Long-distance relationships can be fun and exciting or they can also be challenging and hard. But are they worth it?
Long-distance relationships are great if you get on well with someone and have the money to travel and to close the distance. But when your long-distance relationship brings you more sadness and frustration than happiness and fulfillment, you should ask yourself if it’s really worth it for you.
In this article, we’ll talk about the pros and cons of a long-distance relationship. To help you decide if your long-distance relationships are worth it lets recap what they are along with some pros and cons.
What are long-distance relationships?
Long-distance relationships are romantic relationships. They can start online with someone you’ve never met or come into your current relationship.
One important aspect of long-distance relationships is a lack of physical intimacy. This is why they work well for a short while for people who like their personal space and have the means to visit each other when they wish. However, many couples in long-distance relationships feel see distance as an inconvenience. This is particularly true for people who were together before they have to deal with the long-distance.
If you are starting a new long-distance relationship online, you have an opportunity to meet someone from a different culture. Anyone with internet can become your partner. This is as amazing as it is overwhelming.
With online dating, you have an option to meet the person you wouldn’t otherwise meet. Although if you believe in destiny, you don’t need the internet. There are many reasons why people are looking for partners online, but that’s a topic for another time.
Long-distance relationships can be particularly challenging for couples who’ve lived together before. It can be a shock to wake up alone after getting used to having your partner next to you. When your partner is away, you know what you are missing out. After some time, this emptiness can become hard to deal with, and that’s when problems with having a long-distance relationship begin to develop.
Whether you are about to start a new long-distance relationship or are in one, take a step back to decide if it’s worth continuing or is it better to end it.
Now, let’s have a look at some advantages and disadvantages of long-distance relationships.
Advantages of long-distance relationships
We’ve already mentioned that if you have the means to visit each other, you can maintain a healthy relationship for quite a while.
Here’re some other advantages of long-distance relationships:
- The world is your oyster. You can find someone close to home or in the other part of the world.
- If you connect to someone from a different culture, you can.
- Online dating sites and apps let you filter by specific criteria.
- If you have certain values, beliefs, and interests, you can identify if your special someone shares them early on.
- You don’t have to respond straight away to their questions and can take the time you need to ask your own.
- You can also use it as an opportunity to travel and potentially move to a different country.
- You get a lot of time and space to focus on your personal goals and achievements.
- Even though you may not see each other every day, when you do, it’s all the more special.
- A long-distance relationship could be one of the few ways you avoid taking each other for granted.
This list can go on, but you get the idea. Long-distance relationships get a bad rap because people focus on what they don’t have rather than on what they do. That said, long-distance relationships can also get hard.
Disadvantages of long-distance relationships
If you don’t have the means to see each other as often as you’d like, one of you might be tempted to find intimacy with someone else. In a healthy relationship, you’d talk about it before it happens, but sometimes the impulse can be too strong.
People who act on this impulse and cheat on their partner tend to regret it afterward. But once the trust is broken, it is hard to rebuild.
If a long-distance relationship lasts a long-time there’s a chance it’ll get boring, or your feelings may start to fade away.
If you wanted to be alone, you would just be single. But you are in a relationship, which means you want to be with someone else. And if you want a romantic relationship or you are in one, then physical intimacy has to be part of it.
The problem with a long-distance relationship is that not only are you physically alone when you need someone. But you are also closed to any opportunity to be with someone physically if you are in an exclusive relationship. That’s why an open relationship can work for some couples who are facing long-distance, as long as they are on the same page.
So here are the main disadvantages of long-distance relationships:
- Meeting someone online can be misleading.
- If people look for a relationship online, you need to know why. Can they not find someone nearby, or are they trying to run away from something?
- Lack of physical intimacy. Some people need to be close to their partner more than others, so for them being apart is a lot harder. This may also lead to cheating.
- Visiting each other can be expensive. And if you don’t have the money or the time to travel as much as you’d like, it will be a problem.
- Communication in a long-distance relationship is different from the regular one. You can only express yourself verbally, which can be limiting.
- Misunderstandings are easy to arise and hard to solve.
- Feeling deprived of physical closeness can lead to jealousy and distrust.
There are many other problems couples may have in a long-distance relationship. But it doesn’t mean that all long-distance relationships have to face these problems. If you understand what long-distance relationships are and how to handle them, you can prevent these problems. And if you have a healthy relationship with understanding and clear communication, you can resolve the issues when they arise.
Is it worth starting a long-distance relationship?
It’s worth starting a long-distance relationship if you have the means to sustain it. In the beginning, you can get to know someone online through texts, phone, and video calls. But if you get on well and your special someone ticks your boxes, after a few months you’ll need to meet.
You can get to know someone online as much as you want, but you only know the real person when you meet them.
You also want to meet a few times to see what it’s like being with them. Unless you meet, as far as your reality goes, this person is only an idea.
And of course, if your long-distance relationship becomes serious, at least one of you will have to move. This means leaving all you know behind. Your family, friends, house, etc. If you don’t have any of the above or you are easy on your feet, moving to live in a different place can be quite an experience.
Moving in with someone is a whole different thing, for which you really should take the time to prepare.
Is it worth being in a long-distance relationship?
Being in a long-distance relationship is worth it if it’s a healthy relationship. A healthy relationship is when partners have trust, understanding, and amazing communication to share their feelings and solve their issues.
Being in a long-distance relationship can be a lot of fun, or it can be hard work. If it works for you and your partner, then great. But if it doesn’t, it can get complicated very quickly and may not be worth the trouble.
Is it worth staying in a long-distance relationship?
Staying in a long-distance relationship for a short while can be totally worth it. You can catch up with your personal life, go out with friends and do the things you always wanted but never had the time for.
But a lot of couples don’t see it that way. They see their long-distance relationship as a struggle. And when you see your relationship as a struggle, it makes it almost impossible to see the good parts. So, if all you get from a long-distance relationship is struggle and suffering and still trying to keep it going you should ask yourself why and if it’s worth it for you.
Why are long-distance relationships worth it?
Long-distance relationships can be worth it if they help you get through the relocations period for example. Some couples have to be away for some time for some reason, so keeping the emotional connection is important.
If a young couple is separated because of college or university, I am advocating that a long-distance relationship will hold them back from exploring the world of relationships with different people. And on this occasion, in my opinion, it may not be worth it.
When are long-distance relationships worth it?
Long-distance relationships are worth it when you get on well and have the money to travel and see each other as often as you’d like.
They are worth it when they help you achieve a specific aim. For example, you want to maintain an emotional connection with your partner, but you have to move for a job for a few months. Even with the lack of physical intimacy, you can make it work for a few months.
But if you are in a long-distance relationship for an indefinite period, it will be very hard to make it work for most couples.
How to tell if a long-distance relationship is worth it?
You can tell that your long-distance relationship is worth it if you can embrace it for what it is. If instead, you will try to make it into what you want it to be, it’ll bring you more hardship, and that’s just not worth it.
Is a long-distance relationship right for you?
Being in a relationship is a personal experience. So you should decide when a long-distance relationship is worth it and when it’s not. Long-distance relationships are right for couples who are happy with this form of relationship. If instead of feeling like you are missing out on being together, you are enjoying having extra time for yourself.
I’ll give you pointers to help you decide if a long-distance relationship is something that can work for you. If it does and you’d like to give it a go, check out the article on starting a long-distance relationship.
One thing you could do is to weigh all pros and cons of having a long-distance relationship in your situation. If in doubt, you can always try it and see if it works for you. But if you are in a relationship and have to keep it long-distance, make sure you have a date to reunite and a solid plan on maintaining communication and emotional connection until then.
The obvious downside is the lack of physical intimacy. You can have a lot of fun being in a long-distance relationship, but if you are serious about this relationship, you’ll need to move in together.
Long-distance relationships aren’t for everyone. But if you are in one you can certainly make the most of it.
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
Is a long-distance relationship worth it?
If you have feelings for each other, then starting a long-distance relationship is worth it. After you get to know each other better, you can reassess. This is the question only you can answer. But let me ask you something else… Are you having strong feelings for this person? Are you excited to get to know them better? Does this person bring love into your life? Read more
Is it a good idea to have a long-distance relationship?
A long-distance relationship can be a good idea if it doesn’t last a long time. You also need to consider the expense of travel, visits, presents and potentially moving. Read more
What are the advantages of long-distance relationships?
• The world is your oyster. You can find someone close to home or in the other part of the world.
• If you connect to someone from a different culture, you can start a relationship with them.
• Online dating sites and apps let you filter by specific criteria.
• If you have certain values, beliefs, and interests, you can identify if your special someone shares them early on.
• You don’t have to respond straight away to their questions and can take the time you need to ask your own. Read more
What are the disadvantages of a long-distance relationship?
• Meeting someone online can be misleading.
• If people look for a relationship online, you need to know why. Can they not find someone nearby or are they trying to run away from something?
• Lack of physical intimacy. Some people need to be close to their partner more than others, so for them being apart is a lot harder. This may also lead to cheating.
• Visiting each other can be expensive. And if you don’t have the money or the time to travel as much as you’d like, it will be a problem.
• Communication in a long-distance relationship is different from the regular one. You can only express yourself verbally, which can be limiting. Read more
Is it worth starting a long-distance relationship?
It’s worth starting a long-distance relationship if you have the means to sustain it. After you get to know someone online, you’ll need to see each other a few times in different places to see how it feels to be with them. Then if you get on well and will decide to move in together, there’s also the relocation cost. Read more