A lot of couples a scared of long-distance relationships. People believe that long-distance relationships are hard and that suffering is inevitable. But it’s true.
Long-distance relationships can be hard if you don’t know how to handle them. Some couples try to manage them the same way as a regular relationship. But this doesn’t work. Romantic relationships need physical closeness and aren’t meant to last a long time.
Long-distance relationships aren’t innately hard or scary. People make them hard by misunderstanding what they are. If you try to maintain your relationship long-distance long-term, it’ll get harder with time.
With enough commitment and attachment, you can make it last a long time. But the longer it lasts, the harder it’ll get. At some point, all you might feel is sadness and frustration. And you’ll need to ask yourself if this is what you want your relationship to be like.
There are many situations where circumstances may seem complicated. Often people find themselves stuck in a relationship where they aren’t happy but which they feel they cannot end for some reason.
In this article, we’ll talk about what long-distance relationships are, common reasons why they get hard, and what you can do to make them easier.
What are the long-distance relationships?
Long-distance relationships are commonly romantic relationships where a couple is separated by geographical distance. Some people start a long-distance relationship by meeting someone online. Others have an existing relationship but have to live apart for some time.
Romantic relationships in their nature involve physical closeness. When starting a long-distance relationship online, people work towards meeting, visiting, and if all goes well moving in together. Couples who are already in a relationship would be looking to reunite after a long-distance relationship has served its purpose.
In either of these situations, long-distance relationships can work very well. But they aren’t designed to last a long time. While you can have a long-distance friendship for many years, a romantic relationship needs physical intimacy. And after a few months without physical intimacy or with the lack of, your relationship stops being romantic.
Problems begin when couples continue a long-distance relationship for a long-time without seeing each other as much as they would like.
This leads to many issues and can be a waste of everyone’s time. That said, some couples might feel satisfied with occasional visits, so for them, long-distance relationships may work just fine. Whether or not this is healthy is a topic for a different article.
Reasons why long-distance relationships are hard
Reason number 1:
One of the main reasons is people misunderstand what a long-distance relationship really is. Some couples continue being in a long-distance relationship the same way they would a regular one.
Reason number 2:
The lack of physical closeness that comes with a long-distance relationship affects couples more than they think it would. Physical closeness is a fundamental part of a romantic relationship. Couples get into a relationship to be close to someone, to have some to hold, and to be next to. A romantic relationship without physical intimacy is friendship.
Reason number 3:
Couples in long-distance relationships don’t tend to discuss each other preferences about the means and the frequency of their communication. In a regular relationship, communication isn’t something couples think about too much. Everyone gets on with their day and then catch up at the end of it. In a long-distance relationship, couples try to compensate for the lack of physical closeness by talking and texting. But no amount of texting and talking can replace being close to each other. So the texts and the calls can sometimes become continuous. This creates another problem of not allowing each other personal space. It can quickly become suffocating and lead to more problems.
Reason number 4:
Overthinking something that you could talk about together can make your long-distance relationship much harder.
Hard parts of long-distance relationships
Starting a new long-distance relationship online isn’t very hard. There are plenty of online dating websites and apps. And it cost nothing to keep in touch and get to know someone over the internet. Dating sites have a lot of profiles but can use filters to narrow down the search to your preferences.
For a new relationship, the hardest part is to decide if you want to move in together. The hard thing in an existing relationship is to maintain an emotional connection without physical closeness. When you know what it’s like to be with someone, it’s harder to be away from them because you know what you are missing.
The distance may not make your relationship harder, but it will make it different.
Two hard things that couples face in a long-distance relationship is the lack of physical intimacy and distrust. Lack of physical intimacy can lead to cheating, and lack of clear communication can prompt jealousy. Cheating, jealousy, and distrust, in general, are outcomes of an unhealthy relationship. It’s better to prevent them before they happen by maintaining a degree of understanding via effective communication. Because once a person acts on their insecurities or desperation from unfulfilled needs, the relationship becomes a lot harder to fix.
Your long-distance relationship gets hard when you start having conflicting feelings. We all feel insecure at times. It’s normal to have doubts. But when the stress from doubts becomes your normal state of being. Constant stress can become anxiety and at that point, your relationship is no longer healthy with too many doubts and confusion.
The hardest part here is not being able to talk it over with your partner face to face to see if your doubts have reasons to be. Sometimes doubts aren’t based on anything specific and are products of insecurities.
The good news is that having strong communication with your partner allows you to address any doubts before they turn into bigger issues.
When long-distance relationships get hard?
Long-distance relationships get hard when they last too long or when there’s a communication breakdown. Being away from your partner for a short while can be good for a relationship. You get some time and space for yourself to reassess your personal life and look at your relationship from a different perspective.
If your relationship is healthy, after the time apart you’ll get back together and your relationship can be even stronger.
However, if your relationship has issues, the distance will make them more visible. If this happens, you can either work out the things that bother you, or you may decide to end your relationship altogether.
How do you make a long-distance relationship easier?
To make your long-distance relationship easier, you need to know what it made it hard. Have your feelings changed, or are you having issues related to the distance between you? If it’s your feelings, then consider having an honest and open conversation with your partner and maybe consider having a break.
If you are struggling with some aspects of being in a long-distance relationship like intimacy or communication, there’s a good chance you can work them out.
Maybe one of you wants to talk more than the other. You could agree on how often and how much you should talk that works for both of you. Some people need physical intimacy more than others. If this is the case, maybe you could find a way to visit each other more often or stay together for a few more days.
The key to making your long-distance relationship work is good communication. As long as each of you can express your feelings and preferences, there’s no need to hold back and overthink things.
It’s also important to hear each other’s feelings and see their point of view. This can help both of you understand each other better and give one another the emotional support to get through the rough patches.
In themselves, long-distance relationships are not hard. At least they aren’t much harder than any other regular relationship. In reality, they are just different from normal relationships in some ways.
If you are starting a long-distance relationship without understanding how the distance affects your relationship, it will be hard for you to manage your relationship successfully. In this article, we’ve covered common problems that couples face in a long-distance relationship and several ways how to prevent them.
A long-distance relationship can be hard, but you can get through it if you have a goal and an end date. To have a successful long-distance relationship, you should know what to expect from it.
If you need individual help, feel free to fill in this quiz and get a personalised response.
GETTING SOME HELP
I hope that this article answered some of your questions. If you are struggling and could do with more help, here is how you can get it:
- Join our Facebook PAGE for fresh ideas, quotes, and articles.
- Visit our Facebook GROUP and talk to others in the same situation. Our coaches are part of that group, so you will get professional advice too.
- Take this QUIZ to assess how healthy is your relationship and receive a personalised response from a relationship coach.
- If you still feel confused and overwhelmed and could do with individual help, BOOK your online session. You can discuss your situation with a relationship coach one2one or have a virtual appointment together with your partner.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are long-distance relationships hard?
In themselves, long-distance relationships are not hard.
At least they aren’t much harder than any other regular relationship.
In reality, they are just different from normal relationships in some ways. Read more
Are long-distance relationships stressful?
Long-distance relationships tend to get stressful if they last a long time. The longer your relationship has to be long-distance, the harder it is to maintain and the more stressful it becomes. Read more
What is the hardest thing about long-distance relationships?
Communication is the key to any relationship. In a regular relationship, there are ways around like ignoring the issue or making up instead of talking about things. But long-distance relationships don’t offer such a luxury. If something goes unsaid, you have a lot of alone time to overthink things and create issues that have a high potential to destroy your relationship. So talk about things that matter. Read more
How hard are long-distance relationships in college?
College is a place to meet new people, expand your world, and have fun. While a lot of young couples have every intention to stay together, the college offers a lot of temptations. And it might be healthy to have a break, explore the world and, if it’s meant to be, you’ll find your way back to each other. Read more
When long-distance relationships get hard?
Long-distance relationships are hard in the very beginning when partners find themselves unable to hug each other at the end of the day. After a few months comes a time when this situation becomes a new normal. But is it normal when you can’t touch your romantic partner? Read more
How can I make a long-distance relationship easier?
Begin by understanding why you are in a long-distance relationship.
How often will you see each other? How long are you expecting it to last?
How are you and your partner feeling about it?
Keep in mind that one of you may be more comfortable with a long-distance relationship than the other.
Express your needs and be accommodating towards one another. Read more