With going away to school comes one of the staples of college life: long-distance relationships. Many people continue dating their high school boy- or girlfriends when they enter college (and many of these relationships are very successful and long-lasting).
While it can be tough to maintain a successful relationship when you’re far away from your significant other, it’s definitely possible.
The first key to making long-distance relationships work is commitment. Both members of the relationship have to be fully committed to making it work. This seems obvious, but it’s something that you’ll need to think and talk about quite a bit.
If both people aren’t ready to deal with the difficulties of a long-distance relationship, it can place a great added strain on the relationship. It’s important to address this issue before leaving for college, so make sure to bring it up early.
Probably the most obvious component of a successful long-distance relationship is communication. Because you can’t see each other very often, it’s important to stay in close communication—many couples find that talking on the phone every day keeps them close.
Not all couples talk every day, but the successful ones communicate very often, via phone, email, text messaging, instant messaging, or another method of communication.
Talk to each other like you would if you were together; talk about the things that happened that day, what you’re looking forward to in the coming weeks, the tough tests that you’re getting ready for, the latest dorm gossip, the school’s sports team, anything and everything that you would talk about in a normal face-to-face conversation.
Making Time for Each Other
While close communication is important, it won’t cut it forever—make sure to see each other when you can.
- If you’re across the state, this might mean spending weekends together (if you can drive to your boy- or girlfriend’s school).
- If you’re across the country, you may be limited to holidays and summer vacation.
But no matter your situation, make sure to take any opportunity (within reason, of course) to spend time together. It’ll help strengthen your relationship and give you something to look forward to.
Making a relationship over a great distance work can be a difficult, but very rewarding, proposition. It takes a great deal of commitment, patience, and forgiveness.
Be forgiving, because someday, your significant other will forget to call, not check her or his email, or have another plan for the weekend that you were hoping to come over. These things happen—but if you can just roll with it and not stress about it, you’ll be in much better shape. It can be tough, but with some perseverance, you’ll make it through. It’s definitely been done before!