Long Distance Relationships - How to Survive & Thrive as a Couple

With more and more people meeting online, long-distance relationships have become almost the norm these days. But as many long-distance couples soon find out, keeping each other happy when you live far away can present it's own set of unique challenges.

Long Distance Dating
Can your long-distance romance survive?
Learn the best ways to keep it fresh and exciting

Understanding how distance effects your relationship is the first big step. Couples who can't be around each other all the time will lack certain things, from the intimacy of constant closeness to the comfort of face-to-face contact. Getting past these hurdles can be hard, and if you're not careful, can tear the relationship apart before it really has the chance to get off the ground.

And while all relationships have their share of heartache, longing, and jealousy... these feelings are always amplified by being so far apart. As you go through your daily routine alone, you'll often wonder what your partner is doing; where he or she is, who they're with, and what they're up to while they're so far away from you.

Below are some of the more basic tips to making a long-distance romance work. The more of these tips you can apply to your own relationship, the more stable it will become, and the better off you'll be as a couple.

Accepting Your Time Apart - Not Fighting Over Distance

If you've fallen for someone who lives far away, or even clear on the other side of the country or world, you'll need to accept certain parts of your relationship as non-standard. You'll also need to accept that your boyfriend or girlfriend will have much more a life of their own than if you lived close by, saw each other daily, and connected on a much more frequent basis.

The most common mistake here is to begrudge your lover for being so far away. This won't happen at first... in the golden "honeymoon" portion of your relationship you might even think the distance is cute. But eventually, over time? The loneliness will drive you to feel a sort of resentment for not being able to be with your boyfriend or girlfriend. And when this happens, be absolutely sure not to take that resentment out on your partner, because it's obviously not his or her fault.

Fights between couples will always happen - even long-distance lovers. TryPicnik.com to make sure those fights aren't over living so far apart, because this is often a problem that's not readily fixable. Blame can't be assigned either, so any sort of arguing here will go on and on forever.

Remember: being frustrated that you can't hold your boyfriend or girlfriend is more than common... but in today's modern world there are other ways of staying in touch and instantly being in contact. Rather than vent over something you can't have, be content with with you can.

Establishing The Ground Rules of Your Long-Distance Relationship

Living so far apart, it's easy to feel disconnected or detached from the person you're dating. But in the beginning, it's also easy to gloss over exactly what the ground rules of such a relationship actually are.

If you're going to be exclusive and not see other people, make sure both parties know this. Say it, establish it, and then let it go.

For a more casual long-distance relationship jealousy will be a lot more of an issue; if you're still seeing other people, each of you runs the risk of losing your partner to someone closer and more local to them. Be aware of this going in; if your lover isn't looking for a heavy commitment, don't vest too much of yourself into the relationship until (and unless) monogamy has been established.

Talk to or Communicate With Each Other Every Single Day

Long distance couples don't have the advantage of constant physical contact, so you need to make up for this in other ways. Luckily, we live in a day and age where getting in touch with someone is as simple as pushing a few buttons and waiting to hear their voice... or even see them face to face on your computer screen.

Long Distance Romance
Keep in touch to remain connected

The first thing to look into is Skype. This free program allows you to video-chat with your long-distance love, as long as each of you has a webcam. At the very least you can use Skype to instant message each other back and forth, if you don't already use Yahoo Messenger or AOL's IM program.

More important of course, is your cellphone. Nothing beats speaking to your boyfriend or girlfriend on a daily basis, even if it's just to see how their day went. Keep in mind that calling too often or too frequently during work hours can be somewhat of a nuisance, so be aware if talking to you becomes more of a chore than an actual treat for your partner. But definitely use your cellphone to keep in touch every day, especially at night when the two of you will be more lonely.

Text-messaging is another good way of touching base. Make sure not to suck up too much time with this however, as some texting conversations can go on for hours and hours. Many people would rather have a phone call here; it's quicker and you get to hear your partner's voice. But a text to let your lover know how much you miss and care for them? That's always good.

Forget the Distance... STILL Do Things Together As a Couple

Believe it or not, there are TONS of things you can still do as a couple, even in a long distance relationship! The more of these things you share together, the more common ground you'll have, and the stronger your romance will be.

Start off by realizing that even if you live far away, you can still watch TV or Movies together. For television, look into getting a Hulu Plus subscription. This enables you to watch hundreds of TV programs as a couple, and you can even stay on the phone together while you watch. You might be on different couches, but the experience of being together is a lot more fun than watching TV on your own.

For movies, get a subscription to GreenCine Movie Rentals. They're way cheaper than NetFlix, and offer access to even more obscure and 'indy' titles you can share with your partner.

NetFlix does allow you to stream movies directly to you computer or television, meaning you and your boyfriend or girlfriend can watch the same movies simultaneously, no matter how far apart you might live. Again, connecting by phone call enables you to share the same laughs and excitement you would if you were in the same room, watching the movie together.

Reading a book together, or even a series of books, is another great idea. If you're a long-distance couple, chances are you have more time on your hands than people who date and live close by. Use this time to read something of interest to the both of you, giving you something else cool you can talk about and share.

Hobbies are another great way to maintain some common ground. If you and your boyfriend or girlfriend share certain interests, you can join an online club or even a forum together. This keeps you 'around' each other even when you're not physically around, and it gives you something to talk about then next time you're on the phone.

Find Ways to Be Thoughtful From Far Away

From there you can find other thoughtful ways to stay in each other's day. Send your lover an E-Card, or go out to the store and buy them a real one. A hand-written card has a much more personalized feel than an email or text-message, and will mean a lot more to your lover when he or she opens the mailbox.

Long Distance Gift Ideas For Men

If you're a guy, send your girl flowers. Do something other than roses, too. FTD Flowers makes some nice bouquets at decent prices, and their flowers are always fresh and beautiful. You can also Save up to 25% on Flowers with this link.

Forget about using 1-800-Flowers; the florists they deal with tend to send out build-your-own arrangements that look nothing like they do in the photo.

Chocolates are also a girl's favorite, so don't forget about them either. To choose something non-standard and different, check out ZChocolate, an amazing French Chocolatier with some very cool and very affordable gift boxes. Send one to your girl, and you can even have the box engraved with your own personal phrase or saying just for her. When the chocolate is gone, it's something she can keep - and keep things in - to remember you by.

Long Distance Gift Ideas For Women

If you're a girl, send your guy some really cool Web Undies or boxer shorts, and demand he send you a photo of him wearing them. They come in all different men's themes and sports teams, so it's easy to choose one your guy will like.

Want to go one better? Pick out some sexy lingerie from 3 Wishes for yourself, and send him a photo he'll absolutely LOVE... or if you're a little more modest, a photo the lingerie you promise to wear for him the next time you're together.

The point here is you want to be creative, and you want to keep the excitement alive, even long distance. In fact, living far away from each other can often build some great sexual tension, so make sure you play upon that too. Sexy emails and text-messages are a great way to keep the romance going, even when you can't be around the person you're in love with.

Look To The Future - Promising to Ultimately Be Together

Long-distance relationships need the promise of eventually being together in order to survive. No one holds on forever; the possibility of living together or even marrying your partner needs to be present in order for you both to see a future.

This doesn't have to happen right away, and it doesn't need to be etched in stone. But you do need to at least talk about the future, and include some sort of scenario in which the two of you are eventually sleeping in the same bed.

Whether you're apart due to school, college, work, or you just met online and happen to live far away - both sides of any long-term relationship need to know that one day, someday? The two of you will be a lot more than just long-distance lovers.

Trust Your Partner and They Will Trust You

Let's face it: insecurity is a big part of any long-distance romance, and you need to minimize it. Because if you allow your imagination to run wild, you'll eventually end up creating all sorts of wild scenarios in which your lover is losing interest, ditching your relationship, or even spending time with or seeing someone else.

Dating Advice Far Away

Try to put a lid on this as quickly as possible by NOT falsely accusing your partner or trying to control them. You can always ask what they did last night, but don't make the question into an interrogation.

Relax, let go, and believe in your relationship. Unless your partner gives you reason not to trust them, the best thing to do is allow them a certain measure of trust.

And on the flip side of the coin? Assuage your boyfriend or girlfriend's fears by letting you know how much you love them, care for them, and plan to remain LOYAL to them. In a long-distance relationship you can't stress this enough... and your partner can't hear it enough either.

No matter how many times you say it, your lover will never get tired of hearing how committed you are to the relationship. They'll also never tire of hearing how much you miss them. It doesn't matter how far apart you are, they still need to hear it - so make sure you tell them early and often.

Make Plans to Visit Your Long-Distance Boyfriend or Girlfriend

No matter what, no long-distance romance will survive unless you eventually and periodically see each other. Being pen-pals only goes so far, and although emails and text-messages are good, they'll never take the place of physical human contact.

So wherever your partner lives, make sure you plan to see each other. Try to split thing up so that sometimes you go to them, and sometimes they come to you. Or if it's better off on one side of the map? Split the cost down the middle, so that each of you has a stake in making the next visit happen.

Making The Most of What Little Time You Have Together

Flying or driving long distances to see someone you're in a relationship is a crucial part of keeping that relationship going, and make certain you make the most of the limited time you have together. This includes making every moment count!

Check out these ideas for 300 Creative Dates, and choose the ones that you think your partner would like most. Planning out your visit is the best way to show your lover that you've put thought into seeing them, and it makes the time you do spend together a lot more special.

Beyond that, if you're looking for even more ways to spend time together as a long distance couple? Check out the following for some really cool ideas:

10 Great Things Long Distance Couples Can Do Together

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Long Distance Love    said on 09-19-2011

Loving your new website! It is amazing, keep it up.

BDerrick    said on 09-13-2011

I think you should call but not every day. Calling too much is a sign of insecurity and you could drive your boyfriend or girlfriend away. Texting is okay, but same thing - not crazy constant texts that annoy your bf/gf to the point where it becomes a chore for them.

JennaTudor10    said on 09-13-2011

Distance don't mean a thing if you're in love with each other!

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