Loving Your
Long Distance Relationship

 
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Still Loving Your Long Distance Relationship

"I wanted to tell you how much I appreciated your book. Reading your book helped me feel better as well as give me hope. Thank you! "
- Toni, Alberta, Canada

    Contents

  1. Introduction- Stephen Blake
  2. Letters from the Heart
  3. Conclusion- Kimberli Bryan

Introduction

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 it?

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 way.

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 my life.

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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Conclusion

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 you.

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... forever.

- Kimberli Bryan, author of Loving Your Long Distance Relationship for Women


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