Reasons why being in a long distance relationship isn’t such a bad thing

Amy Morris, Columnist

Long distance relationships have been known to fail and be a strenuous experience by some people. However, I have a different outlook on them. I have been in a long distance relationship for over a year now, and it has taught me so much.

I will admit living close to the person who shares part of your heart is nice. Forming a relationship at the start can be hard though. With this generation it can be hard to know someone’s intentions. With dating apps and social media in play, a lot of people aren’t looking for a real connection.

To be in a long distance relationship a person has to be committed. Long distance relationships also allow for an emotional connection to form before a physical one does. It can be easy to get caught up in physical attraction rather than actually forming one with the heart.

Not everyone is good at long distance I will admit, but if that person is worth it then the distance won’t matter. Taking the time to connect with someone as a person regardless of getting anything in return is a beautiful experience. I don’t think long distance is a good experience when it lasts forever, but when it’s only a couple months or years it’s not such a bad thing.

Being in a long distance relationship can make a couple appreciate the time spent together more too. I know I never take time spent with my person for granted.There are so many people in my life I see so often. However, when you don’t see someone every day the time spent becomes more special.

According to an article by The Atlantic, “long-distance couples report being more in love than those in the same place.” In contrast to that finding, long distance couples are also more likely to break up when they start living together compared to couples that aren’t long distance.

Visiting each other often for longer periods of time can be a good way to ease into the shock of living together that may lead to a break up. Long distance has its challenges and upsides but a healthy balance of staying connected versus having enough space is important.

I know a fear some people have is losing oneself in a relationship when they spend so much time with a person. Being in a long distance relationship allows a person to keep that independence outside the relationship.

However, staying connected is the most important aspect of a long distance relationship. According to research by the Gottman Institute, “happy couples turn towards their partners approximately 20 times more than couples in distress during everyday.” Staying connected can simply mean sending a text message, FaceTiming, watching TV virtually together or doing other activities that help a person feel closer to their partner.

When two people live in completely different locations they are living completely different lives as well. Without an effort to stay connected, there is no tie between those two people’s lives.

At the end of the day, I think long distance relationships have too much of a negative stigma when it’s really not all that bad. I’ve been told by so many people that my relationship wouldn’t last because we’re long distance. While long distance may require more effort to stay connected, it’s really not all that different than a normal relationship.