As more and more couples are forced to live apart, ELLE Canada rounds up expert relationship advice — and inspiring tales of triumph — about how to make your long-distance relationship work.
Long-distance relationship advice #2
DON’T: Communicate too much.
Although talking is a wonderful thing, chances are your partner doesn’t need 20 separate phone calls a day narrating everything from what you ate for breakfast to what you plan to make for dinner that night.
Extravagant daily details such as these can instantly turn your phone calls and texts into mundane conversation and kill any sense of romantic longing. Keep your lines of communication meaningful and something to look forward to. Quality always trumps quantity.
Long-distance relationship advice #3
DO: Create intimacy.
Maintaining emotional and sexual intimacy can be challenging when you’re not in the same city, let alone in the same bed. But, as Lacny suggests, talking openly about intimacy issues before they happen and before one person moves away can help reduce tension.
“It’s important for couples to not feel shameful about what is comfortable to them, whatever that may be,” she explains. “Some couples enjoy things over Skype or the phone, others have open relationships while apart, others rely on masturbation or send little care packages.” Whatever you need to do to keep intimacy alive in your relationship, Lacny advises being open and honest with your partner.
But, as much as you may miss your partner, don’t let yourself be pressured into doing anything you don’t feel comfortable with. If phone sex isn’t your thing, don’t feel obligated to participate just because your partner wants to.
Instead, brainstorm creative ways you can both satisfy your needs such as planning an extra trip to see each other, reminiscing about favourite dates or writing saucy emails to one another.
Long-distance relationship advice #4
DO: Set boundaries.
Being apart can create a natural anxiety, especially when it comes to dealing with the opposite sex, such as a new co-worker, neighbour or friend.
“Have discussions about boundaries before the long distance relationship starts,” Lacny recommends. “Keep your partner in the loop if you’re going out with a friend or friends of the opposite sex. It will help maintain your trust.”
More dos and dont's of maintaining a LDR on the next page...