Honestly, this list will probably be unbalanced. I think we can all agree that LDRs are not the ideal position to be in. But I’m feeling lonely and I feel like ranting, so, tada.
First are the cons, so we can end on a positive note.
• You can’t see your partner. Bam, list done. Snarkity snark.
• The status of your relationship is often either directly or indirectly influenced by your internet connection. Trying to have a real conversation can be extremely trying when the video for one or both of you constantly freezes. When you’re already having an argument, it can be that much more painful and frustrating. I know for me sometimes too when trying to do even normal things like share screens to watch a movie together, if the internet keeps failing or he can’t hear the audio for some unknown reason, it only serves to drive home how sad it is that we can’t actually just watch it together from the same couch.
• No massages. Or really any physical contact. Unless you’re European. Us Americans, despite our reputation, not so huggy.
• No dates. Okay, so you can have Skype ‘dates,’ but I think we can all agree it’s not quite the same as being able to go on even simple dates, like walking through the park holding hands.
• You begin to forget what a kiss actually feels like.
• You get to hear people complain about not seeing their significant other for TWO WHOLE DAYS OMG. To your face.
• When you politely point out that it’s been over six months for you, you will hear variations of “Yeah, I could never do that,” or “yeah, but you’re used to it.” As far as my experience goes, you get numb to it, you don’t get used to it. And comments like that make the numbness disappear a bit, thanks.
• Time difference (if you’re more than a state away) means one of you, if not both of you, are never getting enough sleep, or are keeping very odd hours. This can cause tension in your other relationships.
• Unless you have a mutual online hobby (i.e. League of Legends), and even then, conversation can begin to feel stale.
• Going out into the real world means sacrificing time with your significant other.
• Spending time with your significant other means sacrificing time with others or even just going somewhere.
• Going out less so you can talk to your partner often means little sunlight, making you even more sad.
• If your partner is as far away as, oh I don’t know, say Japan, a lot of the other important people in your life have either never met them, or only for a very short amount of time. One of my best friends has never met Yuuki, and that’s pretty sad to me.
• It’s easy to feel like it will never get better. It’s very easy to feel alone.
• Echo, echo, echoooooo…………………………just kidding. Sort of.
• Independence. While your significant other may be able to do a great job of supporting you from afar, they aren’t going to be able to go with you to the doctor, they’re not going to be able to stop that creepy guy from staring at you, they’re not going to be able to hold you when you’re sad. You’ve got to do all that shit for yourself! And it makes you stronger.
• More time to yourself, and to do the things you want to do, rather than compromising.
• You can become a toned sexy beast and surprise them the next time you see them. Changes that are gradual for you are going to be shocking for them, especially the longer it is.
• You know your relationship is stronger than a lot of others if ‘they could never do that.’
• You can get actual, real mail. If you’re un/lucky enough to have a significant other in another country, this can mean access to food that is hard to find in the Middle of Nowhere.
• You can make actual, super cute packages to send.
• When you see each other for the first time in a long time, you get all the sensations of a first date again, no matter how long you’ve been dating. The butterflies don’t stop fluttering about for awhile, there will be awkward laughs, and you’ll remember again when you see that crooked smile how cute they are.
It’s easy to focus on the bad, especially when you’re at a stage in your life like mine – i.e. family and friends drifting away too, emotionally and physically for various reasons. But it’s not all horrible. The best thing about long distance relationships (besides when the long distance part ends, ahyuk) is the time and power you have to focus on you, and to better yourself.
So go out there, exercise, take an online class, read a book, climb a mountain, tame a dragon*. You, and probably your relationship as well, will be all the better for it.
* If you do tame a dragon, please tell me where and how. I’ve wanted one since I was around four years old, but for some reason I’ve never found one.