Going the distance? Here's what you must know to keep your relationship going strong.
Some say distance makes the heart grow fonder, while others warn long-distance relationships are doomed from the start.
LDRs are certainly difficult — the missed calls, your different schedules, not being able to attend special events together. But they're not impossible. What it really boils down to is how well you communicate. And, with today's apps, sites and social media sites, staying connected and growing stronger when you're miles away is easier than ever.
So how can you make your love from afar work — and thrive? Check out these tips from relationship experts and see must-have apps below.
1. Talk Every Day
Cell phones, Skype, G-chat, Facebook — there's no excuses not to talk to your partner every single day. Whether it's a call during your lunch break, a thoughtful love note or text just saying you miss him, however you can communicate each day, make it happen. Singles Warehouse explains, "The whole idea here is to continue sharing your life as much as possible so that you know what the other person is going through."
2. Make Goals For Every Visit
You've heard of couples who schedule sex or date nights, and well this isn't too different. When you do visit each other, make sure to set goals to use your time wisely and strengthen your relationship. There's probably so many things you want to do together in your short visit but make goals to stay on track and get closer to one another. "One weekend might be all about staying in bed to develop physical intimacy. Another might be about showing your partner the details of your everyday routine. The next visit might be about meeting local friends," says Rebecca A. Marquis, author of How to Be a Good Boyfriend: 34 ways to keep her from getting annoying, jealous or crazy.
3. Share Special Moments
Avocado lets you share special moments as a couple even when you're miles apart. The app keeps track of anniversaries, your next visit and let's you share love notes, cute photos, lists and calendars.
4. Talk About Sex
Who says you can't heat things up in the bedroom when you live in different places? Kindu: Sex Ideas for Couples will keep the passion thriving until that next visit. The app allows you to communicate openly about your sexual fantasies and keep things fresh, no embarrassment included. Want to try a new position? Bring toys into the bedroom? It provides couples with intimacy ideas that you rate as "definitely", "no thanks", or "maybe-open to discussion". The app will only reveal what you're both willing to try.
5. Video Chat Every Single Day
Just because you can't see each other every day doesn't mean you can't virtually see each other on a daily basis. Even if you're running out the door in the morning or dashing off to yoga class after dinner, a quick visual hello can go a long way in keeping the passion alive. "The consistent visual connections build familiarity and confidence in knowing one another, explains Marquis.
6. Go On Date Nights When You're Apart
Who said you had to be in the same place to enjoy a romantic date night? Instead of using Skype, Google Hangouts, or FaceTime for just for chatting, try connecting with your partner for video-chat date to keep things romantic until you see each other next. Watch your favorite TV show together or eat dinner at the same time. Expert Sandy Weiner even recommends getting dressed up and opening up some wine.
7. Have An End Plan
Not only should you have a plan about when your next visits will be, but it's important to discuss your goals for moving to the same place. "Long distance should be temporary," explains Singles Warehouse, "if you aren't comfortable taking those steps, then long distance isn't going to work for you — and you shouldn't be doing it.