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How I’ve Survived Being In A Long-Distance Relationship During College

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at VCU chapter.

When I was 15, I met a guy named Drew at my fun, summer lifeguarding job. I immediately knew that he would be the person I had a crush on for the remainder of my sophomore year and luckily, fate was in my favor. We had a class together and got assigned to be partners for a major project that thankfully required us to hang out (study) outside of school. Sadly, it was Drew’s senior year, and he had plans to go far, like, really far, away for college. Like his mom, uncle, older sister and cousins, he wanted to attend Auburn University, which is all the way in Alabama. 

A simple search on Google Maps can tell you that Auburn is 10 hours and 40 minutes away from me. We knew that breaking up was not an option and that we were about to begin our journey of 4 years of long-distance! As one could expect, it was not easy for a high school junior and a college freshman to maintain a romantic relationship with 663 miles keeping them apart. Drew and I very quickly began to realize that we needed to make more of an effort, develop routines and increase our communication skills if we wanted to stay together.  

What Worked for Us? 

At least every other day, Drew and I made time to talk on the phone via call or FaceTime. This gave us the opportunity to talk about our day, what we had for lunch, what homework we were dreading working on and of course how much we missed each other. There were some weeks that we didn’t get to hear each other’s voices as often, and that resulted in petty teenager arguments. But, after a while, we realized that it was the lack of communication that was causing these silly fights, not an increasing number of genuine disagreements. Although it may seem like these small conversations could get repetitive or boring, we always made sure we were making time for each other!  

Outside of our relationship, we were both getting the opportunity to grow in ways we never would have if it were not for the long-distance that we endured throughout the past 4 years. Drew was able to make new friends, start independent hobbies, and put the rest of his effort into his rigorous civil engineering degree! I was able to take advanced classes and skip a year of college, work two jobs, and be available for myself in ways I never would have before. These are things that I felt were important to recognize and appreciate to remain positive about our situation. This year, he is a senior and will be graduating in May! He plans to return to Virginia after graduation and I couldn’t be more excited for him to come home. On the other hand, I will forever be grateful for how long distance has helped us grow closer to each other! 

Tips for You 

If you’re reading this article and have just begun a long-distance relationship or have been in one for quite some time, there are a few things I can recommend from my own experience throughout the last four years. As a college girl in 2023, life can get hectic and overwhelming, but it’s always important to figure out what your priorities are! If you value your partner and want to maintain a healthy relationship, I think it’s always crucial to work on communication, trust, and friendship. Never let a crappy situation define you or what you want the outcome to be! The underlying advice is that if you’re willing to put in the work with someone you love, anything is possible. 

Cheyenne Bellair is an aspiring public relations professional and a current junior at Virginia Commonwealth University. She plans to graduate in 2025 and obtain a career in the public relations industry, working for an in-house agency. Recently, she has interned with the Orange County Downtown Alliance and local newspapers, such as The Somerset Front Porch, to better her experience and enhance her writing skills. In her free time, she enjoys reading, writing, and playing the piano! Some of her favorite stories to cover involve her own musical interests and live bands that are featured locally in Richmond, VA.