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Surviving Christmas at home when you met your partner at university 

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Exeter chapter.

As the term draws to an end, it’s the first time in the academic year for students to have a break from lectures and go home for a well-deserved rest. However, if you’ve only recently gotten into a relationship with someone you met at university, then this could be your first time apart as a couple. This can be a really challenging time, so here are some helpful tips to help you have a lovely Christmas despite being away from your new boo!  

Make sure you plan before you leave

One of the most important things you can do in the last few weeks of term is plan! Sit down with your partner and have a conversation about what’s going to happen over the holidays. Talk about what both of your expectations are  – how many times a week would you like to call? Will you be working over the holidays, so are there any times you won’t be contactable? Are you going to visit each other? Are there any non-negotiables you have for spending time apart? What support do you think you’ll need? It’ll make the distance so much easier if you know where each other stand on things, and this conversation will be much more productive face to face.  

Give each other teddy bears. 

Last year my partner and I moved long distance over the summer and the week before we left, we made each other a build-a-bear! As someone whose love language is physical touch, having something to cuddle was an absolute godsend whenever I felt lonely. If you’re looking for something a little more budget-friendly than a build-a-bear, then just find any teddy bear you like – you can also dress them in newborn clothes (the pyjamas make them look really cute!). (P.S: if you need any more convincing you should read Amber’s article about emotional support build-a-bears).   

Exchange jumpers  

A similar idea is to find a jumper you don’t wear too often and give it to your partner. It’s so lovely to wear your partner’s jumper (especially if they’re bigger than you) – it feels like a warm hug! Before you give it to them, make sure you spray it with your favourite perfume so that it smells of you. You could even decant some of the bottle so that your partner can reapply it when it’s finished. A handy trick is to give them an old jumper so that if the perfume wears off, it still smells like you because you’ve worn it for ages. 

Set aside time 

Going home from university for the first time is a really big adjustment as it is, let alone when you also have to deal with missing your partner and not having them in walking distance. Set aside some time to adjust to this new environment. If you need to have a good cry, then just remember your feelings are totally valid, and it’s okay to express them in healthy ways. On a happier note you should also set time to talk to your partner, whether that’s texting, calling, or FaceTiming. It’s so important to make time to spend with your partner, just as you would if you were together in the same city.

Have virtual dates  

Virtual dates are one of the best ways to keep the spark alive over the holidays! There are loads of different date ideas you can explore together. For example, you can set up a Netflix watch party and find a new TV series to watch together. Or find a Christmas rom-com to get into the festive spirit if you want to spend a whole evening together. You could video chat with each other whilst cooking a new recipe and then eating it together. My favourite idea is going on a museum date – some museums will offer free virtual tours of their exhibitions which makes for a really wholesome date. Just have one of you share your screens and you’re good to go! Finally, if you have a bit of budget left over after Christmas shopping, you could have an art evening. Buy some paint and canvases and spend the night painting things!

Go and see each other  

Obviously, this option isn’t viable for everyone given that your homes could be a thousand miles away, but if you’re both in travelling distance, then I’d highly recommend going to see them over the break! It really makes all the difference only having to wait one week rather than two. If the distance is just that little bit too far, you could meet somewhere in the middle and have a day trip out together. This could also be a really good way to visit somewhere you’ve never been to before and make some special memories with your person.

Hi! My name's India and I'm this year's Sex and Relationships editor! I'm in my third-year of Film and Television studies at the University of Exeter. I'm a plus-sized and sex-positive feminist who loves listening to Harry Styles and Taylor Swift (Taylor's version ofc) :)