Her Version: Surviving the Distance

Living apart from your significant other isn't always easy. There are many obstacles that you need to overcome as a pair in order to have a lasting relationship. It tests your limits with each other because you need to develop a deeper sense of trust with each other. It takes away the entire physical aspect of your partner, allowing you to really get to know who they are as a person and pick at their every thought. Being in a long distance relationship isn't for the feint of heart. It requires a lot of team work, communication, and understanding to be together, even when you're living miles apart.

  Even though there are definitely some difficulties with being in a long distance relationship, remaining open minded and looking toward the positive side has always helped me get through it. Michael and I have brainstormed on what the top five things we do for or with each other to keep our relationship healthy.

Open and honest communication.

There is nothing that can kill a relationship faster than not being open and honest with each other. Michael and I have had our struggles in the beginning with communication. I've learned a great deal from Michael when it comes to being more patient. You have to make sure that your partner isn't on the other side of the world worrying about your safety, or whatever it is you're doing. Being thousands of miles apart always leaves room for uncertainty, and it's in your best interest to make sure your partner has nothing to ever worry about. If there's something that is bothering you, then you have to make sure you express that to your partner so they know. A talk that you should consider having is a talk about how you best communicate. Michael and I have had to talk about how we best communicate with each other, and it's helped us when we've found ourselves in the heat of our small arguments. Knowing how your partner is when they're upset, and how you can best help them through it is very important. Being apart makes it easy to push it off and ignore each other, which doesn't solve anything.

Understanding that each of you still need to grow.

The upside of living apart from your partner in your younger adult years is that you have room to grow into your own person. Your partner isn't there for you to rely on every day, so it forces you to be independent. Your young adult years are where you should be finding out who you are as a person, so make sure that you utilize this time appropriately. You can build a better you, so when the time comes that you and your special person can live together, then you've got a solid foundation for yourself, and you two can continue to build together. It gets hard because during your young adult years, you grow and change fairly quickly. You learn what you do and do not like in a person. So this goes back to open communication. Learn about each other daily, and motivate each other to be the best you two can be. That's what #relationshipgoals should be.

Picking up a hobby to help pass the time.

Let's face it, you've gotten really good at knowing how to do time conversions for that special place in the world. When you're just waking up, your partner is going to bed. Well, that's the case for Michael and I. Maybe you're lucky enough to only be a few hours ahead of your partner, but it still doesn't help pass the time. Blogging is how I'm helping pass my time, which is why I want my blog to be successful! Other ideas to pass the time include working out, joining a club or a sports league, cooking, or my favorite, traveling! Anything you do that takes your mind off of your significant other being away will work. And this works out great because you'll always have something new to talk to them about!

Making sure they know they're a priority.

The hardest thing about long distance is making sure that your partner knows that they're a priority in your life. I've seen relationships that were strong when couples were together, but fell apart when they became long distance because either one or both partners didn't prioritize each other. You have to make sure that they know that even though they're the furthest away from you, they're still the closest one to your heart. Your partner is emotionally invested in your every word, because that's what your relationship is built on. It is not built on the physical aspect of seeing their beautiful face every day, it's built on the small things, like phone calls, texts, and letters. Showing them that they are important to you is the one thing that will keep your relationship soaring.

Showing that you care with letters and care packages.

And finally, the material part of the relationship! Michael and I are big on letters and care packages. When Michael was deployed, we were very adamant about our letters to each other. Receiving something in the mail is always a great feeling. It shows that you decided to take the time to go through the hassle of sending something, even if it's just a letter. This is time that you invest in your relationship, which says more than just a simple text hello or phone call. It's also an unbeatable feeling when you receive something that you know came packed with love by your partner's hands. But remember, the best care packages are the ones where you deliver yourself!

  Of all the things that Michael and I do to keep our relationship exciting and healthy, these are the top five ways him and I have been able to get through the distance. What are some other things that you've done with your partner to help you stay close?