Fall and winter are my favorite seasons. I am a Winter’s child and love cold weather and being able to finally snuggle up inside with a hot, hot cup of tea and your favorite knit. Unfortunately, cold weather and autumn leaves bring cold and flu with them. I am certain that nobody really loves being sick, especially when you are far away from all those potential caretakers. You know who I’m talking about: your S.O. (And your mom too.)
I hate it even more when my partner falls ill. It makes the distance feel more pronounced and me feeling completely helpless because I cannot make him hot drinks to help him feel better. Fortunately, there are some things we can still do as long distance couples that help the sick days feel tolerable.
My partner and I do this even when we aren’t sick, but it’s quite an impossible task during the week. However, when you need to stay home to take care of your sickness you have two things on hand: time, and exhaustion. Sleeping with your partner will make them feel better emotionally. It feels like you really are there to take care of them. Even if you can’t sleep, just be there with them. Use the silent time for doing something productive, like reading or studying.
I know… Usually, colds don’t last ages, and your card will arrive way too late. It is still a nice gesture that will make them feel warm and fuzzy inside, just enough to kill even the last bit of the nasty germs habiting their body.
We all fall ill from time to time, so take a look into the future and send them a care package in advance. There are plenty of ideas on Pinterest, for instance. You could put some nice tea, a good book and a nice film in a package. I am sure that this gesture would be highly appreciated… even if they aren’t that sick.
I don’t know about you, but I feel listening to someone I love reading a book extremely relaxing. It helps me draw attention to something entirely different than the physical ache in my body. It is also helpful if I am having a hard time falling asleep: calm voice and a nice book always help in that department.
Everybody likes to watch movies when they’re sick, right? Well, at least my cinephile of a boyfriend likes to do that, but he watches movies all the time anyways. If you usually don’t watch movies together, maybe try do it when they’re sick! It makes them feel like you really, really care: even though you can’t be there physically.
This is something you are only able to do depending on how far away you guys are and what kind of a situation you are in life, of course. Surprise visits are always highly appreciated. Especially when they get the cuddles they really desperately need in order to be healthy again!
We often text and call our partners, but completely neglect one fun way of staying in touch: email! Send them a rambly email, and tell them how much you appreciate them and care about them. It will make them really happy, and when one is happy, the sickness feels a little more manageable.
I don’t know if this needs to even be explained: show them that you understand how much it sucks to be sick. Because truly it does.
There really isn’t a better way to help someone than to ask. They know best what kind of gestures work for them, so go ahead and ask them. Ask them if there is something they can do even though you are miles apart: it could be something as simple as listening to them complain. Sometimes you haven’t even thought about what they’re proposing before. After all, we can’t read other people’s minds.
Whatever you do, do something that you know will cheer them up. Avoid conflicts and arguments—they only make the sickness feel that much worse. Distance really feels even more terrible when you have the time to ponder how much rather you’d be cuddling them than your pillow. Let sicknesses flow by, and let your LDR flourish even through them. And please, wash your hands and cough onto your arm! Let’s not spread those germs around.
I hope your November is fabulous and that you are as excited about the upcoming holidays as I am!
Anna is a bibliophile and soon-to-be English student originally from Finland but moving to Scotland in autumn 2016. Her movie-loving boyfriend lives in California, and they’ve been successfully dating since 2013.
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