Do long-distance relationships
work? Without a doubt, this has been the question I've been
most commonly asked since I published Loving
Your Long-Distance Relationship over a year ago. Whether the
question is posed by a skeptic trying to prove that
long-distance relationships do not work, or by a young couple
who find themselves separated by circumstance, people seem
intensely interested in whether any LDR has a hope of lasting in
today's society. After all, doesn't absence automatically mean
the end of a relationship? Doesn't everyone grow apart
eventually? What about loneliness? Won't someone eventually
cheat or lose interest in the other? It's inevitable! Or is
I admit, when I first started writing my book, I
too was skeptical about long-distance relationships. At the
time, I had already been through two that ended up in
partings. I had also witnessed numerous friends who tried and
failed in similar circumstances. Everything seemed fine until
distance entered into the relationship. It wasn't until I
published Loving and started getting letters from people across
the world in the same situation, that I realized my skepticism
was ill-founded, and true love always seems to find a
Since the release of Loving, I have received
literally thousands of letters and e-mail from people who
have conquered distance in their relationship and now
live happily ever after. Whereas I expected accounts of
how individuals had experienced a break-up of their
relationship, I received stories of couples physical separation
only served to strengthen their resolve and love for
one another. Letter after letter was a testament to love and
to the human spirit, reaffirming that LDRs can and do work.
Although all agreed that their situation was difficult at times,
true love seemed to triumph in the end. Relationships built on
solid foundations such as trust, love, and commitment could not,
and would not, be shaken by mere absence.
The following pages are a collection of some of my
favorite stories that I have received throughout the last two
years from my readers and also from those just wanting to
share their feelings about their relationship. They have been
my inspiration and connection to people who refused to
let distance devalue their relationship. They have made
writing Loving Your Long-Distance Relationship one of the most
special and rewarding things that I have ever done in
Whether you are entering into a long-distance
relationship, in one presently, or supporting someone who is
facing being apart from a loved one, I hope you find these
letters as inspiring as I have. I hope they make you feel that
there are others like you across the world who have faced the
same challenge and won. I hope they instill in you the belief
that love transcends geography. Finally, I hope these
stories how that it is relationships that make life special,
and that ones built on love & understanding are always
worth preserving, regardless of the miles that may separate
the two people.
- Stephen Blake
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Preparing these letters for
publication has been a touching experience for me. It's brought
back a flood of memories from the time when my husband, Gary,
and I were living in different states, wildly in love, and
wanting nothing more than to be together every moment. As I
began to write this, I realized that everything I wanted to say
I had said before, when I wrote our marriage vows. No one who
heard these words the day we were married understood what they
truly meant as well as you will if you're missing your love.
They represented for us the end of a painful journey. My wish is
that they give you hope on yours.
Love, true love, is a force of nature, unequalled.
It's both wonderful and terrible, the best and worst thing that
can happen to any of us. And happen is exactly what it does...
like hurricanes happen. There you are, happily living your
well-planned life, with your future neatly mapped out and
everything moving along just as you think it should. Then, on
a perfectly ordinary day, you meet someone and your
heart stops beating, and suddenly everything you thought you
wanted out of life is meaningless unless that person is with
Your life has changed forever. No matter how happy
you thought you were, you can never go back to the way things
were before your heart stopped, before you knew it was possible
to feel so much for some one. And that's when it can be terrible.
Sometimes there are compelling reasons to walk away from
That person. Sometimes circumstances dictate that walking away
Is the only sane thing to do. And you might try to do that.
You might try a thousand times and still fail, because it's a
Lot like deciding not to breathe anymore. And if you do
Manage to walk away, you soon realize that you're just a hollow
shell of the person you were, because living without your heart
isn't much like living.
So you just move heaven and earth to be together
with the person who holds your heart. There's no limit to the
amount of emotional pain that two people in love can endure in
the hope that someday they'll be together.
You survive the terrible by living and reliving,
a thousand times over in your mind, the incomparable wonder
of the moments you spend together. When that person walks into
the room and angels sing and stars fall and your heart
stops beating, again... every time. When one hug can make up
for a hundred hours of loneliness, and a smile makes you
cry because it's so beautiful. You know that no matter how
bad it gets, as soon as you're together again, a single kiss
will make the world a wonderful place to be.
And you know, that as hard as it was, you'd go
through hit all again, if it would get you here, standing in front
of your family and friends, promising to love each other...
- Kimberli Bryan, author of Loving Your Long
Distance Relationship for Women
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