Let’s put the finger on the pulse of long distance relationships and give a final verdict: “Do long distance relationships suck or not?”
In my seven years of long distance dating I’ve felt and heard it all, and if that wasn’t enough – I’ve spend the past two years researching and compassionately working with a few hundred people who struggled with a lot of frustrating problems in their long distance relationships.
And after feeling and hearing it all, I’ve decided to make a list of 10 most common complains that people have about long distance relationships and see if I can manage to make you reconsider them and maybe even get you inspired to believe in your long distance relationship along the way!
1 | They don’t seem like real relationships!
A long distance relationship can easily fall into the “illusion of a relationship” category, where people just lie to themselves that they have a relationship when in reality they just fantasize about an impossible love.
The truth is, however, that long distance relationships can be, and most of the times *are real* relationships, as long as there is love and commitment between partners.
In my experience the only thing that determines whether a long distance relationship is real or not – is not the distance, but the presence (or lack of) reciprocal love and commitment.
2 | Facing people’s disbelief is hard
Most people don’t believe in long distance relationships, and that’s a sad truth that I set myself on a journey to change. Our parents, our friends and colleagues will unavoidably judge and criticize us for choosing to be “masochistic” to ourselves by dating long distance.
And while they are right to some degree, they forget one important thing: that we don’t chose to have an LDR, we are forced into it because we love dearly our partners. And we are too quite insecure about making a long distance relationship work.
It’s just like having a physical disability – we don’t chose to have one, we just have it, and we don’t particularly enjoy it (until we do end up accepting it).
That’s why I like to tell people who judge or criticize my LDR to either encourage me or shut up – because they are hurting me even more.
3 | The long waiting is painful
Ohh, I hate waiting for something. It makes me feel nervous and restless. And waiting weeks and long months before meeting my girlfriend is the apogee of waiting. It’s plain painful.
More than that – we can learn to stop waiting and start loving an enjoying the relationship that we have now! Because “NOW” is the only moment we have, and, whether you’re afar or close to your partner, you can chose to enjoy “the now” or postpone the enjoyment for some future date.
And guess what? NOW is the time to enjoy the intense relationship that you have, no matter what the circumstances are.
4 | They don’t work anyways!
Not all long distance relationships work. Many of them are just the beginning of the end for a couple who used to have a classic relationship; and quite often a naïve waste of time for couples who met online.
But not all classic relationships end up in marriage and love for-ever-after either. And it’s for the better – because not all relationships are actually meant to work out – relationships go through a natural selection process and only the partners who best fit each other stay together.
So it’s okay that some LDRs don’t work out, what’s not okay is to say that ALL LDRs don’t work out, which is plain wrong. Because they do work as long as one main condition is being met: the presence of reciprocal love and commitment, which makes everything else fall right into its place.
5 | High costs
What can I say, it can be very expensive to have a long distance relationship. Depending on how far you live from each other, or in what countries, or even on what continents you live… travel costs, calling fees and shipping services for gifts and packages can make it a very expensive relationship.
But here’s the thing:
Money spent for a good cause, are money well spent.
If spending 400$ to visit her will give you the experience of a life time, then it’s worth it. If spending 10$ to have a 30 minute chat with her every once in a while makes you happy, then it’s totally worth it.
And let’s not kid ourselves that classic relationships are not expensive, okay!
I know I lived 5 months with my girlfriend before, and now we closed the distance and believe me when I tell you – the expenses can go way higher!
Eating out from time to time, traveling together, getting each other little gifts, a little partying, cooking together – all of this can make your monthly bill much larger than your average LDR month.
6 | Never-ending doubts and jealousy!
Jealousy is a common issue in most relationships, but add distance to the equation and what you’ll get is extreme fear and insecurity manifested through constant stress and jealousy.
But let me tell you a secret:
“Studies show that even though in long distance relationships we are more insecure of our partners cheating on us, the reality is that couples in LDRs are NO MORE LIKELY than others to cheat on one another.”
So while jealousy CAN be an issue, no matter if you are in a LDR or not, you must learn to manage it in a healthy way and trust your partner the right way.
7 | Running out of things to talk about
Talking for hours in a row on the phone or on Skype can become a big pain in the ass after a while.
After you have covered most surface topics about you lives and personalities and you got to the point when you feel like you KNOW each other very well – apparently it seems like there is nothing else left to talk about, other than each other’s trivial daily activities.
The reality, however, is that what you think you know about your partner is just the tip of the iceberg, and there is so much more you can talk about when you have the right questions to ask.
Plus there is nothing wrong with talking about the mundane daily details – it’s even necessary in order for you to feel involved in each others lives while living apart.
8 | Uncertainty about closing the distance
It’s hard to fight for something that is uncertain, and often long distance relationships are very confusing and full of uncertainty about the future – and that’s what makes it very hard for couples to believe in their relationships and be dedicated to making them work and survive the distance.
But there is a solution to all this overwhelming uncertainty, and this solution is very simple, but also very powerful… and that is replacing the FEAR of not knowing what will happen in the future with CURIOSITY about what will happen in the future!
Because fear stresses you out and discourages you, while curiosity makes you enthusiastic and hopeful. And when you regain your energy, hope and start believing in your relationship – long distance dating can become so much easier!
So, chose to be curious about what the future is holding for you, and enjoy the current moment!
9 | No physical intimacy
This should have been the number one reason right? 🙂 Hell yeah! I love sex myself, and I am pretty sure that you do too, like most other human beings out there – because whether we want to admit it or not, we are all sexual beings and sex is an important part of our lives.
So being miles away from each other means no physical sex – and that down right SUCKS!
The good news, however, it’s that our separations are temporary, and when being apart we have a magical little thing called a webcam – which makes things so much easier and bearable!
And then, when we finally meet after weeks or months of waiting – we’re like in a honeymoon, hardly getting out of bed and not getting enough of each other.
Plus let’s not forget about our rich imagination which can get us a log way when webcams and visits are not around.
Skype/phone sex, sexy texting (sexting), erotic letters, sexual visualizations are just a few of the ways to make your long distance sex life satisfying. For more ideas on spicing up your sex life check out my Turn On The Sexual Play guide.
10 | Boredom, predictability and routine
Omg! It can get so boring sometimes to just sit on a chair, look at a computer screen and “talk” to your girlfriend. Or talk on the phone for hours about all kind of unimportant topics, and then have to deal with awkward silences and doing that over and over again for weeks and months in a row.
How fun is that, right!?
Well, it isn’t sometimes, I agree.
But it’s not like long distance relationship are doomed to boredom, predictability and routine – it’s more like LDRs are an opportunity for us to learn to be more creative.
We humans like to create routines and follow them over and over again, because it makes our lives easier and we don’t have to think as much. But it’s also routine that can make our lives and relationship predictable and plane boring.
But as I like to say “boredom is a choice” and it’s up to your creativity to make your conversations more fun and exciting or not. But of course, I know that being creative sounds hard. And it often is!
That’s why I’ve put together a lot of resources to make it easier for you to have fun and endless conversations with your girlfriend on Skype, phone or even face to face when you meet.
So what do you think now? Are long distance relationships doomed to suck?
I think it depends on how we chose to look at them, and how we deal with the various struggles that we have to face.
If we’re mature enough to understand that it’s just a different type of relationship, we believe that it works if it’s worth it, and use our intelligent brains to make our relationship more fun and enjoyable – then hell yeah! It will not just work but be a great romantic experience.
But listen, the list is NOT over yet. There are 10+ more reasons why LDRs can be hard: READ PART 2