People often ask me how to make a long-distance relationship work. The three most important factors are optimism, communication, and trust.
“Optimism” might seem like a strange one to have on the list, but it really is right up there with communication and trust. And that’s not to say that cynical, sarcastic people can’t have a successful LDR—but you at least need to have a positive attitude about the relationship itself, and have faith that the two of you will stay connected even though you’re far apart.
And by “communication,” I don’t mean that you have to be an expert speaker. Introverts can be just as happy in their relationships as extroverts. I simply mean that you and your partner have to find a way of reaching out to each other in a way—whether it’s chatting on the phone twice a day or sending a letter twice a month—that allows you to support each other, share with each other, and strengthen your bond.
“Trust” might sound pretty straightforward. But I don’t just mean trusting your partner’s ability to remain faithful to you while you’re separated. I also mean trusting your partner to remain invested in the relationship even when you have to go a long time without seeing each other. Trusting each other to bring up concerns before they become problems. Trusting each other, basically, to try.
However often you visit, however often you call, however you choose to arrange the terms of your relationship…if you have optimism, communication, and trust, all the rest will fall into place.