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Sex + Relationships

Navigating a Long Distance Relationship in College

Falling in love during my first semester of college was truly magical. I was in a new city with a new boy, and we did everything together, from picnics in the Boston Common to romantic walks along the waterfront. It almost felt like I was in my own Netflix rom com…until Thanksgiving break hit, and we couldn’t see each other everyday. We had online classes from home until mid-January. I was in Colorado and he was in Connecticut, which felt like worlds away. 

We’ve been together for 15 months and have dealt with a winter break and summer break apart. With months of not seeing each other in-person, we were forced to find ways to show each other we cared and carve out time for each other. Here are my tips for maintaining a relationship, even if you’re hundreds of miles apart.

Set a specific time to FaceTime everyday (or every other day if you’re busy)

It was really important for me to be able to see my partner’s face and talk to him as normally as possible. We would set an hour or two to FaceTime everyday and tried to keep the timing consistent, so it was easier to plan around. We still had to cancel and reschedule, but it was a nice time to count on being able to talk to each other. I recommend picking a time before you go long distance, so you both know what you expect from each other. 

Send random cute texts when you think of them

I think it’s unhealthy to constantly be texting your significant other throughout the day, but it’s nice to send them a little reminder that you care. It always makes my day better when my boyfriend sends me something about how he was thinking of me. We will also text each other when something reminds us of the other person, so we remember to talk about it later on FaceTime. You don’t need to send your S.O. a play-by-play of your life—just a few simple texts can help keep you and your partner happy. 

Send them a letter or a gift

When you’re apart for multiple months, a physical reminder of your love can also be super helpful. I sent my boyfriend a physical letter in the mail because his love language is acts of service, so I wanted to do a cute thing for him even though I couldn’t be with him. Taking the time to write down how much you love your partner is a lovely way to make your partner’s day brighter. 

Communication is key!

If you feel like something isn’t working, talk to your partner about it. If they don’t see you in person everyday, it’s much harder to gauge how you’re feeling and if everything is okay. Make sure you let them know if you want anything to change. 

The most important thing to remember is to show your partner that you love and care about them. Make sure you both feel happy with the situation, and if you don’t, make a change. If you truly love each other and make an effort to show it, you can get through long distance. 

Maddie Browning is a journalism major with environmental studies and publishing minors at Emerson College. She has written for other campus publications, including Your Magazine and Atlas Magazine, as well as Colorado Community Media.
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