Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Long-Distance Relationships: My Advice

Nowadays, LDR are now I think, a normal and more appreciated way of forming relationships with the person you love thanks to the easy forms of travelling and well, the main factor that is the internet. Dating apps and dating websites have replaced the traditional way of meeting someone when you're out and chatting to them in person instead of their cyber self on the phone.

So why am I writing about this on my blog? Well, my friend is going through a similar situation at the moment of being in a long-distance relationship and I thought writing down my experience and some advice for being in one could help her and anyone else who is involved in one. I asked her to ask me some questions I could address in this post.

But first, a bit of a background story to my relationship x

How did you meet the guy you're with?


My boyfriend and I have been together for over 3 years now and we've been in a long-distance relationship from day 1. We never thought we would be in a long-distance relationship with anyone, let alone each other because I will say, before I met George, I was the type of person who wouldn't seek a relationship as it was not a priority in life for me. I always felt that it would happen at the right time and for a good reason. And it did. 

We both support Wolverhampton Wanderers and during the build-up to the Brentford v Wolves game in February 2014, he started tweeting me and messaging me. I won't lie (and he knows this) I thought he was a bit of a stalker at first...but I saw his picture and thought hmm...he's quite alright ;) And so we got to talking about the game and later that weekend, we exchanged numbers and Skype usernames. That following Monday night, we Skyped for the first time and we talked about football more and we were coming up with jokey names for a team that we hate. (Rivalry in football is so important believe me). And well, long story short, we talked every day after that. The day we decided to be boyfriend and girlfriend, we had still yet to meet in person. We were at college and sixth form, 3-4 hours away from each other, I wasn't earning at that time and even though he was, coach and train fares were impossible to afford; so, the last game of the season was when we first met in person and that day has stuck with me since. I couldn't believe that this wonderful guy was mine to cuddle, hold hands with and kiss. I just knew on that day that I loved him and well, more than 3 years down the line and we have made sure our LDR works. A lot of people thought it wouldn't last and we both had our doubts ourselves, yet we've fought through the tears and struggles and we have such a strong relationship, it is honestly amazing. 

If any of you reading this are in LDR's then you will completely understand that the first day you see each other in person is one that stays with you forever. If any of you in LDR's are finding it difficult or are have recently committed to an LDR, here's some of my advice from personal experience which I hope will help you in your loving ways x




How do you regularly afford travel costs?

It was difficult at first to afford travel as I had to save up my pocket money or ask family if they could pay for my travel tickets and I would pay them when I was able to. At the start of the relationship, we only saw each other about once or twice between 4-6 weeks so I had the chance to save up. What really helped myself and George in the beginning was having a Young Persons coachcard from National Express, which saved us a third every time we travelled on the coaches to each other. It only costs £10 for 1 year for 16-26 year old's to have, so if you can travel to your partner's via a National Express coach, I would highly recommend purchasing this card. 

Since being a university student, I have been able to afford the travel costs more and since early last year, we have been commuting to each other's on the trainlines. It is annoying how trains are more expensive, but we both prefer the availability of travel times and it's much quicker than the coach. Again, we both invested in a 16-25 railcard provided by National Rail which also gives us a third off our train fare. This card costs £30 for 1 year but with the price of return train fares in this day and age, the card cost is covered with just 1 journey for me. 

My train fare costs just under £60 but I am lucky having my student finance and also working shifts at my local pub. I always make sure when we have planned to see each other that I set aside that travel money so I do not spend it. I understand that circumstances may be different in comparison to mine financially, so create a travel jar and stick the money in there. Even transferring money into your savings account so you know you have the travel fare is a great piece of advice I have learnt over the years. That is how I afford travel costs regularly: work, save and plan ahead financially so you know you are guaranteed to afford them.

How do you cope when you want to see each other in person but can't?




Communication. It has played such a huge role in my relationship thanks to the technology we have nowadays. (Gosh I sound old saying that.) In the beginning, we Skyped every night because it was the closest we got to seeing each other when we couldn't in person. Yeah, it sucked sometimes because when all I wanted to do with cuddle up to him, I couldn't. It was only my pillow I could cuddle... We FaceTime now though because he bought me an iPhone couple of Xmas's ago and I prefer FaceTime because the quality of camera is soooo much better than Skype. But whatever suits you the most, make sure you video call each other during the week because it makes it all worthwhile and lands you in such a joyous mood in the build-up to actually seeing each other again in person.

When I miss George, I text him. Even if he is at work, I message him asking how his day is going and what he's up to, tagging him on a lot of videos on Facebook (which he has already watched) to show I'm thinking of him. Keep a memory box of your time together to look through when you're feeling down. Scrolling through photos on your phone will help you cope because you're reflecting on the lovely moments you two have built together in your relationship and gets you to think ahead about what you have planned next.

Talk about the next time you have planned to meet up. Plan what you want to do each day, where you want to go for lunch, what you two want to watch at the cinema: even if it's planning what you want for breakfast, these factors help me cope when I can't see George when I want to.

Ooh another thing I do is when I'm feeling blue and want of cuddle off my boo, I wear one of his shirts of his hoodies he gave me. It's the closest I can get to a proper comfort cuddle of him but it makes me feel so relaxed that it's amazing how you feel so relaxed just from wearing a normal shirt, but knowing it was George's makes it extra special.




Does it get easier to cope with?

I would say that it depends on the circumstances of your LDR. The beginning is tough and no-one who is in a LDR can disagree with this. Speaking from experience, it has been easier to cope with. We see each other almost every weekend now thanks to us being able to afford the travel fares easily in comparison to the very start of our relationship. Even if we don't see each other every weekend, we always communicate every day and even if it's the smallest of conversations we have, it's good because we are thinking of each other. At this moment in time, I am used to the travelling and being 3 hours away from each other because when we FaceTime, it is like being in the same room: he's on FIFA and I'm either doing uni work or something else which is what we tend to do anyway when we're spending time together. I am glad we have battled through the tough times because in September, I am moving away for university and George will only be an hour away on the motorway which means we have a better chance of actually going for a cinema date in the week instead of always on the weekend! This really matters in a LDR and I really can't wait for that Tuesday cinema date or the Thursday movie night.



So, to answer the question: Does it get easier to cope
with? If you both love each other and are willing to push through the troubles, then yes it does get easier and it is worth the wait to see each other.

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I do apologise if my advice on this post has been terrible, but I am never one for giving out good advice...That being said, if this advice does help you in your LDR, then I will be very happy for you and your partner and what is waiting for you two in the future! x
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Are you currently in a LDR? Do you agree with what I have written on here? Please let me know what you think or ask any questions in the comments section down below. Also, if you want to speak to me directly about LDR or anything similar to this, please don't hesitate to contact me on my Twitter, Instagram, or my email: favictoriaanne@gmail.com

Until next time you wonderful readers...
Much Love
VA x