Surviving a Long Distance Relationship

Jade Augustine

Whether you've been physically separated due to circumstances or you've met online and have yet to meet in person, it can be excruciating to be physically apart from your partner. But the physical distance between the two of you doesn't have to mean that you have to be emotionally disconnected. There are plenty of ways to stay connected with your partner and keep things fresh and fun in your relationship until you can be together once again.

Here are 12 ideas for staying connected and present with your partner despite the barrier of distance:
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Plan movie dates

While you may not be able to sit side by side with your partner in a movie theatre right now, it doesn't mean that you can't still have movie dates. With tons of streaming services at your disposal, you and your partner are bound to find a movie you can agree on. You have the option of simply pressing play on the movie at the same time, or you can use a service that allows two users to watch a movie simultaneously.

Some might choose to send each other messages or stay on a video call during the movie, but if talking during movies isn't your thing, that's okay. You could always share your thoughts about the movie with each other once it's over.

If you find that virtual movie dates keep you connected with your partner, you could consider keeping a running list of movies or TV shows you two would like to watch together someday, whether it be for another virtual movie date or for a future in-person date.

Share a meal

There are tons of ways to do this, but the way you can stay most connected with your partner is by finding a recipe online and making the same meal together over a video call or phone call and eating together.

If you and your partner are from different countries, a fun way to learn more about each other's cultures is by making a traditional meal from their country, and teaching them one from yours.

Play games together

You might not get to see your partner's competitive side much when you're not physically together, but you can change that by playing multiplayer games online. Many video games allow you to play online against others, or you could play chess, checkers, billiards, or almost anything imaginable.

Alternatively, you can play games such as Truth or Dare or Never Have I Ever. The fun thing about these games is that you can make them as innocent or as saucy as the two of you feel comfortable with.

Send care packages

Only do this if you have some extra money, of course. Shipping can be expensive even domestically, but it can be even more pricy if you have to ship internationally. But if this is something you can feasibly do, it's a great way to feel closer to your partner. There's no need to put anything extravagant in your care package unless you want to.

Some ideas of what to put in a care package include candies, candles, little trinkets from where you live, a mixtape, jewelry, soaps, essential oils, or tea or hot chocolate packets. Of course, you can and should personalize this however you see fit.

Don't forget to include a handwritten note in your care package! It's the little things that mean the most.

Take a walk together

Sometimes a change of scenery is just what you need to keep things fresh and exciting. When the weather is nice, you can take a walk together over a video call and show each other around your respective cities or towns. After all, hopefully, you'll be visiting each other and exploring these places together hand in hand one day.

Ask deep questions

Sometimes it can be hard to think of things to talk about when you aren't physically with your partner. While it's important to stay connected and talk about the day to day activities that you both have going on, it's also imperative to stay connected on a deeper level.

Ask about your partner's childhood, their fears, what they think the meaning of life is, what their biggest aspirations are. A quick web search for deep questions to ask your partner will yield pages of results that you can sift through and ask as you see fit. Even if you know your partner well, there's a lot that you could discover that might surprise you and help you to form an even deeper connection with your partner.

Make playlists for each other

Whether you and your partner have similar tastes in music or your tastes are vastly different, making playlists for each other is a great way to discover what your partner enjoys, and it will expose you to new songs and musical artists that you might not have heard otherwise.

You could make romantic playlists of songs that remind you of one another, or simply make playlists of what you've been listening to lately. Alternatively, you could create a joint playlist that you can both add to. It's entirely up to you and what feels right for your relationship.

Order food for each other

If you know what types of food your partner likes and eats often, you could surprise them with their favorite meal showing up at their house or their office. You could also turn this into a date idea if you'd like and order food for each other and have a video call date while you share a meal. Whether it turns out to be a test of how well you and your partner know each other or an adventurous way for both of you to try new foods, this is a great way to stay connected with your partner.

Practice art together

You don't have to be exceptionally good at art to make this a fun date idea. You could practice drawing, painting, or even digital art with your partner and share your results. If you need a little extra inspiration, you could find a free art tutorial online and try it out with your partner.

Start a two person book club

Any books that you've been dying to read or reread? If so, why not consider sharing this experience with your partner? Starting a two person book club allows you to share an experience with your partner and to learn more about how they think and feel.

Add some of you and your partner's favorite books to the list, as well as some books you've been meaning to read someday, and discuss what you've read with one another on a weekly basis.

Get matching jewelry

No, you don't have to go out and buy rings - unless you want to. But having matching necklaces or bracelets with your partner can help you stay connected. You can buy them online through a site such as Etsy, which has tons of options specifically meant for people in long distance relationships, or you can even make jewelry yourself!

This can be as inexpensive as you desire. A threaded friendship-style bracelet can be all the reminder you need throughout the day that your partner is there for you and that you are deeply connected to them.

Regular phone calls, video calls, and texts

Don't discount the importance of simplicity when it comes to maintaining a long distance relationship. Send each other sweet texts throughout the day and keep each other updated on how your day is going.

Set aside time to have a video call or phone call with your partner regularly. Whether you schedule it at a consistent time of the week or choose to do it spontaneously, communicating with your partner in real-time is extremely important in maintaining a relationship. This time is precious since, for now, it is the closest you can be with your partner until you can close the physical gap. If at all possible, make sure to set aside time at least once a week where you can communicate in real-time with your partner in a location where you will not be interrupted or distracted.

Hopefully, you will be able to unite or reunite with your long distance partner soon, but in the meantime, you can use some of these tips to stay connected with your partner despite the physical distance.

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Jade Augustine is a writer from Fort Collins, Colorado. She is passionate about cats, dogs, entertainment, vegan food, and traveling.

Fort Collins, CO

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