A Psychologist Shares The Best Advice For Going Long Distance In Your Relationship

Sometimes you have to go your separate ways – no, not a break up, literally to two different places location wise, when it comes to your relationship.

Which can make anyone’s mind go crazy. Whether it’s the fear of missing out on fun things with them, or if they’ll find someone knew, we can overthink way too much when it comes to going the extra miles in a relationship.

According to Dr. Barbara Greenberg Ph.D., from Psychology Today, there a are a few things you can do to help yourself – and enhance your relationship.

1. Be on the same page.
Doctor says … The most important issue is that of commitment. Are you and your partner totally in and committed to trying to make the relationship work? If the answer is a resounding and emphatic yes, then you are starting out on solid ground. 

2. Talk it out, and plan it out – don’t just wing it.
Doctor says …Set up clear expectations. Discuss how frequently you will communicate. Are you expecting to connect daily? When will you visit each other? Who will pay the plane fare? You are practicing developing good communication skills, which are essential to any thriving relationship. This, too, is essential because, as we have learned over the years, “absence makes the heart grow fonder” is false. We need to stay in contact for fondness to remain intact. Finally, it is important to develop relationship habits and rituals. These keep the romance alive and well.

3. Figure out your jealousy level – no, seriously.
Doctor says … When you are in a long-distance relationship, your partner will make friends whom you don’t know. It is extremely unlikely that a relationship can thrive if it is characterized by insecurity and jealousy. Make your own set of friends and develop a balance of friends, work, and play. Social isolation will make you more vulnerable not only to being dependent on your long-distance partner but will also place you at risk for anxiety and depression, and you don’t want that, right? 

4. Don’t put them on a pedestal.
Doctor says …  Try very hard not to idealize your partner. There is a tendency to think of your long-distance partner as closer to perfect than he or she actually is. This is problematic because it will lead to disappointment and heartbreak when we see our partner’s imperfections. 

5. Test it out or make a “make or break” plan.
Doctor says … It is extremely helpful if you have an endpoint—a point at which you will be together. If you are heading to different colleges, spend the summer together then decide. For those in a different set of circumstances, such as having jobs in different states, it might be necessary to set up a plan to look for jobs in the same state so that long distance comes to an end.

Read the doctor’s full advice when it comes to dating long distance, here.