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 Post subject: the long-distance relationship support thread
PostPosted: Sun Aug 19, 2012 10:48 pm 
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Kale Wreath
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Location: Vancouver
I thought this could be a good space to commiserate, give/get advice etc. for those of us doing the LDR thing.

I'm not in one yet, but will be (for the first time) in less than a week and could definitely use some advice/support, since all I've heard about LDR's so far is that they're very difficult/impossible. We haven't been together for very long (3 months-ish) but have known/liked each other for a good 8 months prior, and are both committed to doing LDR. It will be for 8-10 months (while I finish my thesis at university). Unfortunately since we live so far away from each other and I'm a poor student with no travel money, the only chance that we will have to see each other during these 8-10 months will be in October when he comes to visit for a few days (if he can get the time off work), so that will be like 6 months without seeing each other in person at all. I know that lots of people do the LDR thing and see each other every couple of weeks or months, but is it crazy for me to think that we can make it work without physically seeing each other for 6 months?

I'm just nervous since I haven't done this before. I'd love to hear about everyone else's experiences! And I'll probably be back here to whine in a couple of weeks.

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 Post subject: Re: the long-distance relationship support thread
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2012 12:33 am 
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Venomous Head of Veganism
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Sext a lot, and have lots of video sex. The end.

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 Post subject: Re: the long-distance relationship support thread
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2012 12:37 am 
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http://www.erikamoen.com/2011/12/16/advice-long-distance-dating/

I've got no experience in this, but my friend J has been in one for about 2 years and said this is a really good chunk of advice. I'm sure it will be rough for those long months but I hope it's not too rough! good luck.

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 Post subject: Re: the long-distance relationship support thread
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2012 12:41 am 
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Asked Santa for a pony
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They can definitely work, but knowing that the distance is going to end is very helpful, so that's good for you! My current relationship started out long distance for 6 months and now we've been together 5 1/2 years and are getting married and all that. So don't let anyone tell you it can't work. It's really hard, but we got through it.

Good luck!

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 Post subject: Re: the long-distance relationship support thread
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2012 2:02 am 
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Level 7 Vegan
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Location: Hamburg, Germany
A big chunk of my relationship with Wally has been long distance. We met in Tokyo, moved away from each other 2 months into the relationship (each of us to a different end of Japan) and were long distance in Japan for 8 months. (Okay, the way that really happened is that even though we had a very fast, very intense connection these first few months and I thought it could work, Wally didn't want to do the long distance thing and broke up with me. Then about a month later we took a trip together (we were still in touch and close friends) where upon seeing me get off the night bus he broke into tears and said that being broken up was not working. So we got back together, because we knew for sure that no matter how sucky it is, long distance sucked less than not being together. The end!) Then I moved to France and he moved to the Netherlands to finish our respective degrees and we were long distance for another 18 months or so. We reunited by moving in together in Korea (where I got a job and Wally was writing his thesis at first).

During that time, we saw each other for a weekend every 2 weeks to one month. In Japan we mostly visited new cities together as we had money back then, in Europe we just spent time at each other's place.

Having a regular rhythm helped. Having an end date (graduation) definitely helped too. Don't let other people's opinions about LDRs get you down, and don't listen to their advice about what you must and mustn't do. The only things you must do is what works for your own relationship. Say, communication: different people are comfortable with different frequencies. If you need to talk every day and watch movies together on Skype, that's cool. If you prefer to go weeks without calls to focus on your own life, that's also cool. Not everyone does phone sex/camming. Not everyone does regular care packages.

It's odd to spend the beginning of your relationship apart, as it makes a lot of firsts weird. We had to make convoluted plans for our parents to meet, as we thought it would be weirder if we came back from Korea having been a couple for over 5 years and our families still didn't know each other. It also meant that when we finally moved in together, we had been ready for that step for... over a year? So it wasn't an exciting new step in our relationship, it was finally putting an end to a lot of frustrations.

AND after 2 years of unemployment in Korea, Wally found a job in Germany and moved basically immediately while I stayed behind to tie some loose ends. So we were long distance again for another 5 months without seeing each other at all. I have to say that that second bout was much harder. Maybe because we didn't see each other at all (and couldn't talk / text as often because of time difference), or maybe because we had gotten so used to living together and functioning as a team and it felt like suddenly big parts of my life were not functional anymore. Breaking up because of the distance was never on the table, but I wasn't dealing well. I'm not proud of it, but the truth is that I drank a lot. Also, I am NEVER doing an international move with a dog and two adults worth of crepe by myself ever again.


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 Post subject: Re: the long-distance relationship support thread
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2012 5:55 am 
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Dr Bronners, MD
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I am in Toronto and my husband is in California. We don't have a ton of extra money and flying back and forth is expensive so we don't see each other that often. We've only been doing this for ~6 weeks or so, so the tips in this thread (and that link) are really helpful to me as well. We have no idea when he will be moving to Toronto, whenever he can get a job here. He has a job in California so it doesn't make much sense for him to move here and be unemployed for a long time.

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 Post subject: Re: the long-distance relationship support thread
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2012 7:46 am 
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WRETCHED
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My husband and I started as long distance. We had worked together and were friends but he moved and we kept in contact. Then we became closer and decided to try dating. It was a different situation in that we really had to decide if we wanted the relationship to progress and one of us would have to move as a result. Since he had just moved away, we figured trying where he was living would be the best thing.

We talked on the phone and he did come to visit until I moved to be with him.

Anyway, I think LDRs can work as long as you eventually have a plan to resolve the distance. I had been in a previous LDR for a year but we (or I) didn't have a plan to resolve the distance. I think he was expecting me to move to be with him and I really didn't feel like moving. Of course then I swore off LDRs, fell in love with my husband who lived across the country and moved to be with him within 5 months of our dating.

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 Post subject: Re: the long-distance relationship support thread
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2012 7:51 am 
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Saggy Butt
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Location: Knoxville, TN
My relationship was long-distance for 3 years while I was in law school. We dated for about a year before I moved away. We've now been back in the same city (and home) for 6 years and we're still going strong!


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 Post subject: Re: the long-distance relationship support thread
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2012 8:19 am 
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I met my husband while LDRing someone else in his city. He and I were then LDR for six months before I moved. Almost all my relationships have been LDR because I always liked having my space. Having an end point really helped my husband while we were dating. I was already planning to move to where he lived once I finished school. It also helped me to get my shiitake together to make sure I followed through since someone was waiting for me. It was hard starting off a relationship with him LDR, we usually talked several short times a day and on IM. I think aelle has great advice!


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 Post subject: Re: the long-distance relationship support thread
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2012 9:01 am 
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I certainly agree on the sexting. also, sexy skype time.

My boyfriend spends large chunks of time (3+ months) working in Switzerland. I think spending a good deal of time being happy for them when they go out or are out having fun is very important. Also just sending a quick, "hope you have a great day!" sext or email.


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 Post subject: Re: the long-distance relationship support thread
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2012 10:50 am 
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Kale Wreath
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Location: Vancouver
Thanks you guys, that's really helpful so far!

Aelle, I was hoping you'd see this since I knew that you and Wally were doing distance for a long time. I didn't know your whole story, it's so cute!

All the successes give me hope. Keep 'em coming! I will be back with regular updates probably.

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 Post subject: Re: the long-distance relationship support thread
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2012 1:24 pm 
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Brain Made of Raw Seitan
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Posts: 1212
Location: Under a bridge
My boyfriend and I started dating when we lived in different cities (I happened to be visiting his city a lot when we first started up for reasons unrelated to his existence, but I was only really there once or twice a month, so it's not like we saw each other every day). That went on over a summer. Then I had to go really really really really far away for about four months for work, so we didn't see each other at all, but we kept in touch a lot via e-mail/phone. After that I said "why the hell not" and moved to his city and we started up for REALS. We've now been living together for a couple years, so I guess you could call that a success. Long-distance sucks, but if you already know it's only going to be for 10 months or whatever, it's worth a shot. It's important to keep in touch with your partner frequently, but it's also important to go out and maintain friendships with people you can actually see in-person because that's the best support you can get to keep you from getting crazy-lonely, and don't get jealous when your SO goes out and seeks new friendships, because they need human companionship too! And yeah, naughty video chats might not hurt either. :P


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 Post subject: Re: the long-distance relationship support thread
PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2012 12:46 am 
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Kale Wreath
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Location: Vancouver
Update: so we are now 3 weeks into it, I can't believe it's only been 3 weeks! It feels like much longer.

We have to schedule pretty much all our skype sessions, since there is such a big time difference. We've been talking almost every day though which is good. This week he was away for a few days on business and didn't have access to a computer and phone skype doesn't work so well so we messaged a bit instead, but I'll be really glad to see him when we skype tomorrow.

Unfortunately the getting time off work thing didn't work out so he isn't coming to visit next month after all. So that means 7.3 months left before seeing each other again. Woo! not. But still hanging in there :)

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 Post subject: Re: the long-distance relationship support thread
PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2012 4:46 am 
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Level 7 Vegan
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How are things going, PistachioRose? Hanging in there?


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 Post subject: Re: the long-distance relationship support thread
PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2012 2:01 am 
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Kale Wreath
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aelle wrote:
How are things going, PistachioRose? Hanging in there?
It's going well! Still have to schedule all of our skype dates because of time difference, but I think we've settled in to something comfortable - we usually talk every morning when I wake up (which is right before he goes to bed). My birthday was yesterday and he sent me a really sweet and thoughtful gift (which would probably sound boring to anyone I tell it to, but not to me). Also, I signed up for a 30-day yoga challenge that started last week and now he's trying to do it too in solidarity. Very cute. Of course I miss him a lot, but things feel pretty good right now. Thanks for asking!

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 Post subject: Re: the long-distance relationship support thread
PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2012 2:09 am 
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Vegan Since Before There Were Vegetables
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Location: Wolfville, Nova Scotia
I always feared that LDR-ing my relationship (with my current fiance) would break us up, but it truly made us stronger. I also feared that being together again after a time countries apart would mess up our dynamic, but that was also fine. This shiitake's surprisingly possible!


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 Post subject: Re: the long-distance relationship support thread
PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2012 5:21 am 
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Seagull of the PPK
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pistachiorose wrote:
things feel pretty good right now.

So glad to hear! i was wondering too and meaning to message you and ask how your move back had gone and then work and blah blah and now you've been back for a while!

I don't have overwhelmingly positive results in the LDR department although when my spouse and i married almost immediately we got posted to different cities ~5hrs apart for about a year, but it was nice and kind of sweet, since we were still so crazy about each other, and we already were spending a lot of time apart due to our work schedules and indiv travel needs. But it wasn't really long distance as we saw each other every weekend.

My other LDR was for about a year when I first went to Japan and my then fiance stayed in Florida doing his master's. It was not a successful relationship, let's say, but in terms of my own personal development I think it was critical. I learned I was cruel and a game-changer, but I also found that i like myself better that way compared to the person I was before. (but that is neither here nor there)

anyway, back to you- glad you're doing well!

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 Post subject: Re: the long-distance relationship support thread
PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 11:02 pm 
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Kale Wreath
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Just as an update, things are still going well over here!

Christmas Eve night is a cheesy couple's night in Japan and my boyfriend doesn't generally like that stuff, but he does have a bit of a sentimental streak in him, and he told me that it was around this time last year that he realized he liked me romantically. So we're going to have a skype date-night, and I said I'd think of something good for it. But I'm a bit stuck. Also, I'll be staying at my parents' that day so there will be a 13-hour time difference which makes things like "shared" meals a bit more difficult.

So experienced LDR people (or just creative people), do you have any ideas for a good skype date night that works over a significant time difference? I want to do something special and I think all my creativity is being directed toward my thesis at the moment...

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 Post subject: Re: the long-distance relationship support thread
PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 10:34 pm 
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Vegan Since Before There Were Vegetables
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pistachiorose wrote:
Just as an update, things are still going well over here!

Christmas Eve night is a cheesy couple's night in Japan and my boyfriend doesn't generally like that stuff, but he does have a bit of a sentimental streak in him, and he told me that it was around this time last year that he realized he liked me romantically. So we're going to have a skype date-night, and I said I'd think of something good for it. But I'm a bit stuck. Also, I'll be staying at my parents' that day so there will be a 13-hour time difference which makes things like "shared" meals a bit more difficult.

So experienced LDR people (or just creative people), do you have any ideas for a good skype date night that works over a significant time difference? I want to do something special and I think all my creativity is being directed toward my thesis at the moment...

You could maybe do something like make a cheesy gingerbread house or paper snowflakes "together"?

Glad to hear things are still going well!


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