long distance relationship, I hope that this article can be of some guidance to you and help you find some healthy solutions. I first want to start off by saying that by no means am I an expert in this category and I am learning new things every single day. This will merely be a collection of the most important things that I have learned in my four year relationship with my girlfriend that have made me appreciate her more and get the most out of time spent away from each other. This is going to sound corny and cliché and probably overused, but the two most important facets of a healthy long distance relationship are communication and patience. With these two, you will not only learn so much about your partner, but you will learn to appreciate them more than you ever thought you could.
Good communication can make your life a lot easier. I don’t think enough people understand this. It is funny and ironic that this is something that I struggle with even today, considering I am quite literally a communication major. Being communicative with your partner when long distance is essential because it really is just a matter of them wanting to stay in the loop of your life. As college students, we can all understand that a college semester can be busy and hectic and you can easily lose track of the time. It is always better to let your partner know how your week is looking so they aren’t thrown off if you’re unable to get to the phone when they call. I always try to send out a text that “I’m going to be busy now, but will call as soon as I can.” You can always make time if you truly care and your partner will understand and appreciate your effort. It is also really important to never hold back feelings from your partner. If you’re mad about something, let them know! If you’re upset with something, tell them! Although you may not be physically there to help the situation, you can still help over the phone and your partner will appreciate that you are taking the time out of your day to support them with whatever is going on in their lives. This promotes trust in a relationship and I can assure you that it goes a long way.
As the saying goes, patience is a virtue. The true key to patience is the ability to look at things in the long-run and be okay with your current situation. For my relationship, I know that although we cannot spend as much time together as we both would like to right now, we both can cherish the future when we will be able to get that time together we have been wanting. In my opinion, that is what makes the wait worthwhile. Looking at this from a different perspective, patience comes also in the form of being able to understand and tolerate whoever you are with. This means being there for them on their worst days and supporting them in times when you may feel overwhelmed with things in your life. It is with your patience and understanding that your partner will see that you not only care about them, but care enough to put your own emotions and ordeals aside to help them out.
I hope that this snippet of advice comes useful to anyone who needs it right now. I will leave you with a verse from Corinthians that my mom has put up on our refrigerator:
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud…..Love never fails: Corinthians 13:4