As many people know, long distance relationships are tough and it takes two strong people to fight against the odds. One key factor that has helped my relationship with “J” succeed was setting rules. Mind you, these rules weren’t written in stone that we both came up with before we decided to date; instead, they were rules that we adopted and emerged during our relationship.
Here are the two main rules that have helped us fight to stay together, despite the distance:
Create Clear Expectations and Intentions
The first thing that came out of my mouth when he told me he had developed feelings was that distance was going to be hard. We both knew that we couldn’t just stay friends and decided to take that leap.
Since we both had the same understanding in what a relationship should consist of, it wasn’t hard to figure out what expectations that was needed of a girlfriend and boyfriend. People date to see if the other person will eventually be the ideal wife or husband. A long distance relationship is no different.
As our friendship grew so did our bond as a couple and eventually, talks of the future was brought to the surface.
Better Understanding of Each Other’s Needs
As communication plays a huge role in making long distance relationships work, so does respect for each other’s wants and needs.
Not every couple has the same interests and hobbies so it’s always important to provide time for each other to enjoy their favorite pastimes. However, if there is a similar interest such as watching a movie, it’s always nice to be able to do things together—even if it has to be done via Skype.
Every individual is different and unique in his or her own way, I personally like my alone time, especially when I’m irritated or moody. So when I tell him I need some “me time”, he will provide that space for me. Then there are times when I become emotional (usually during that time of the month) and he will provide me the assurance I need.
Rules shouldn’t be something that is written as a list of what to do and what not to do.
Instead, it should emerge organically based on both personalities and shared values. Every relationship is different and not all rules apply in the game of love. But one thing that is common throughout any romance is finding that balance.
You need to know what works for both you and your partner without the risk of losing your own individuality. Laying a foundation and having clear and honest communication will help your relationship be successful in fighting against the odds.