Making Long-Distance Marriage Work

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Long Distance Relationships Can Be Hard
Put in some effort and a long-distance marriage can thrive.

As recently as twenty years ago, marriage meant living under the same roof and sleeping in the same bed "till death do you part." But economic changes, as well as our ability to communicate with people from all over the world, afford us more options with our career choices and location. This presents a new challenge for many relationships. What once seemed fatal to a marriage is now possible — and might even have some perks. Living apart can work for some couples, but it isn't easy. It requires commitment and excellent communication skills from both partners.

One of the biggest challenges of living apart is that it's harder to be sure of each other's intentions and goals. When you live together, you share most things on a day-to-day basis, making it easier to understand your partner's perspective. Not having that abilitiy can become a source of conflict, especially if you're having a rough day or feeling insecure.

Not surprisingly, couples who live apart often experience increased jealousy or difficulty with commitment. If the each party in the couple is mature enough to understand his or her indivdual needs and voice them clearly, this is less of an issue. However, many couples that live apart don't have this level of maturity or insight; it's difficult to achieve.

If you and your spouse are considering living apart from each other, consider these pieces of advice from successful and happily married couples who have lived apart longer than they've lived together.

1. Have a direct discussion about the reason for living apart. If both partners agree that this is going to work, it will. However, using living apart as an excuse to get away from each other will not work.

2. Make sure you each know who will be responsible for the nitty-gritty "home" and financial chores, tasks and arrangements. Keep reading...

More relationships advice from YourTango

Article contributed by

Mary Jo Rapini

Counselor/Therapist

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