Being miles apart from your partner is never easy, but here’s a few tips to help you out
Whether your partner has gone to uni or moved to a different country, keeping things going in a long-distance relationship (LDR) can be both difficult and rewarding in equal measures.
Here's some advice on how to cope and make the most out of your LDR.
Stay in contact
It’s simple but so effective. Try and find some time to regularly talk to your partner about how things are going and what you’ve been up to.
"Always keep a high level of communication,” says Kraggor. “Make sure you’re always honest and understand each other’s feelings.”
Just hearing their voice can sometimes make things seem that little bit easier, so having a weekly catch up on FaceTime can be a great way to keep in touch.
Sometimes life can get in the way and you may have to reschedule, but if you stay flexible you can always make it up to each other another time.
It's crucial to be honest with your partner about how you're feeling - it can make things worse if you're feeling upset or angry and don’t share it.
“Make sure you can be there for them whenever they need you,” says Kraggor. “It’s the simple things like letting your partner know what you’re doing and what you’ve got planned.”
If you feel like your partner doesn’t understand how you’re feeling, try to talk to them honestly and openly about things as soon as you can.
Have time to yourself
It can be tempting to stay at home and just text your partner all the time when they’re away, but it's so important to have your own life and independence when they’re not there.
It’ll make things a lot easier (and more fun) if you make some friends and schedule things to do in your free time – plus, it’ll give you something to tell your partner about when you next speak.
See each other regularly
It can be difficult to make time to see each other when you’re both busy, but the key thing to do is find a balance.
“I was in a long-distance relationship for around a year and a half,” says Jimmitybob. “The excitement as you approach a meet-up is indescribable.
“The warmth that spreads across your whole body when you're finally reunited is like nothing else.”
Cost is always going to be a factor when it comes to seeing each other, but you’ll get a cheaper deal if you plan your trips in advance.
If you're feeling organised then you could even start a fund where you both put a little bit of money each week to make up travel costs.
Also try and take it in turns to visit each other - it's only fair!
Random romantic gestures
It can be hard to be romantic when you aren’t near your partner, but there are a lot of little things that you can do to brighten up your partner's day.
Send a letter
Sending a letter is old-fashioned but that's what’s so good about it. Try and take the time to sit down and write your partner a letter telling them how you’re feeling, what you’ve been doing and how much you’re looking forward to seeing them.
You’ll find it helps you to get these feelings out and your partner will really enjoy reading them.
Send a gift or flowers
“Another key point is to make sure you treat it with the same mentality as you would with a real-life relationship,” says Kraggor. “Don't just think that you can relax on certain things just because you’re two screens apart most of the time.“
It might be something you only do occasionally, but it can be lovely to send your partner a gift. It doesn’t have to be an expensive or overblown gesture - it can be as simple as remembering that your partner likes stripy socks and sending them a pair they’ll like.
It can be a pleasant surprise for your partner and it shows how well you know them. It also shows that you’re still thinking about them even though you’re apart.
Spend a weekend away
Try and agree to go somewhere that’s away from both of your homes, so you’ll be able to go out and explore a new place together.
You may have to plan and budget for it, but it’ll be worth it to do something different together.
Keep a diary
It's a nice idea to keep a diary of how you’re feeling. You don’t have to do it every day - you can just add to it whenever you feel like it.
You can then go through your diary together whenever you see your partner next and talk about what you’ve been doing.
What if it isn’t working?
Long-distance relationships can be hard and – like with any relationship - they don't always work out.
Breaking up with someone is hard enough when you see them every day, but it can be even harder when you’re apart, as you’ll have to decide when and how to do it.
While there’s no easy way to break up with someone, there are some things you can do to make it easier.
Give them some warning
Make sure they’re aware things aren’t going well and that you need to talk to them about your relationship before you go and see them. Hopefully it won’t come as too much of a surprise then.
Think about the location
Try to make sure you talk to them when you’re in their hometown and when you can leave relatively sharply.
This will mean that you don’t have the uncomfortable situation of breaking up then still having to spend the rest of the weekend with them.
Cut down contact
While it can be easy to just slip into the routine of talking to your partner again, it’s important that you take some time apart before attempting to be friends.
Try your best to make things work
All you can do is try your best and if it doesn’t work out then it wasn’t meant to be.
“They're not ideal by any stretch but if you're both prepared to put the effort in then they're great,” says furryface12.
Being in a long-distance relationship can be tough, but it can be well worth the effort if everything works out.
“My girlfriend is from Austria and there was a period of time when we lived apart for about 4 or 5 months,” says MNUK. “It was a bit difficult at times, but we managed it.
“I think it's perfectly doable if you're both mature about it and there's an end goal in sight.”
Try to be romantic and keep things interesting but, most importantly, make sure you’re enjoying yourself. After all, that’s what love’s all about!
How do you make your long-distance relationship work? Let us know in the comments below!
Related on TSR
Got long-distance relationship issues? Head to the Relationships Forum
Worried about feeling lonely? Here's how to make friends during Freshers