The PERFECT Long Distance Relationship – How To Make It Work

The PERFECT Long Distance Relationship – How To Make It Work

Okay so I have to start off by being straight up and honest with you: long distance relationships are not easy. In fact, they are extremely difficult. Perfectly healthy, amazing and happy relationships fall apart because of the distance. They’re not meant to be easy… if they were, no one would be looking up advice and everyone would be in a long distance relationship all the time forever.

That’s not to say that long distance relationships are impossible either. What they really take is commitment, communication, and consistency. If you can follow these few simple steps, you can make your long distance relationship work, and work well.

1. Keep Things As Normal As Possible

  • If you want this long distance relationship to work out, it has to feel normal. When you get in contact with each other, it shouldn’t be time you’re “taking out of your day”, it should be a natural habit that happens every day without even thinking about it (1).

    And since you won’t be with your partner physically, it’s super important to stay in contact consistently, so that you can keep your emotional connection alive and strong.

    Even if some days all you have with each other is some quick checkup texts, it’s way better than nothing. Your goal is to never have a day go by when you don’t talk to each other. And remember – don’t freak out if he doesn’t text you back right away!

    A great way to make this easy is to figure out which kind of communication you both like to use. Is he a skype person, or does he like talking on the phone? Do you like video chatting, or writing emails to each other? Experiment and figure out what you like best.

    Second, figure out what your schedules are like, and work around them. Find a time that works for both of you, where neither of you feels rushed or pressured so that you can just enjoy talking to each other. That way, you’ll always be able to make time for each other, and you’ll never feel like he’s pulling away.

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  • Don’t forget to talk about the little things! A lot of the time, the little things are what relationships are really made of.

    If you go into a long distance relationship expecting every conversation you have to be deep, meaningful, and soul-satisfying, you’re going to be disappointed – and it’s going to put your relationship in jeopardy (2).

    Instead, let yourself talk about whatever little things you’ve been thinking about during the day! What you got at the grocery store, what you’ve been doing with your friends, even what you got done around the house. This stuff is the foundation of a strong relationship, don’t forget it!

More: 9 Things People Who Are Great In Relationships Have In Common

  • Make time for lots of visits! As good as lots of communication is, it’s not a replacement for spending actual real time with him in person. Take every opportunity you have to see each other in person (3).

    As soon as one visit ends, you two should be planning the next time you can see each other. Remember – there’s no replacement for physical presence and contact, and those are two massively important parts of a relationship.

  • Make some effort to keep your interest in each other alive. Just because your partner is halfway across the country (or halfway across the world!) doesn’t mean that you can stop paying attention and learning about them. If you stay interested in each other, your relationship can last forever.

    Get to know his hobbies and what he likes to do when he’s got down time and he’s not with you, and then engage him about them. It will keep your connection strong.

  • Whatever you do – don’t idealize your partner and think of him as the greatest person you’ve ever had the good fortune to date. It’s true that time apart makes people more fond of one other, but it dangerous to allow yourself to think that your partner is perfect… because you might be extremely disappointed when you see each other in person again.

    Remember, the perfect antidote for this is regular, open communication with each other about the minutia of your daily lives. That will help you remember who he IS, not who you’re idealizing him to be.

  • Make sure to support him and make sure he knows that he’s responsible for supporting you. If something tragic or awful happens in his life, you should be on the first plane/train/automobile there to be there for him – just like he should do the same thing for you.

    Trying to deal with something awful alone can make a person feel isolated and weak, so don’t put him in that situation. Instead, prove to him that you care about him and want to support him by being there when he really needs you.

See Also: 20 Secrets Behind Relationships That Last Forever

  • Remember, long distance relationships are about trust . He needs to be able to trust you, just like you need to be able to trust him. Don’t let yourself get into situations where you might feel some temptation, and if you do mess up and do something you shouldn’t – tell him right away.

    Like, let’s say you went out with some friends and you wound up at a bar. If you hid that from your partner for fear that he’d be jealous, you’re undermining your relationship. However, if you’re honest with him and tell him where you were, you’re strengthening your relationship and your trust.

2. Make Sure To Do Things Together!

  • One of the best ways to stay close in a long distance relationship is to have an activity that you both do together while you’re apart. You could start up a blog with him and write entries to each other, or write stories or poems back and forth.

    One great way to stay connected with him is to watch a TV show together, while you’re separate. Pick something on Netflix so that you can do it whenever you have time, then call each other up and start the episode at the same time.

  • Along that same vein, try to do things at the same time as each other. If you create a ritual around cooking dinner at the same time, you’re going to feel a lot more connected than if you just call every other day or so.

    It will feel almost like you’re in the same kitchen, and you’d be preserving a ritual that has kept people feeling close and intimate with each other for centuries.

  • If you want to take a more active approach, try picking up a new hobby or project and learning how to do it together. You could both decide to learn how to play chess and play against each other, or try learning a new language, or even try to learn how to knit together!

    Whatever it is, the most important thing is that you’re doing it together, and you do it consistently. You’ll definitely have something to talk about when you see each other in person!

  • Don’t forget to put in the effort to making each other feel special.

    Just because you’re apart doesn’t mean that you’ve lost your need for intimacy and self-esteem, so take every opportunity to make him feel good and encourage him to do the same for you.

    You could write each other love letters, write poems in emails to each other, send flowers, or even send each other little gifts for no reason. Whatever it is – the most important thing is that thought goes into it, and that you make each other feel special.

3. Make Sure To Set Boundaries And Have Good Expectations

  • Before your long distance relationship even begins, you have to make sure you’re on the same page. What kind of relationship are you in? Are you expecting each other to be faithful?

    Just as important – you both should have an idea when the “long distance” part of the relationship is going to be over. Ask him whether he’ll ever be willing to move to see you – and ask yourself whether you’d be willing to move to him.

They’re difficult questions, but they’ll save you pain in the long run.

  • Don’t keep your doubts bottled up – talk through them with him! Chances are, he’s feeling the same way, and any doubts or fears you have aren’t going to help the relationship if you’re keeping them inside.

    Instead, allow this to be a way that you both make your relationship stronger, by talking through your uncertainties together. The most important thing is that you be honest with each other, so you both know what to be careful of and you know how to treat each other to keep each other happy.

  • Remember, one of the most important things to do is stay positive ! Long distance relationships are hard enough – and going into them with a negative attitude is going to sink your chances before you’ve even had a chance.

    Instead, make sure to focus on the things that are good about being in a long distance relationship with each other. You’ll have a chance to develop as people on your own. Plus, you’ll get a lot better at communicating with each other because you won’t be able to rely on being in the same room to solve misunderstandings.

  • Keep your expectations reasonable. If you expect to go into a long distance relationship where everything just works, and you never have misunderstandings, and you don’t have to talk to each other that much or put in that much effort, you’re going to have a rude awakening – and it’s going to have harsh consequences for your relationship.

    Instead, keep an open mind and make sure to roll with the punches. If something gets messed up or someone makes a mistake – it’s not the end of the world. Remember, keeping your relationship strong is up to both of you, and you both have to put in the effort to make it work. If you can both do that, you’ll be fine!

Click here to take our quick (and shockingly accurate) “Are You Meant To Be Together” Quiz right now and find out if you’re really meant to be together forever…

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55 comments… add one
  • thando March 12, 2017, 1:36 pm

    Yoo being separate with ur partner it so difficult I knw cz I’m in long relationship need ppl dat believe each other and lv truely and being have hopes ,honest and expect yaah other time it difficult when u mic him or her deeply

  • Bunnie October 21, 2016, 3:48 am

    My bf and I are truly in love. We both respect each other and share everything openly. We are totally honest with each other. The other day we watched a tv show together over the telephone. Our love is real and strong. We text and talk all the time. When we see each other we send every every moment together. We will be sanctify our love one day by marrying in and through the eyes of The Lord. God has brought us together and I will honor and cherish my boyfriend forever✝❤️

  • Kristin Stoner October 17, 2016, 10:15 am

    I am going through a long distance relationship and it is very hard. My boyfriend is at basic training and it is killing me to death. It is hard not to talk to him when you need him. My boyfriend is the only person I can talk to about anything. I trust my boyfriend with my heart cause I know he is not going to do anything to break it. It is very tough but you have to have the strength to do it.

  • Celestina Dimpho October 2, 2016, 3:06 pm

    long distance isn’t a difficult for me. I have been in for year. I and my partner we trust each other,we communicate every day..wherever I go,my partner has to know.

  • Nana Akua Merahael August 29, 2016, 6:59 pm

    Long distance relationship is not easy, but if the two of are determine to reach the sky, you will surely get there on time.

  • Carol Bisbee January 23, 2016, 8:04 am

    Not fun at all, but I was in a situation that required this type of relationship and it was the hardest thing I ever had to do.

  • Alicia Wilson` January 22, 2016, 7:16 am

    I found that even if you can only get together a couple of times per month it is well worth the feelings you have for a person you cannot see each day.

    • Thelma Rhymer January 23, 2016, 8:14 am

      That is a pretty good tip. sometimes you just cannot get your schedules to work out and that is when things get a little edgy.

  • Linda Dunbar January 20, 2016, 2:17 pm

    I really never had one of these, mostly because I just think they will not work. My bf now is looking to move for his job and we might have to deal with it.

  • Nedra Martinez January 19, 2016, 6:33 pm

    Long distance is such a hard thing to get right. I avoid them.

    • Arlene Gonzalez January 20, 2016, 3:35 pm

      You shouldn’t avoid them because they are “hard to get right”. You should accept that challenge.

  • Annie Richardson January 18, 2016, 2:40 pm

    I had a long distance relationship last for almost 4 years one time. When we were finally ready to re-unite on more of a full time basis, things seemed to fizzle out real fast.

  • Ramona Sears January 15, 2016, 8:20 pm

    The expectations are what can really hurt the long distance thing. Both of you have to be on the same page for it to work.

  • Barbara Miller January 14, 2016, 9:01 pm

    Long distance relationships are hard to manage. If you can get through one without a major break up, you are better than most people I would reckon.

    • Debra Martinez January 18, 2016, 2:51 pm

      I agree. I have avoided a couple of them in my day and it has been well worth it!

  • Jessica Dillard January 13, 2016, 11:15 am

    I would be shocked if you could find a single person out there that will tell you it is going to be easy.

  • Helena Etheredge January 12, 2016, 5:44 pm

    Support is huge and getting into the other person’s hobby can be a big part of that.

    • Jesse Hardy January 15, 2016, 8:29 pm

      Support is a major player in many things related to relationships.

  • Hiedi Chamberlain January 11, 2016, 9:35 pm

    In today’s world, you can do so much online together that it might seem like you are not really apart in a long distance relationship.

    • Charla Tingley January 19, 2016, 6:41 pm

      That is a great point. I never really thought about it that way and might have just said “forget it” to long distance relationships before reading your comment.

  • Iris Donaldson January 8, 2016, 1:21 pm

    I tried to do this one time while I was in college. Not to mention that it was the hardest thing I ever done, I spent a lot more money just trying to be near my b/f all the time.

    • Juanita Blackwell January 12, 2016, 5:54 pm

      During your college years, it would be the hardest to be away from someone that you love. There is so much stress that you would need someone else there to help you with.

    • Kendra Orear January 13, 2016, 11:26 am

      I could not imagine doing this in college. That would not have worked for me at all.

  • Kimberly Ramos January 7, 2016, 10:21 pm

    How do you know what is “normal” when you are dating someone that lives a long distance away?

    • Diane Zimmerman January 8, 2016, 1:31 pm

      Well, phone calls help. Visiting once a week with each other and just keeping tabs on each other.

  • Clifford Zimmerman September 17, 2015, 9:58 pm

    Before my wife and I were married, we were 1,000 miles apart for 4 years of college. We visited each other of course and it was NOT an easy task, but we made it through and I can say that we followed many of the tips here!

    • Barbara Egerton January 22, 2016, 7:28 am

      Wow, I cannot believe that worked out for you. I was in a similar situation and that did not last long at all for me. I wish I would have been able to get advice like this back then.

  • Mary Lopez September 17, 2015, 9:49 pm

    Long distance relationships should be banned. I have never had one work and that does suck. I am not even going to consider another even with the tips you have here.

  • Sharon Gathers September 16, 2015, 12:27 pm

    I like the tips. I would be willing to try something like this with the right person!

    • Rosetta Roark January 11, 2016, 9:45 pm

      These are very good tips. If you like these you should check out the rest of the blog.

  • Charity Wyatt September 16, 2015, 12:19 pm

    I have been in a long distance relationship before. At first my b/f didn’t think we could do it, but it lasted about 2 years. The distance wasn’t horrible, but it was trying for us. We broke up once we got to living in the same city again. Weird, huh?

  • Patricia Poulsen September 15, 2015, 10:17 am

    No such thing as a perfect long distance relationship. These are good tips, but without proper execution from BOTH parties, it will not work.

    • Angela Graham January 7, 2016, 10:31 pm

      That is true. They take hard work and they are not going to last if you are not willing to put the time into one.

  • Carolyn Terry September 15, 2015, 10:08 am

    I tried this when my b/f and I went to different colleges. It worked out for a little while, but we eventually grew apart and decided that was it.

  • Regina McDonald September 14, 2015, 11:32 am

    I know how to make them work………avoid them like the plague. It is not easy and just adds stress that does not need to be there.

  • Lenora Hewitt September 14, 2015, 11:21 am

    Setting what boundaries there are in a relationship like this is one thing. You can expect a lot, but you have to be realistic as well. It’s a tough game to play, but you never know how the outcome will be.

    • Georgia German January 14, 2016, 9:10 pm

      The keyword here is realistic.

  • Marsha Guiterrez September 11, 2015, 6:12 pm

    Do you want a relationship to work from another state? Just make sure you see eachother a couple of times per month, that should do it!

  • Cheryl Long September 11, 2015, 6:00 pm

    I think if you have a plan for this relationship, then you are in good hands. But you have to stick to the plan.

  • Michelle Rodas September 11, 2015, 11:16 am

    I think it is a gamble, regardless of how you look at it. I agree with some of the things that are listed here, but it takes a buy-in from both sides as well!

  • Minnie Madsen September 9, 2015, 12:45 pm

    I would give it a go if I was in a relationship that was older than a couple years and then there was a need to be apart for a little while. Other than that, I am sure it would not work out as well as many would hope.

  • Dawn Venable September 9, 2015, 12:35 pm

    The only reason that couples try and make it work is that think there is a chance it will. There is NO chance. Just end it right away and save yourself the problems.

  • Lynn Huggins September 8, 2015, 8:16 am

    I might be part of a small group, but when I have been faced with a long distance relationship, I tend to just end it. I always felt it was better than putting people through the hardship.

  • Lynn Emerson September 7, 2015, 9:36 am

    If you can make a long distance relationship work until you meet up again some day, you are a lot stronger than I could ever be. I just do not trust others, or myself in that case.

  • Joanne Herbert September 7, 2015, 9:03 am

    Even thought it might not be easy, doing things together during a long distance relationship is very important to keeping things alive and well.

  • Jane Blow September 4, 2015, 8:51 am

    I have never had success with these. Even as I read through the tips, which seem like they would work, I cannot get myself to go into that situation again.

    • Heather Reade September 8, 2015, 8:29 am

      I agree with you. It is not something that I would be good at.

  • Barbara Beck September 4, 2015, 8:38 am

    I like the idea of sending letters to each other. That is a sweet gesture and I think it would make my boyfriend feel special.

  • Lena Johnson September 3, 2015, 8:55 am

    This is tough. Depending on the actual distance and whether or not you are both willing to do some traveling, it can work, but it is so much pressure.

  • Christi Higgins September 3, 2015, 8:44 am

    For something like this, there is so much trust that is needed on both ends. This is a true, relationship test.

    • Mandy Lundy September 11, 2015, 4:23 pm

      If your relationship has to be tested, there are other issues!

  • Laura Novak September 2, 2015, 9:36 am

    I stay away from a long distance relationship any time that I can. They are just not worth it to either person involved in my opinion.

  • Wanda Cano September 2, 2015, 9:24 am

    With a long distance relationship you have to be realistic as well. There are things that are just not going to work out like “date night” each week. But with the right planning you can really make it work.

  • Debra McDonald September 1, 2015, 10:32 am

    Being in a relationship is hard enough the way it is. In order to make one work, there is plenty of work that needs to be done. With that being said, BOTH parties have to work even harder during a long distance relationship or there is no way it will work.

  • Erika Colbert September 1, 2015, 9:58 am

    I have been in a long distance relationship and it is not easy. Besides the good tips you have here, you still have to make time for each other. Such a tough test for you and your partner.

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