LDR: an abbreviation of long distance relationship (I will be using this a lot in this article to make it easier)
Did you know that 14 million couples would define themselves as having a long distance relationship, with at least 32.5% of those being college students or younger? With a growing number of teens getting into long distance relationships, it's important to know how to cope with being in this situation.
From experience, the first thing I'd say is even though some LDRs can last longer than typical relationships, they are usually shorter. For example, my first one was with someone who I was quite good friends with who moved to America, but it only lasted for a week, whereas in the same circumstances with a different person in a typical relationship it lasted for around six months or so. I'm currently in another LDR and we are currently coming up towards our 6 month mark (as of date of writing which is the 14th of August 2017) so length really does vary.
My advice for anyone in a long distance relationship would be:
• You have to communicate clearly effectively. One of the things that I struggle with is clear communication. When me and my current girlfriend arranged to meet, it ended up that when I got there she wasn’t there due to a lack of clear communication, which in turn caused problems with our relationship for a while.
• You need to trust the other person. If you can’t trust the other person because you feel like they might cheat on you, that can damage the relationship in a major way, and may make it become toxic.
• Regular contact is key, but don’t go over the top, if you are texting all the time, it can get too much, but not enough could make them or you feel isolated and maybe even break the relationship.
• Respect time differences (if there is one). Sometimes, when there is a time difference, you might accidentally text them while they’re asleep, but if you do and they don’t reply straight away, don’t get mad. This is what broke my first LDR because they would text while I was sleeping and then get upset because I didn’t reply straight away, which regularly left me feeling like I’d let them down.
• Be open with them. Just like in a typical relationship, it’s important to talk about how you feel. If you feel like it isn’t working, you need to tell them. Don’t suffer through it to keep them happy. It’s important that you both know how the other person feels and that you both feel comfortable to talk to the other person about things. If you feel like you have to hide things from the other person, the relationship is unhealthy.
• When you see each other in real life, don’t cram for missed time. It may seem like you need to make up for time you missed with each other, but you don’t. Just enjoy the time you have together at that time, otherwise it may be less enjoyable.
And finally, never give up! It may seem hard at the time, but I promise, it’ll be worth it in the end. It makes the time you can spend with each other that little bit more special. Remember, if you need more advice on this topic, my Instagram messages are always open for you to speak to me and I’ll try my best to help. I hope this helped and I wish you the best!
Teenagers With Experience is an online platform ran by teenagers for teenagers. We provide support through sharing our own experiences and providing advice based from this. If you need support, feel free to reach out to us on one of our social media platforms. We will do our best to support you and if we feel we cannot we will direct you to more suited, professional support.