|picture from april27th.tumblr.com|
Let me just start by saying: Long distance relationships suck. I don't suggest moving halfway across the world and falling in love when you know full well that your work visa is going to expire in six months. But like so many people, the man I love is not exactly the boy next door. I'm lucky enough to have him here with me now, but here's a few things I learned about how to survive a long distance relationship and making it work when you're miles apart.
One thing my boyfriend and I did that really helped us stay connected was we created a "relationship tumblr" and posted all sorts of things to it. I actually just read through the whole thing and it made me laugh so much. Tumblr lets you post pictures straight from your webcam so it's really easy to give them quick, cute update pictures of what you're up to. We posted songs that reminded us of each other. Ben even posted a video of himself dancing to my favorite Smiths song. It made me smile every time I watched it. It was so nice to come home every day and check what he'd posted on the tumblr for me. One day on Skype he told me to check the tumblr for what he'd posted, so I logged on expecting to see a picture of Pauly D or something, but instead I saw this. It was the best moment ever!
Another way to keep connected and keep them updated is get a twitter account. Usually there is nothing worse than people who constantly tweet about what they're eating or watching on tv, but when you're in a long distance relationship you actually kind of care about that mundane stuff. With social networking nowadays, it's easier than ever to be at each others fingertips. Don't tell other people what your twitter account is, and then you won't feel you have to censor it for the masses. It can be your guys' own personal chit chat tool.
Skype is your best friend. Oh my god, what would we have done without Skype. It's so wonderful to see their face when they wake up (yes, you have to get up early to say goodnight to them, it's worth it.) or actually see them laugh, instead of just hearing it. It's important to put in the effort to make sure you don't slack on calling each other and that you're online when you said you would be. Remember, your both sex deprived so you're going to be a bit moody. It takes two minutes to install Skype if you're staying at a friends house for the night. Another thing we used to do was watch TV shows online with the show open in one window, and Skype open on the other side so we felt like we were watching together.
Send them packages of things significant to where you are. For example, I really miss English things like Jaffa Cakes and PG Tips tea, so that would have been a perfect thing for Ben to send me. You can write them a nice hand written card that you can even spritz with your perfume. I know it sounds really, really cheesy but scent and memory are very closely linked and it's comforting to smell them when you're feeling down.
Resist other people. You are most likely going to meet people of the opposite sex and when you're lonely and craving love they may seem tempting. Also, as I mentioned before, you're sex deprived and propably pulling your hair out with frustration. It's easy to forget, after a few cocktails and some pick up lines, that you've got someone miles away who you love and that this random guy is not better than him. Trust is so important when you're far away from each other. Be strong, go home and have a wank. You'll be with the one you really want soon enough.
Don't get married to your computer. Go out and live your life! In order to keep your Skype conversations interesting, you have to have interesting things to talk about. Most of the conversations you'll end up having will be about what you did that day, and I doubt your boyfriend wants to hear about the Real Housewives marathon you watched, no matter how much drama there was. Go to concerts, art shows, paint them pictures, make an awesome summer checklist and then do it! Make sure you continue being the vibrant, exciting person they fell in love with.
Don't expect every call to be perfect. You will still argue sometimes and there will be times when you have nothing interesting to say to each other. When that happens, it's better to just end to call and don't dwell on it. Nobody gets along all the time and just because your last phone call was a bit lacking, it doesn't mean they don't love you or they're out there boning some loser. Sometimes you're just not in the mood to chat, even to the person you love most in the world.
Well, there you have it. It's not easy, and I'm not saying I never cried or doubted if we would make it. But we did, and it was worth every minute we spent apart to be together now. I wish you all the best of luck, and commend you for your dedication to your relationship!