10 Things That Happen In A Long Distance Relationship
To be honest, I feel like in one way or another, I’ve been in a long distance relationship all my life. Growing up, dad used to work in different countries. When my dad finally came home for good, I found myself in a serious relationship with someone who, like me, had eyes set beyond the Philippines.
Fast forward to today, and now, I have a ring on my finger, am lucky enough to travel as least twice a year, and still in a long distance relationship with the same guy. If my high school self could see me now, I bet she’d be stunned. Things definitely did not turn out according to plan. Then again, I’m glad it didn’t.
To say that I dove in head first in the whole LDR shebang would be an understatement. Growing up in one made me feel like I was prepared, but really, nothing can prepare a person for all the emotions that come with goodbyes, no matter how “routine” they get. Here’s a quick rundown of what happens:
1. Sleep becomes second priority because time difference is a real problem.
Time difference can be an absolute pain, especially when you’re trying to do your body good with 8 hours of sleep.
Vergs and I usually have a 7-hour difference. Although it may not seem like much, I also have to take into consideration the times when we’re available to talk. But like with any other relationship, it takes an added effort to date each other — even if, dates are via Facetime for now.
2. Savings are usually spent on plane tickets.
Last year, I was privileged to go on 3 major trips. I started 2016 with a brief 2 weeks in Virginia, spent 3 months mid-year in San Diego, and spent my birthday month in Spain. It goes without saying that plane tickets cost a lot, and I definitely would suggest keeping an eye out for any online sales if you catch any.
Unfortunately, because of the nature of Vergs’ job, I can’t really plan in advance and take advantage of the promos. Instead, I have a list of apps and websites that I abuse whenever I’m surprised with a message from Vergs saying, “Babe, come here. I’m on land for a month.” The struggle is real, you guys.
3. You constantly have a countdown in your head.
There are two kinds of countdowns: ones you get excited for and ones you wish your mind could stop thinking about.
I don’t know if it’s just me, but whenever I’m with Vergs, I have a voice in my head telling me the number of days I have left with him — even if our time together would’ve just started. It takes a bit of practice silencing the voice, but so far, I do see progress in every trip, so yay!
4. Birthdays, Christmas, and other special events make you feel more lonely.
Loneliness can either turn you into a hermit or have you go a complete 180 and make you want to spend every single moment surrounded with people. I’ve been both.
But I’ve also realized that loneliness turns me into a person that gets creative when giving gifts. I’ve got to say, it took me a while to make this care package, but I enjoyed it – right until I saw the shipping fee. Haha!
5. There might be a few make-or-break moments.
All jokes aside, there will be times when your relationship will be tested. Fights can get ugly and words will be misunderstood — punctuation marks and emojis can only do so much. An LDR, like any other relationship, involves a couple to either work through all their problems, or decide to call it quits. The choice is really up to the couple.
What I will say though is this, if you two decide to hold on until the very end, then you’ve met your match. <3
6. Sometimes, you’ll feel like everyone is a threat.
Insecurities suck, and they can be heightened while in a long distance relationship. This is where your support system comes in.
Personally, I have a rally of my best girlfriends who constantly remind me of my strengths and best features, especially when I’m feeling down. As long as you trust your significant other and know they respect you as their partner, no one is worthy of being a threat.
7. You realize the importance of trust and communication.
When all the tools you have for communication are dependent on internet and data, you tend to see your relationship in a whole new light. Yes, there will be days when you won’t get to talk to each other or even message. But that doesn’t really mean you can get hammered at a bar and have a one night stand… Unless of course, you two are okay with that.
8.Airports and all those questions at immigration become something you get used to.
Gone are the days you’d groan about a 3-hour layover, because you’ve experienced one that took a full 8-hours. In addition to this, you’ve already memorized where all the restrooms are and where the best cafe to eat is.
Since there are no direct flights from Manila to Jerez, I usually have about 3-4 layovers one way. The wait can be grueling so I usually tuck my hand carry bag with my laptop and a thick paperback book. I like adding at least 3 new ebooks in my phone too.
9. You and your significant other grow both as individuals and as a couple.
Your life shouldn’t be put on pause while in an LDR. So go on the solo trip you’ve always wanted, and continue working on making yourself better — even while the partner’s miles away. Turn the phrase “be someone you’d want to date” into a reality, and channel all your feelings into something productive. Plus, keeping yourself busy makes the time fly by faster and in turn, keeps your mind and emotions in check.
10.Goodbyes and see-you-laters will still hurt, no matter how many times you’ve gone through them.
As strong as people in LDRs seem to be, every goodbye still leaves a mark.
So far, I’ve had at least 5 rounds of see-you-laters with the husband, and although they do get easier, it still pretty much affects me pre and post departure. Then again, this is the situation I chose to live with, and I don’t regret deciding otherwise.
It goes without saying that long distance relationships aren’t for everybody. It involves a whole lot of work and sacrifice. Not to mention, too many feelings invested on a relationship that might or might not work.
But I guess, it all just really boils down to how much you want to be with someone. Because sometimes, that’s what keeps you holding on.
I’ve been meaning to write this entry for a while now. But I’d usually decide against it, because (1) my emotions can get hella crazy, (2) it’s a bit harder talking about more personal matters, and (3) I never really knew if this sort of thing would be relevant for my readers.
Currently, I’ve realized that I’ve got quite a number of people in my network who are experiencing the LDR-life. Sometimes I get pretty flustered when they ask me for advice, so I’m hoping this little entry will help.