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Long Distance Relationship
Well, for starters, my boyfriend & I are still in a long distance relationship. He's in the Navy, currently deployed across seas. I'll be seeing him for the first time in 5 months. We've only been together 9-10 months. It's been incredibly rough. We met online, it was kind of hesitant at first because I had been there & done that, he on the other hand had not. But he wanted to. I, like a lot of others, didn't believe long distance relationships worked. After all, I had 2 before him. I had given up on trying the distant love! But Felix, talked me into it. It was a slow process that took us a few weeks before we moved in any direction. It was a month before we swapped phone numbers. It took initially a couple of weeks afterwards before we met. But when we did, it was definitely love at first site. After we said goodbye, I realized I never wanted to be away from him, but we had lives to live. I mean, he's in the Navy. They're constantly gone & I'm in college working on a degree in business, prepping for law school & raising a 3 yr. old from a previous relationship.
Being with Felix has been a learning experience. We've made this relationship work by trust, understanding, communication & incredible strength. You think having a signifcant other in another state is hard? Try having a long distance love who's in the military. That's an experience for ya! But the survival tip is knowing that you share a love so strong that even your closest friends can't talk you out of. I've had friends who all told me it's not gonna work because I can't physically be with him all the time. Well, I don't believe spending all your time with that person will make you love them even more. There's the life you share & your separate lives. Felix has never given me a reason to distrust him. I don't keep tabs on him, he doesn't keep any on me. We've basically survived the distance by mere love & trust.
Felix & I share a great distance. He lives in NY, but is stationed in Norfolk, VA. I live in a small town in Florida. Most of our relationship in the beginning was spent traveling from here to there just so we could be together. It was the hardest thing when we had to say good bye. I hated it. But at times, separation makes the heart grow fonder & stronger! The funny thing is, when I was dating the other guys I always said to them, "the only way I travel to you is if I'm gonna marry you!" I remember joking about it with Felix! Well, the weekend before I traveled to VA to be with him, I said you must be planning to marry me?! Little did I know! We aren't officially engaged yet because before he could do so he was deployed, but it's something that we're doing when he gets home. I graduate college in December this year & I'm moving to VA to spend the rest of my life with this incredible sailor aboard the Theodore Roosevelt. I won't sugar coat anything, yes, our relationship has been tried & tested more ways than one. We spent many nights on the phone wondering if we were making the right decision after all, it was rushed into. But because of this deployment, we've realized that if we can be apart this long & still be there emotionally for one another, then we can get through anything.
I have to say, there were times when I thought I'd go out of my mind. He'd be out with friends & I'd be stuck here home alone. I'd wonder what if he's tempted or what if that. But when you love a person so much, you're gonna give them the benefit of the doubt. I've been given so many compliments on my strength while he's gone. He constantly tells me that he appreciates the support I've shown, the letters I send & the emails. The way we communicate every night is this: Before I go to bed, I email him a poem that I wrote especially for him. Or I write down song lyrics that symbolize our love s he can read them when he checks his email. I've sent him little reminders through the mail. Everything that will make a man stop & think, ok, if she's doing this now then she really wants to make this work. Recently I found that he's been sleeping with a picture of me at night. Every port they go to, he calls & our conversations are usually 10 minutes or less, but he calls to say I love you, I miss you & thank you. On Mother's Day, he called & told me Happy Mother's Day & that he loves me. . .that was our conversation for the day!
So there are many things that help you survive in a long distance relationship. If you believe in it, it will work for you! The one thing to remember is that distance, great or small, can be a challenge. You just put your heart into it. I'm only 20, I'll be 21 this year & Felix is 23, he is the one I want to share my life with. When you have that, don't let anyone destroy it for you. And, don't follow the "you need to be with him to have that physical thing to have a real relationship." A relationship is when 2 people love one another, want to be together, commit & make it work through good & bad.
Even local relationships suffer from the same problems we do. You know what else, the best part about a long distance relationsip is that when there's an argument, you have that cool down period away from one another. No slamming doors! The best advice is to love one another whether far or near.
Portia, Florida, USA
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Essential Tips for
Use thoughtful gifts to stay connected
Communicate as often as possible
Try to see one another at least every 4 weeks
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