So we’re now reaching the depths of first semester, and whether you are first, second, third year or a finalist, a long distance relationship can sometimes be straining to say the least. After spending a bliss-filled summers holidays seeing one another practically everyday, being miles and miles apart and hour long drives and uncomfortable train journeys away can be quite a shock to the system, making it difficult to maintain a strong, healthy relationship.
Now, though I cannot promise to solve every single relationship issue you may have, here are a few suggestions which could just help avoid that argument that’s been brewing since you went out last FND.
- Set some ground rules. If you don’t want them phoning you at ridiculous o’clock when they’re drunk and you have lectures tomorrow – tell them. If you don’t want to text every single minute of the day, just say it! Believe me, those week-long arguments which all began with “WHY DIDN’T YOU TEXT ME BACK” will seem ridiculous a few weeks down the line… Say what you expect from your relationship, and what you intend to give, so you’re both clear.
- Keep in contact, often. Relationships rely on communication and it is especially difficult when you’re miles apart to know what the other person is feeling, so a phone call every now and then doesn’t go a miss – you can tell a lot more about how a person is feeling if you can hear their voice.
- Make use of Skype/Facetime. It may not feel quite the same as being with them, but a simple smile, laugh and funny face can be enough to make the distance a hell of a lot better!
- DON’T GET JEALOUS. It’s easy to fall into the habit of questioning your other half about every member of the opposite sex that they come into contact with – we’ve all done it. But next time you see them stood next to that guy/girl smiling happily in that photo they’ve just been tagged in, REMEMBER they are with you for a reason. A long distance relationship requires time, money and effort, each of which they would probably not waste if they weren’t bothered.
- As a student this might seem like something you can’t afford to do often, and yes, you obviously don’t want to miss FND and Echos every weekend, but a visit every now and then can do long distance relationships the world of good. Plus, if they’re coming to visit you it’s something different for them, and if they’re at uni, vice versa. I’m not saying visit every weekend, though – keep a good balance.
- Introduce them to your friends. Jealousy is only natural in a relationship, and if your other half is constantly coming to visit and you’re keeping him locked away in your room 24/7 it can be natural for them to question ‘why?’ or ‘Is there someone he/she doesn’t want me to meet?’ So even if it’s just a quick ‘hello’ going past the kitchen, do it, it’ll help!
- Send stuff! Letters, texts, presents, anything! Just let them know you’re thinking about them, whilst not letting them forget about you!
- Finally – Be honest. If you’re feeling down, tell them. If you want space, tell them. If you don’t want to take your phone to the library and text them, tell them! But don’t let things build up.
Now, off you go and get loved up, have fun and good luck!