Long distance relationships are challenging for most of us. There are a lot of lonely times, those days you just want to meet each other no matter what, and sometimes even those dark times when you feel like breaking up would be better for both of you. Depending on the distance, you might not be able to meet in months – or even years! Humans need someone beside them – we yearn for that physiologically. Hugging another person is known to stimulate dopamine and serotonin flows in our brain so it’s no wonder it feels so good to hug your loved ones.
So, does this lonely form of relationship have any merits then? Yes, it does. If you manage to build a LDR with mutual trust and mutually shared relationship goals (refer to this post for tips), the pros of LDR might just exceed the cons.
1. You have more time for your friends
If you have ever had a friend who is going steady with someone while you were a single, you must know how it feels when your friend is always on dates and doesn’t have time for you. For me, the worst things is when my friend invites me to go somewhere with her and her boyfriend. Double dates are fine but being the third wheel in a date… No thank you. In a long distance relationship, there might be times when you are that third wheel but at least you can avoid doing that to your friends yourself.
By the way, the pic in the right has a sign with the text “don’t throw away your friends”. It’s originally meant for people who are planning to leave their cats in the park but why not to apply it for people as well?
2. You have time to “polish” yourself
Here in Japan, we call this word called jibunmigaki which can be directly translated as “polishing yourself”. What it means is to do your best to become an even better version of yourself. In a slightly patriotic country like Japan, for girls, this often means learning how to cook better, learning how to clean better or just doing some effort on your looks. Comparatively for men, this could mean things like body building or working hard to get a raise in work. However, this can also mean things like studying or working on your weak points – whatever they are. In Japanese articles, this “self-polishing” is often presented as something you’re doing for the opposite sex but if you ask me, it can also be something you do for yourself. One of the most important things I sometimes do is to trying to learn to actually appreciate myself.
3. You and your partner won’t feel as restricted
This applies only to healthy relationship with mutual trust though. If your partner is feeling unsure of your relationship and keeps on asking you questions about your plans, about the friends you’re going out with and gets angry at you if you, for example, come home later than you told him you would, you probably will feel restricted (and so will your partner if you do the same). However, in a healthy relationship, LDR should give you a bit more freedom than you would have in a “normal” relationship. This does not mean you can go out with other people and flirt with strangers in Tinder though.
4. You might actually get to know your partner better
This might sound strange but you might actually get to know your partner better if you are in LDR than you would in a other kind of relationship. If you don’t meet each other, you will have a lot of time to discuss each others’ interests and hobbies. In a beginning of my LDR, I actually even made my partner questions about his personality and asked things like “what would you do in a situation x” – since I’m not able to see and observe his actions. I also was asked things about the way I spend my ordinary days. We always tell each other what time we woke up, what we ate that day and how we feel that day. if you’re together, your partner might realize that you have a bad day without you saying it aloud. However, in LDR you are forced to talk about these kind of things too which will help you get more clear information on each other – and also helps minimize misunderstandings.
5. You can concentrate on working or studying
Since you have a lot time for yourself, you can concentrate on your career and/or studies. I’m currently attending an University and I have times when I’m really busy studying and these times, I actually appreciate the fact that I’m in long distance relationship. I can use 5 hours studying, then take one-hour break to Skype with my boyfriend, and after that, continue studying in that same spot. Also, if I wanted to go for a walk, I can take my iPhone with Skype installed with me, put on my earphones and have a conversation with my LDR partner while walking (I currently use these earphones by Phaiser, they’re perfect for skyping while walking or doing pretty much anything + there’s a nice offer in Amazon on them so you should check it out). I don’t have to do any specific plans with my bf or arrange meet-ups or anything – I can speak with him anywhere. Of course you can call your partner even if you weren’t in LDR but for those of us who are in LDR, calling being the main way of communication, it might just feel a bit more special.
6. You might confess your feeling to each other more often and more clearly
I have noticed that whenever I’m together with my love, I say a lot less cheesy things than I do when we email each other or chat in Skype. Somehow, it just feels more necessary to say “I love you” whenever we Skype. When you’re together, you might be busy doing something else or thinking something else and it might feel weird to just blurt out a love confession in the middle of a conversation – it’s great if you can do this though.
7. You can have a serious relationship
Of course this is possible in other kind of relationships as well but simply being in LDR with someone already shows a great amount of commitment. In LDR, the chances of the other party being in the relationship just for benefits is a lot lower than in the relationships where you can meet (and cuddle) more often. Also, since you can’t meet each other often, you have a good reason to ask for commitment and talk about your future together. You also have good time to think about your relationship – both in good or bad.
8. The feeling of “new” lasts longer
This might sound a bit harsh but that’s what reality is, and in reality, many relationships end immediately after the feeling of “new” has brushed off. There are people who just get bored soon. In long distance relationship, this feeling will last longer since you can’t meet each other as often and can’t do things you probably would like to do with your partner. Depending how often you can meet, even after years, you might discover completely new things about your partner.
9. You won’t take each other for granted
I really, genuinely wish that this would not happen in any relationship ever but unfortunately, this does happen a lot. If you don’t meet often, it will feel a lot more special to actually meet. Having a date every other date could even start feeling like a unavoidable responsibility, obligation – even though it should be something that makes you incredibly happy. If you are in an LDR, the odds of your partner starting to feel like your cat which will always be with you no matter what happens (that’s mostly because you give it food and a shelter though) are a lot smaller.
10. You will be unbelievably happy when you finally meet.
I think anyone, in LDR or not, understand the reason for this. The happiness when you finally meet is just indescribable.