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6 Rules for Making a Long-Distance Relationship Work

Maintaining a long-distance relationship sucks, even if love in the digital age makes it easier than ever to stay connected.

While I’ve never found myself trying to navigate love miles apart, I know plenty of folks who have. They’ll be the first ones to tell you long-distance relationships are both risky and emotionally draining, made only better by the sweet anticipation of meeting again.

Allow these 6 rules to help bridge the distance between you when geography has been unkind:

Honesty: Trust, while a biggie in any relationship, is made only harder by the distance between you. Your willingness to express your fears and personal insecurities about the separation can go a long way in resolving your fears. On the flip side, knowing you have an anxious partner will make you better able to ease certain fears and reassure your commitment to the relationship.

Daily Communication: No matter how unsexy or premeditated daily communication dates may seem, they’re vital to the success of your relationship. Don’t allow busy lives and unforgiving time zones get in the way of a simple “I love you” or being in the know about the casual happenings of your partner’s everyday life.

Maintain Intimacy: No one is asking you to send nakey pics via sext, but finding creative ways to maintain intimacy matters. From scheduling a movie night where you both begin the same movie at the same time and watch it “together” via Skype, to getting a little naughtier via web cam, texting and talking suggestively can help keep the spark alive during your time apart.

Schedule Regular Visits: Eager anticipation of the next visit is the best way to zap the sting of being apart. Anxieties flair when the time and place of your next meeting remains uncertain. Best advice: Schedule the next visit before saying goodbye during your current one.

Determine Your Commitment Level: Before stepping foot in opposite directions, agree on your commitment level to the relationship. Are you in a monogamous relationship? How do you see the relationship working? What are your relationship deal-breakers? Addressing each partner’s expectations helps promote the strength, trust, and understanding required in a successful long-distance relationship.

Plan an End Date: You can’t maintain a long distance relationship forever. No matter the circumstances keeping you apart, eventually one or both of you will have to move to be together. How long are you willing or able to be apart? Knowing your long-distance relationship is temporary can make the distance easier to bear.

To read all 10 rules for successful long-distance relationships, click here.

Have you ever been in a long-distance relationship?

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