Can Your Long Distance Relationship Survive The Miles Between You?

So, you’ve decided to try your hand at having a long distance relationship. Maybe you’ve just made a move cross-country, or your SO has gone abroad to pursue that dream job overseas. Whatever the circumstances, you don’t want to give up on your relationship just yet; but, you’re starting to feel that thing’s aren’t necessarily going the way you planned. There’s been some distance between the two of you, and I don’t mean the 4,000 miles of open sea and foreign lands. Here are 9 signs that your relationship probably won’t survive the space between you.

  1. Your Skype sessions are filled with silence. The two of you find yourselves sitting on the phone or on Skype for what feels like hours with absolutely nothing to talk about. Talking to your SO has started to feel like a chore instead of something you want to do. You feel obligated to say something, but it’s like pulling teeth to get the same in return.
  2. One of you sucks at technology. Even if you may be an expert at always texting twice a day, your partner may not be so great at it. He’s always responding with “k” or “nite” or some other variant of one-word phrases. While it may not mean they’re no longer interested in you, the lack of deep conversation can feel very discouraging.
  3. Most of your interaction is/was physical. Before the distance, you communicated mainly with nonverbal body language: spending lots of time cuddling, making out, and of course having sex. Suddenly having that taken away from you can feel quite jarring. One of you may not feel as connected without that physical component, and if you’re missing it that badly, one of you may start to look for it somewhere else.
  4. You don’t like the same things. It’s easy to pass the time when you’re together, distracting yourself with mindless activities. But in a long-distance relationship, both of you have to put in the time to talk and to find activities to share with each other. If one or both of you has no interest in hearing about what the other one likes to do for fun – or worse, could care less about participating in those activities with them – then someone will grow resentful, and you can pretty much hang it up.
  5. Jealousy runs rampant. Your S.O. can’t go out for a night on the town without you getting upset, or your friends start referring to you as “that girl who’s always on Skype because her boyfriend won’t let her do anything else.” Whether we’re upset that our partner’s friends get to see them when we can’t or they’re worried that we’re getting a little too close to our guy friends, jealousy spells disaster for any relationship, but especially ones that are long distance.
  6. You hate being alone. It’s like being single without all the perks of being single – you can’t date around, have random hookups, or spend all night out with the girls because you’re on Skype. But it’s also like having a relationship without all those benefits, too: you can’t sleep with your boyfriend or have an automatic cuddle partner during movie night. You’re stuck in this limbo of having someone while still feeling totally alone. One of you might start looking for other ways to fill the void, and that could be through someone else.
  7. One or both of you has trust issues. Your SO hates not knowing your every move and who you’re with and what you’re doing. Maybe you even start to restrict his or her activities so you won’t feel afraid. Having these irrational fears can make you act in irrational ways (like one of you cheating because you’re afraid the other must be cheating already), ones that will lead to the end of your relationship.
  8. You’re not willing to put in the work. You can skate by in a ho-hum relationship when you see the other person all the time. It’s so easy to just hang out, go on a date once a week, and talk here and there with the excuse that you’ll see each other soon. But now, you have to schedule time to talk, say no to friends begging for all-night drinking parties, or spend thousands of dollars on plane tickets for just a weekend getaway. And if either of you doesn’t want to do this, there’s no way you’re going to make it.
  9. There’s no end date in sight. Neither of you has any idea when this torturous long distance thing is going to come to an end. For now, it looks like it’ll just keep going on and on indefinitely. If there’s no plans to close the distance, then you’re not that serious about the relationship. It will devolve into a state of resentment and the two of you will break up anyway.

Long distance isn’t for everyone, and it’s not meant to be a permanent situation. If you care about your partner, put in the work while you’re apart, but make serious plans to move to the same city, either in the next few months or the next few years. Whatever the case, put an expiration date on the distance. If you can’t see yourself doing this, then you might as well end it now.