Love knows no boundaries — especially those involving area codes and state borders. Good news: If you've got a boyfriend in another state, your relationship may actually fare better than traditional relationships, reports a 2013 study in the "Journal of Communication." Alas, long-distance relationships do come with challenges. Thankfully, the right planning can help you clear these hurdles and build a healthy, stable foundation for you and your boyfriend.
Supersize Your Communication
In a traditional relationship, it would likely get tedious and annoying if you bombarded your boyfriend with too-frequent updates on what you're doing. However, if he lives in another state, constant updates about your day help him to learn more about your world and makes him feel included in your life. Communicate at least once per day with phone calls, emails or text messages — use any method of communication necessary to stay in touch. Regular updates not only bond you two together but also help reduce insecurities and boost trust.
Set Great Expectations
When you're separated by hundreds or thousands of miles, it's especially critical that both you and your boyfriend know exactly what each of you expects out of this relationship. Know how you expect this relationship to work, and what you expect your long-distance boyfriend to contribute to your life. Then clearly outline this so that you're both on the same page. Also, know what his and your life goals are. It's easy for long-distance couples to forget to discuss everyday life issues, such as those involving finances and religion. However, these types of topics are important for any long-term relationship, long-distance or otherwise.
Webcams and text messages are fine, but try to see each other in the flesh as often as possible. In fact, Rita Watson, writing for "Psychology Today," recommends that long-distance couples see each other at least once every three weeks for optimum relationship health. The more, the better -- depending on factors such as your budget and time constraints. While technology can help you communicate, it can't fully replicate the experience of an in-person conversation.
Creatively Show He's on Your Mind
If your boyfriend is a state or two away, keeping that romantic spark burning takes extra effort since you won't be able to go on regular dates or spend a lot of time together. Try to find unique ways to show that you're thinking of him. For example, surprise him by mailing him a gift that reminded you of him, or email him an impromptu video greetings that shows him what you did that day.
- Toronto Star: Long-Distance Relationships Not Doomed to Fail, Study Says
- Psychology Today: Love from Afar - Staying Close While You Live Apart
- Marie Claire: 4 Secrets to Long-Distance Success
- Eharmony Advice: Long-Distance Relationship Survival Guide
- Better Health: Are Long-Distance Relationships Healthy?
- Psychology Today: Long Distance Love is a Touch and Talk Challenge
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