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When it comes to a relationship with someone you love, no one wants to be apart from that person for long periods of time. It’s painful watching their life go by in just pictures or FaceTime calls, knowing that you can’t be there for them during the happy and sad times. On the other hand, breaking up with your significant other just for the “college experience” can leave you with some regrets.

One of the positive things I’ve learned about being in a long distance relationship is that it gives you a lot of time and space to realize who you are without being dependent on another person. I think this is especially important in college because you are in a totally different environment and you have the freedom to mature as an individual. Also, even in non-long distance relationships, it’s always a good idea to spend a little bit of time apart from each other to combat the risk of your relationship consuming your entire personality. The distance allows for personal growth and the realization that you can be your own person outside of your relationship with someone else.

Another benefit of long distance relationships is that there is more focus on the emotional connection between you and your partner and not just the physical connection. Of course, intimacy in relationships is crucial, but distance can often help strengthen that emotional bond because you are more focused on the communication and trust aspect due to being apart from each other. This can help with those who tend to confuse lust for love because someone who is truly in a relationship for the right reasons will go through any length or time of distance if that means that you can be together in the end.

Personally, I have always struggled with trust issues in the past. It was something that was very hard to work through, but I truly believe that being in a long distance relationship helped to heal that part of me. Having to watch as your partner goes out with friends and does all the fun, exciting things that maybe you could have done together can bring up a lot of insecurities, especially if your trust has been betrayed in the past. A lot of people tend to overthink and get anxious when it comes to their significant other going out, but being able to recognize and face those insecurities and work past them to get to a place of total commitment and confidence is wholly worth it in the long run.

All of those feelings of anxiousness and insecurity can often lead to the dreaded green-eyed monster: jealousy. This is common in long distance relationships and is something that has torn so many relationships apart. You see your partner post a picture with someone of the opposite gender, and you can’t help but have a million jealous thoughts start racing through your mind. And no matter how much your partner reassures you that you have nothing to worry about, you can’t help but think of all the scenarios in which they could be lying. This goes hand in hand with overcoming trust issues, but what I’ve found helps a lot is recognizing where exactly those feelings of jealousy are actually coming from. A lot of times, you are more jealous that you are unable to be with your partner more often while others are able to hang out with them every day. You don’t necessarily believe that you’re being cheated on, but you simply just miss your partner.

While in a long distance relationship, it’s hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. You just want to reach the point where you and your partner can be together unconditionally, whether it’s living together or being in the same city as each other again. There are going to be days where you don’t think it’s worth it to do long distance or you feel as if the relationship has changed for the worse because of how long it’s been since you last saw each other. But if you don’t let those feelings control you, then it can be easier to deal with and end up being even more worth it than you thought.

Grace Thompson

Illinois State '24

Hi! My name's Grace, and I am a sophomore at Illinois State University, studying Public Health and hoping to go into the epidemiology field. I am from Elgin, IL, about 45 minutes from Chicago. Some things I love are shopping, traveling, and playing with my dog while I'm at home. Joining Her Campus at ISU is something I am so happy that I did, because I met so many amazing girls and am able to write articles I am passionate about that will hopefully inspire others! Feel free to check out my Instagram if you'd like! @gracecthompsonn
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