The process of transitioning from high school to college was exciting as many of us might remember. Living on our own, (many for the first time without our parents), provided us the opportunity to grow on our own and solidify ourselves as individual people.

In order to do that, more often than not, we had to leave some people behind. This involved coming to terms that holding a long-distance relationship with a significant other from high school, was a doomed task.

Speaking from personal experience and from talking to people who have also been through such an event, long-distance relationships were seemingly forever left in a doubtful place. Despite this, I have found myself in a seven-month long long-distance relationship, and I would like to share some insight of the long-distance experience.

From simply comparing two different long-distance relationships, (one that barely lasted a month versus one that is still going), I have noticed a few key things that I have done differently that have led to a better experience overall.

The best thing to do in a long-distance relationship is to work together with your significant other to have dedicated time for each other. That might mean just a short-day recap, goodnight call at the end of the day or studying/working on homework in a call together.

Because of the nature of long distance, it is very easy to fall out of constant communication, which is also an extremally important thing to not do. Setting aside time in the day to involve each other in one another’s life, is critical. Obviously, everyone is different and may require different amounts of attention, so it should be discussed at the very beginning of the long-distance relationship, and an agreement must be met.

 This agreement should also include an understanding for each other. Honesty is truly the best policy. Being honest about how much time you wish to spend with your partner or how busy they will truly be is something that should be stated up front.

Another thing that is important, are small “date nights.” Your options are clearly extremally limited, but something like playing “Among Us” is not as silly as it sounds. It builds experience with each and with experiences comes bonds. Bonding in a relationship is the entire foundation of it, and if you are not creating, maintaining, or forging bonds, the entire thing may very easily go south.

Watch a movie together using Discord or playing a game together is just as important as just communication with each other.

Lastly, you must be realistic with the situation. It sounds grim, but you have got to realize the cards are stacked against you here and you have a way harder time maintaining a long-distance relationship then all other relationships. If you partner is that important to you, make it known, not just with words, but actions that go above and beyond the call of duty.

 This is a case-by-case scenario, and it is up to each person to do this. Things such as sending a care package, a card or any other sort of unexpected gift (physical, verbal or emotional) go long ways. If this person is that important to you as you believe they are, you have got to go out of your way to show appreciation, love and care for them.

There is no foolproof formula to maintain a long-distance relationship. Sometimes, unexpected or terrible things happen and ruin everything that you had going for you.

 Important things like communication and quality time are just a few more obvious that can help prevent this from happening. I am not perfect and am by no means, a master of relationships.

The future always lies in the unknown for these relationships. However, if you never try your best, you may never know what could have been. Do not be afraid to try it, if you really do love your partner.

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