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Making Long-Distance Relationships Work

They say absence makes the heart grow fonder, but long-distance relationships are hard, and the hardest part isn’t missing your boo, it’s when you stop missing them and start to grow apart. Whether it’s regular travel for work, or you actually live and work in different cities or countries, you can still make it work. Here’s how to stay close to your partner even when you’re miles apart.

It’s easy to just get on with life, but if you don’t talk when you’re apart, you won’t talk when you’re together, or you will, but only about the serious stuff. Call or message after work, not just when you have to. Ask your partner how their day was, talk about the little things – the kind of conversation most couples have over dinner or before they turn out the lights.

Make an effort

Even if you’re taking a three-hour train ride every other weekend (and your partner in between) to see each other, if you value the relationship, it’s worth it. Making an effort to see your partner whenever you can will remind you why you’re together and show them how much you care. Sometimes it’s not so easy, if they’re in another country, or it’s not financially viable.


It might make you feel like a teenager, but maybe that’s a good thing. Just because you can’t be together physically, doesn’t mean you can’t keep things fresh. A naughty picture here and there will really spice things up, just make sure you both keep your phones locked in case colleagues or kids decide to go snooping. If you’re up for it, make sure you’ve both got some privacy and set up a Skype call. It’ll probably be awkward at first, so take things slow, no need to dive right in.

The costs

Unfortunately, finances are a factor, but you can keep costs pretty low. If you decide to travel to see your partner, opt for bus or train rather than flying, often time spent at the airport cancels out the time you save by flying. Busses and trains will also be a lot cheaper. If you do need to fly, limit it to special occasions or long weekends so you aren’t flying for just a day or two.

Regular phone calls to your partner will also add up, but you still need to hear each other’s voices once in a while. You can Skype call if you both have decent internet access, but the quality may not always be great. If your babe is overseas, look at getting a prepaid international calling plan, like EnjoyPrepaid. You’ll pay a lot less than typical international rates and you can use it on your cell or landline.

Couples with kids

One of the hardest long-distance relationships to maintain is when your partner isn’t there and you have kids. Trying to work around both of your schedules, and the kids, makes it incredibly difficult to find time to chat. If you can squeeze in half an hour once the kids are in bed, do. Otherwise, look at adjusting your work day a couple times a week so your lunch breaks coincide, and you can call then.

As the parent who’s away from the kids, whether it’s mom or dad, you can seriously feel undervalued as a parent. Make sure whoever sees the kids least gets the most time with them when they’re there. Don’t play good-cop-bad-cop, but make sure the time is fun and fulfilling.

Given how many relationships fail, even when couples live together, if you can make a long-distance relationship work, you’re already winning.