Edwin Molina is a senior at Northern Arizona University with a major in English and will be graduating with a certificate in Literature studies. Edwin is passionate about helping others through his writing and enjoys watching films and reading novels.
According to T.V shows and movies, long-distance relationships are doomed. Remember when Ted from How I Met Your Mother had that girlfriend in Germany and it lasted for about three episodes? Or when Jess’s boyfriend from New Girl left to England and it literally lasted an episode before they broke up? When two people see these stories on the big or small screen it makes them think that their long-distance relationship won’t last, but it can be done. There are countless amount of articles on the Internet that give advice on how to make a long-distance relationship work. Instead of telling you how to do it, I’m going to tell you why to do it.
My girlfriend and I have been dating since our senior year in high school, and we are about to graduate college. That means four years mostly spent apart from each other. Was it easy? No way! Was it worth it? Yes, and I would even go as far to say that I learned more about myself in the process. Some of the learning advantages that come with being in a long distance relationship are:
• You will learn the meaning of patience. There is nothing better to teach patience than going months at a time being away from each other. It’s pretty much like waiting for your food at a restaurant for five months, and the closer it gets, the more anxious you become. There will also definitely be times when some of your friends complain about not seeing their significant other for a few days or even a whole entire week, but you will feel good about yourself knowing that you can spend a month or two away from your significant other and still be stronger than most other couples
• After your college friends find out that you are in a long-distance relationship, you automatically become the dating guru and will always be asked for relationship advice. Are you really the master of dating? Probably not, but if you can keep a long-distance relationship healthy, you probably know a thing or two about “short-distance relationships.”
• You will learn to truly cherish time with your significant other. When you finally get to see your significant other, you suddenly get reminded of all the reasons you decided to try and make things work. Whether it be a certain look, smile, or anything about their personality that makes you two click. If you are spending months at a time away from each other, the time you have allotted with each other suddenly becomes the best time you had since you were away.
• you learn the art of “creative dating”. Since you two can’t physically be together, this becomes a staple in your relationship. “Creative dating” is coming up with inventive ways to show your boyfriend/girlfriend that you care about them. One way to do this is to send a letter. This shows your significant other that you took the time to creatively show your affection. Since you aren’t physically there to surprise them with little gifts/gestures, this is a great alternative. Bonus points if you add in a souvenir from the location you are currently going to school.
• You learn to trust one another so much that you would be willing to do trust falls all day with your boyfriend/girlfriend. This sounds a little ridiculous but it’s definitely true. Being apart for hundreds of miles is a very scary thing if you think about it. You’re so far away from your loved one and you two are going to be doing many activities without one another. Trusting them is one skill that is both necessary and useful. This may take some time to get used to but once that trust is established your relationship is automatically stronger than before. Once you know that your significant other is there for the long haul and you are able to trust that they won’t lie or be disloyal, trust falls will look like a cakewalk.
• You develop an independent identity. Being in college is all about finding yourself. If you happen to find yourself in a long-distance relationship, this can be great! You are able to stay in a committed relationship while going out and having a great time with friends. Your relationship should never be restricting. If you ever feel like you are missing out on an adventure that your friends are having because you are stuck on the phone or video chatting, stop what you are doing and go have fun! Don’t get me wrong, making time for these things is definitely essential in any long-distance relationship, but it should never be something that consistently gets in the way of your college experience. In fact, your long-distance relationship should be enhancing it! You are only in college once, so make it count by creating a healthy balance between your relationship and your college experiences. How many people can graduate from college and say that they were in a long-distance relationship throughout the years spent there