Whether they’re a few towns over or across the world, long-distance relationships can pose some unique challenges. While they’re not for everyone, these relationships can often be successful–so long as both parties make an effort.
Long-distance relationships are becoming more common in the modern world, so it’s more important than ever to know how to navigate them. Here’s how you can keep your relationship healthy and strong, no matter where you are in the world.
Types of Long-Distance Relationships
There are two types of long-distance relationships. The most common type consists of people who initially met in person but are temporarily in different parts of the world.
The second kind of long-distance relationship is between people who’ve met online but have yet to do so in person. A relationship like this can be a bit riskier than the first type, but it can still work. Just take plenty of precautions, and when you do eventually meet up with them in person, don’t go alone.
No matter which type of long-distance relationship you’re in, it is 100% possible to make it work.
Starting a Long-Distance Relationship
If you’re hoping to start a long-distance relationship, it’s now easier than ever. Dating apps and social media are the keys to finding like-minded people from around the world.
Before starting a long-distance relationship, keep in mind that there are unique hardships that will come with it. They will require a lot more trust than a traditional relationship, so prepare to find someone you can put your trust in.
Also, know how to look out for red flags. Do reverse image searches of the people you’re speaking to; this can help ensure they’re not using stock images or stolen photos. And if they start asking you for money early on in the relationship, it could be a sign that they have bad intentions.
In general, if something is a red flag in an in-person relationship, then it’ll be a red flag in an online relationship, too.
Long-Distance Relationships Tips – How to Make Them Work
If you’re already in a long-distance relationship, you must strengthen the love and trust between you and your partner. Here are a few tips for keeping your long-distance relationship as healthy as can be.
Video Chat When Possible
When you can’t see your loved one in person, a video chat can be the next best thing. Hearing their voice and seeing their face can help your relationship feel more genuine. Facebook, Discord, and Zoom are just a few popular apps people can use for video chatting.
Trust is important in any relationship, but it’s even more so in a long-distance relationship. Clear communication and honesty are the keys to maintaining a sense of trust in your partner.
This is another reason why video chatting is so crucial. It’s often easier to read someone’s intentions when you’re speaking face to face, rather than just over text.
That sense of trust goes both ways–make sure you’re a trustworthy partner as well. Always be honest and keep your promises, and if you expect something from your partner, you should do the same in return.
Send Each Other Gifts
Tangible gifts are a great way to make your long-distance relationship feel more genuine. Something small like a card or a handwritten letter in the mail can go a long way.
Or if you have a little extra money on hand, you can also send fancier gifts like chocolate and flowers. There are a lot of websites where you can buy romantic gifts online and ship them directly to your partner’s home. Consider doing something like this when Valentine’s Day comes around.
Play Online Games Together
Even if you’re not a big gamer, online games are one of the best ways to spend quality time with your loved one from afar. There are plenty of multiplayer games on Nintendo Switch, Steam, and other platforms where you can team up with or play against loved ones.
Or, if you’re more into word games, there are even websites where you can play games like Scrabble online.
Plan for the Future
What does your future look like with your partner? It’s important to discuss this with them often. Make plans to meet up in person, whether for the first time or the hundredth time.
When you and your loved one have a clear image of what your future looks like, your relationship will be much more successful in the long run.
Regardless of whether you initially met your partner in person or online, there are plenty of steps you can take to ensure that it works out.
As with any other type of relationship, though, that effort must be mutual. Establishing a sense of trust and commitment is the key to a successful long-distance relationship.
Ranya Al-Huthaili is an American entrepreneur in St. Paul, Minnesota. Born in Saudi Arabia, Ranya shares insight about relationships and creating a positive support system.