Yes, it’s possible date long-distance without losing the spark OR your fucking mind

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Yes, it’s possible date long-distance without losing the spark OR your fucking mind

I mean, it is hard but not impossible

by Nian Hu

After going on what feels like thousands of disastrous dates, swiping left on every single person on Tinder, and dealing with fuckboys who send you unsolicited dick pics and 2 am "u up?" texts, you FINALLY meet the love of your life. This is the person you want to spend the rest of your life with, hands down. Everything is absolutely perfect, but there is one teeny tiny problem — your soulmate lives miles away from you.

Don't freak out just yet. Contrary to what your groupchat and sitcoms might tell you, a long distance relationship is definitely doable — and in fact, research shows that long distance dating is even better for keeping those romantic feelings alive. Here are just a few ways you can keep the spark going in your long distance relationship.

Plan activities for when your video calls so you don't end up falling asleep

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Thanks to Skype and FaceTime, it's easier than ever to keep in touch with the people you love! And who doesn't like looking into your partner's beautiful face and watching them occasionally freeze mid-laugh? Technical issues aside, the biggest problem with video calling is that it can easily become a mind-numbingly boring chore. Half the time, you find yourself sitting in silence and absent-mindedly saying "mmhm" while you both scroll through Facebook and wait for one of you to eventually say that they need to go to bed. Super romantic, right?

Make your video calls less lame by actually planning activities that you can do together. For example, you can make dinner together and watch each other chop up ingredients and sauté mushrooms. You can even experiment with cooking new dishes together — or order takeout, no judgement. And since you'd probably be watching your favorite shows anyway, why not stream them together at the same time. Everyone knows that the best part is seeing your partner's reaction and analyzing the episode together when it's over.

Send weird and/or sexy updates on Snapchat…fuck it, send the boring stuff too

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Look, romance isn't all watching To All the Boys I've Loved Before and cooking filet mignon together! Sure, the video calls are meant to simulate dates, but in real life you don't actually go on romantic outings with your significant other all that often. Half of dating is literally just experiencing mundane parts of life together — like the fat squirrel you pass by on your walk to work, the scrumptious bowl of ramen you have for lunch, and the fuzzy socks you put on when you get home.

These are the minuscule details that you probably won't bring up on your video calls — because let's be real, you probably completely forgot about them — but they help give your partner a look into your everyday life. And thanks to Snapchat, it's easier than ever to shoot over a quick photo or video of what's going on around you. Sure, that video of a rat scurrying out of a garbage can isn't exactly romantic per se, but it does let your partner feel like they're part of your life.

Send them letters and care packages for no reason

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Sure, you'll want to get them something nice for Christmas and their birthday — but you know what's even better? A totally random gift that will take them completely by surprise! Think about it. Part of the reason why online shopping is so amazing is because you place your order and then a few days later (by the time you've already forgotten about it) a beautiful package shows up at your door containing all sorts of amazing things. Now THAT is the best feeling in the world!

A surprise present is sure to bring a smile to your partner's face, but honestly it's super fun for you as well and it's the best way to keep them in your thoughts wherever you go. Whether you're on vacation with your family or aimlessly browsing Etsy at home, you can keep your eyes peeled for something that reminds you of your partner. Look, babe, I found this stuffed echidna when I was in Australia, and it reminded me of that time we binge-watched echidna videos on YouTube at 2 am!! You know that feeling when you find the perfect meme that literally describes your partner and then send it to them? It's like that, except a thousand times better.

Book trips to exotic destinations or cool new cities, instead of their boring hometown

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So obviously you're going to want to meet up with them in person at some point. Texting and Snapchatting is great and all, but nothing beats seeing them in person, feeling their skin against yours, and cuddling up against them at night. And the best way to make the waiting period easier is by planning fun trips in advance so you have something on your calendar to look forward to. Week by week, the anticipation grows. Two more weeks until we see each other again! One more week!

But if you're doing this distance thing for a while, visiting each other in your hometowns is going to get old REALLY fast — especially if one (or both) of you live in a tiny town in the middle of nowhere with absolutely nothing to do. So why not make this trip a little more exciting? If you're going to take a week off work to see your partner, you might as well make it worth your while and book a trip to France or Thailand. Exploring a new place together is seriously the best way to bond with your partner, and you can't tell me there's anything more romantic than having a picnic together next to the Eiffel Tower or lounging in an infinity pool in Phuket. And if an international vacation isn't feasible, even a road trip or a few nights camping in the mountains should be enough to give you the adventure of a lifetime.

Cherish your time apart

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This might sound counterintuitive, but at the end of the day, the best way to make your relationship strong is by making sure that YOU are happy with your own life. So that means going out and discovering what truly makes you happy, building your career, spending quality time with friends and family, and developing interests and hobbies that make you a better and more interesting person.

And you know what? This is why being in a long term relationship is actually the BEST! You get all the benefits of having a special and emotional attachment with another human being, and you get to be independent and live your own damn life however you please. You don't have to worry about getting in stupid fights about doing the dishes or being forced to go to their annoying friend's birthday party!

You can do whatever you want, hang out with whoever you want, leave your dirty dishes out for as long as you want — basically, all the perks of singledom without any of the crushing loneliness or existential despair. So honestly, consider this a blessing in disguise and cherish your time apart just as much as you cherish your time together.

@nian_hu

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