So you’re in a long distance relationship (LDR), and naturally you’re looking for a LDR guide. What sort of LDR guide will serve you best? How about a ‘Sherpa’ – the people who lead adventurers up Mt. Everest – will they serve you well as your LDR guide? Let’s be realistic, books can work well as a LDR guide too.
A long distance relationship guide can be different things to different people. We’re all born with a burning need to have a relationship with someone we care for. But some of us choose the tougher road, the road less traveled, a LDR. I recommend that anyone who traverses this road be well prepared before taking on such a journey. This type of relationship needs a LDR guide for sure!
I’ve been in many relationships in my life, and a few of them – two to be exact, were LDRs. Did I have a LDR guide when I started out? Oh no! I was young, naive and full of lust. I felt I could make it on my own while my loved one was living in another city. I soon found that I needed a LDR guide to be my daily companion.
I’d like to share my experiences with LDRs and give you some insight into my LDR guide.
Preparation for the Unknown
When I started out I didn’t have the slightest clue about my long distance relationship guide. I had lots of relationship experience to fall back on – I felt more than prepared for what lay ahead. I knew my partner was living in another city, we had telephones, cell phones, email, the Internet, web cams, text messaging – what more did I need. I soon found I needed my LDR guide to smooth the road. No matter how much technology I had – I wasn’t prepared for the emotional onslaught that was about to happen.
I found myself longing for her voice after we hung up the phone. Why wasn’t this covered in my long distance relationship guide? How could I have been so absent-minded and not thought of the obvious. No matter how many way you have to communicate, you also need to be prepared for the emotions that come with a LDR. My next points will help with this.
Setting and Managing Expectations
When you’re in a ‘normal’ relationship (same city) you just chat when we feel like it, send an email here or there. But when you enter a long distance relationship – communication becomes a staple in the relationship and it become quality instead of quantity. It’s important to have expectations on when you will communicate and for how long. There’s nothing written in your LDR guide that prepares you for feeling snubbed, or forgotten when your loved one isn’t online, doesn’t return your call or email.
Setting these expectations in the beginning will save you a lot of mental anguish. Make sure you leave a page or two open in your LDR guide to make mental notes. Not having expectations met can lead to troubling feelings about the long distance relationship and affect its survival.
Planning your Communication
As I’ve hinted previously, entering into a long distance relationship means you’ll need tools or services in order to communicate. I know it sounds obvious but you wouldn’t believe how silly I felt the first time was asked to have a voice conversation over MSN and I didn’t have a microphone. I felt lousy that I missed out on this opportunity to chat voice to voice. And with the Internet, this can be done for free (except the cost of a headset microphone).
So make sure your LDR guide has an entry for your communication checklist. The more ways you have to communicate, the less apart you’ll feel. Nothing is better than getting a ‘(k)’ which means ‘kiss’ in text speak to me, or a dozen of them on your cell phone as a text message.
I hope you’ve learned about your own internal long distance relationship guide. It lives inside you and as silly as it sounds – it works. Make notes in it often. I sure did!