My boyfriend and I are almost on our first year together. It only sucks that he’s unable to fly back home due to work. It’s been two months and counting since I’ve been in his arms, and I do greatly miss being wrapped around him in my sleep.
Thinking about it, we spend most of our time apart. I am living and working in UAE, while he spends most of his time traveling for business abroad in countries where he’s assigned to. We’re never in the same time zones but even so, our relationship still feels like the most intimate I’ve had in my life.
He inspired me to write this piece today, in celebration of how we survive a long-distance relationship. Here’s a couple of things that worked for us:
Firstly, is that we try to communicate everyday as much as our schedules permit. He’s undeniably a very busy man and yet, I’m quite thankful that he finds the time to text me when he can. I believe it would be especially difficult to do long-distance if you’re the type to prefer talking face-to-face. Not that we don’t, but having the tolerance and persistence to virtually communicate almost 90% of the time is still a feat on its own. And for some reason, we never run out of things to talk about — even if it is something light or silly. We’ve gone a long way when it comes to our communication skills, and we just keep getting better at it.
Secondly, we almost never fight. I’ve said it before, but we don’t really have anything to fight about, quite literally. And even if we have a spat out of the blue, we do make up almost instantly. We don’t dwell on past problems either, which is something that I’ve learned to appreciate from my past relationships where we used to keep tabs on each other. With him, I focus more on my, his and our happiness than creating something to fight about.
Third is that we are always there for each other, no matter what. That sounds very cheesy, but it is true. A problem I used to have with long distance relationships is that I seem to often feel alone, especially when I have good news to celebrate or bad news that needs comfort with. I never felt that with him. He is always there for me, through thick and thin. And he’s always supportive of whatever I set to do, and been my rock all this time. I love how he opens my mind to so many new things and how he helps me become a better person everyday. Even if we are apart, it doesn’t feel much like we are.
Fourth, is that he taught me the power of choice. My mom said something quite strange to me one time about my boyfriend, which is: “It’s a good thing that your focus is only on him, despite him being away all the time.” It was weird to me that people seem to expect that just because my partner is away, I have all the reasons to look for another one. I know I could and he knows it too, but it’s a matter of choice. I know I have all the freedom to be with someone else or to cheat on his behind if I actually wanted to but I value my relationship with him more than any other potential love interest there could be. That, and I respect him tremendously.
Fifth, is that we give each other space when necessary. Like I said, he’s quite a busy man so as a girlfriend, I try my best to give him the time and space he needs because I do not want to stress him out even further. There are times when I’m needing a bit more attention but I understand when he doesn’t have the time to coddle me which I respect as much as I can. To be fair though, boundaries are very important when it comes to relationships in general, not just in LDRs.
Sixth is that we focus on growth individually, and together. Being that he is older than me, I tend to lean on him most times as a mentor. He helps me develop my character in a lot of ways, and I pay back by being supportive of him in his work. He knows which buttons to push to motivate me into doing things, without becoming controlling or overbearing. We’ve also slowly started to talk about our relationship on long-term basis like probably moving somewhere where we can be a little bit more together. I believe it is also vital in a long-distance relationship to see it having a future because that’s what moves the relationship even further.
Lastly, we’ve not seen each other for a while now but our relationship has not gone cold. Lots of people I know tease me often about our status because I tend to be lowkey in general. Yes, we’re still together and he’s still my boyfriend. We’re mostly apart and yet strangely enough, our relationship just keeps getting stronger; our flame has not lost its strength. Our chemistry is something that I haven’t experienced with anyone else, and we both know it’s undeniable. We’re just as excited about each other as we had when we first met.
How about you? What are your relationship tips for doing long-distance arrangement?