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Long distance relationships in college – are they worth it?

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 Queen's U chapter.

LDRs (long-distance relationships) are tough in college. Whether it’s your high school sweetheart, a partner from summer camp or the cute person you met on your exchange, LDRs in college can come to be in various circumstances. But the real question is — are they worth it? Is it worth being tied down during such formative years? Before answering that, you need to ask yourself some preceding questions.

Are you emotionally available?

First, let’s talk about emotional availability. To be emotionally available is to have the ability to open up to others, without putting up any facade or front. It means having the capacity to be raw and real with a SO (significant other) about how you are feeling and perhaps some deeper-rooted problems aswell. Emotional availability takes a lot of work but is a crucial asset to have before going into an LDR. Time apart from your significant other brings up a lot of feelings; loneliness, sadness, or even anger. To be able to share those feelings with your long-distance partner and be honest about your emotions will be necessary, because bottling that up for the months or even years you spend apart will be detrimental to your mental health, and ultimately your relationship. 

Do you see a future with them?

Secondly, you might need to ask yourself if you see a future past college with you and your SO. It’s hard to want to stay committed to a partner that you see no future with; whereas, if you’re in an LDR with someone you see as your lifelong partner, it gives you an end prize for getting through the long distance. Looking forward to your future together is a great way to get through the pain of being apart; which is something you just can’t have with a partner you only see as short-term. It might even be a conversation you want to have with your partner before going a long distance; is this something we see going a long way?

Is there pre-existing mutual trust in the relationship?

Thirdly, think about the level of trust you and your partner have with one another. Is there a secure sense of 100% mutual trust? No relationship, in person or long distance, can thrive if you are constantly arguing over where one partner was the night before (we’ve all been there). But it holds even more weight when you are apart from your partner because arguing over the phone is even more painful. If you can’t trust a partner that you live in the same city as, you most definitely can’t trust them on the other side of the globe. Assess your trust in one another before getting yourself into an LDR.

Once you’ve established these three core elements that are necessary for a successful LDR, then you can ask yourself if you are willing to be tied down during your formative, and sometimes experimental years. And that’s a choice that only you and your partner can make — you know yourself best! 

Layla Artzy

Queen's U '25

I'm a 3rd-year student at Queen's University studying Politics. Some of my favourite things include vegan restaurants, coffee, self-care, the outdoors, and a good time with friends and family!