Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo

At first, I was going to call this article, “how to manage a long-distance relationship in college,” but the truth is that I am still figuring it out myself. I am not going to claim to have all the answers, because I don’t. Instead, I would like to share my personal experience of how I have coped with and managed a relationship while being away at college. 

I have been with my boyfriend since our junior year of high school, and when I chose to attend a college that was three hours away from my hometown, he and I both had our worries. We were used to spending a lot of time together, as our houses are only a five-minute drive apart and we consider each other best friends. It would be a big change for us, but we wanted to make an effort to adjust.  The summer before I left was bittersweet. We did not talk too much about my going away, but it was still in the back of our minds. When it came time for me to pack my things and move into college, it took a while to get used to the new arrangement. It was hard for us because it felt as if we were living two completely different lives, completely devoid of one another. We went from being able to be together whenever we pleased, to trying to work out different arrangements to be able to meet. 

During my freshman year of college, my boyfriend and I went through pretty big bumps in the road. The events were hard enough on their own, but it made it even tougher that we were so far away from each other. Having to try and resolve conflicts over messaging or even phone calls were difficult and led to misunderstandings. There were times where I felt very alone at Millersville physically, but I also felt alone in my relationship. Our separate lives caused us to pay attention to dissimilar things and see issues from two very different points of view. I found myself missing how things were all of the time. I dove into my schoolwork as a distraction, so I was performing well in that aspect, but I was unhappy. I did not reach out to make friends and I was usually always in my dorm room just doing schoolwork and even taking on extra work when I had nothing to do. 

It was hard to see from each other’s points of view due to living our separate lives. I was insecure and was worried if we did not see each other enough, we would drift apart and end up losing touch with one another. I was worried our relationship would change and that we would also change too much to try and fix it. The problem with this is that we both had our fears and our doubts, but we did not talk to each other about them, and when we did, it was not in a proper way. Our communication weakened in result to this, which affected us and our relationship greatly. 

After my first year of college and our bumps in the road, my boyfriend and I really delved into how we could fix what had been going wrong so we could re-strengthen our relationship. We both explained what had been bothering us and planned what to do when those feelings arise in the future, or when more situations come along that are similar to the ones that left us uneasy. It was then that I realized that one of the main problems was that we had lost a very important key to having a smooth relationship – communicating with each other. I am a firm believer that in relationships, communication is key, even if it is difficult for me sometimes. Both of us worked extremely hard to give our all into the relationship and be there for one another, even if we are three hours away. 

Now, as I am back as a sophomore, our relationship is stronger than ever. My boyfriend and I have defeated so many obstacles, and I am beyond proud of us. Our communication is the best it has ever been, even if I am away again. He and I were able to adjust and manage the big change. A huge change like moving away to college can already be troublesome for an individual, but in a relationship, the stressful feelings are felt by both people. Not only is the individual worrying about their own mixed emotions, but he or she is also trying to help with his or her partner’s as well. 

Learning how to manage a long-distance relationship is not easy at all, and even though my situation has improved, I am still learning. What I have found to be helpful is to find time for each other. Even a text message here and there to ask about each other’s day is showing effort. Planning visits brings excitement, as both partners should try to take turns doing the traveling. When problems arise, let the other one know about current feelings, and make a point in either addressing it face to face, over the phone, or on Facetime to give each other undivided attention and so nothing is misunderstood through messaging. Also, just let the other one know how much he or she means to you. Being reminded of that can only be beneficial and make your partner feel good about him or herself, and about the relationship.

My advice to you is to tackle the issue head-on, but keep in mind to do so with your partner instead of being against them. Being in a relationship is an active choice and it is hard work. Love is about choosing the person you want to work hard with and grow from there. 

HCXO, Kasidy

Images courtesy of Google Images.

Kasidy Bidelspacher

Millersville '22

Dancer. Writer. Lover. I am a twenty-one-year-old junior with a psychology major. I am just going about my life trying to spread more love :) Check out my published poetry book on Amazon and eKindle called "Lotus Flowers" !
Similar Reads👯‍♀️