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Coping with distance

PopicesPopices Registered User regular
edited August 2007 in Help / Advice Forum
Hey all, just got home from moving my girlfriend into college and i realized just how painful this ordeal will be.

I am 20 years old an a junior at a local college, and she is 18 just starting school about four hours away. We have been dating for nearly six years and this is our first extended long-distance outing and I am not sure how to deal with it. She plans on coming home three times a semester, so I guess I can look forward to that, but it seems like it is going to be very difficult to maintain as healthy a relationship as we once had. We are both committed to staying with one another and she is not much of a party-goer so I don't think I have much to worry about. We are both gamers so she will probably fit in well at the technical school, but aside from a few select friends I do not have many people to turn to while school is in session (many friends moved out of state for school). Is the usual phone/AIM conversation with an occasional package sent through the mail about all I can do?

Suggestions as to how to keep this relationship live and well are more than welcome and will be appreciated.

Popices on

Posts

  • LewishamLewisham Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Do you have a car?

    My gf and I had a long distance relationship (as in 10 hours flight away) for a year. 4 hours is what I would call a medium distance relationship... you are within a realistic distance to drive out on a Friday evening and spend the weekend together. Do this if you can.

    We called each other every day (thank God for Skype). However, when you can fill the void with actual personal contact, calling every day might be a bit much. What's the foreseeable future? She does this for another 4 years? You graduate in two and go and live with her? You need a goal; if you have no target to hit the grind will get pretty unbearable as you won't feel like the relationship is going anywhere but down.

    Having a target was the only way I managed to get through it.

    Lewisham on
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Long distance sucks. My wife and I live two hours apart during the school year (and the raw distance makes commuting unreasonable), so we only see each other on weekends.

    I don't know, though...four hours isn't that far. If three times a semester is the best you two can do, I'd suggest reconsidering just how serious you guys are. Because there are going to be a lot of temptations for both of you. I know a lot of kids up here that drive 3-4 hours home every other weekend (or more). I know you heading that way would be hard (without a reliable place to stay...I assume she's in a dorm with a roommate), but still.

    Good luck, though. Just realize that college kills a fair portion of high-school relationships, and that distance just ups that number. Keep in mind (and she should too) that you will not be the same guy that you were at 15 when you finish college, nor will she be the same girl she was at 13. The chances of this relationship going the distance are low.

    mcdermott on
  • SteevLSteevL What can I do for you? Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    I agree with trying to visit her when you get the chance. My girlfriend (also of 6 years) just moved 4 hours away too. I visited her for the first time this weekend, and I intend on doing it once every two weeks. I also got a pair of webcams and we've started talking to each other over Skype. So far, so good. I'm thinking that online games might be a fun thing to do as well.

    SteevL on
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Yeah, webcams are a good thing. My wife and I used the shit out of them when we had to spend a year across the world from each other.

    mcdermott on
  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    If you spent the time working a part-time job that you'd spend just driving to see your girlfriend for the weekend, you'd be pulling in an extra $60 a week (to say nothing of the amount gas will end up costing you). As far as I'm concerned, that's fucking long-distance.

    Thanatos on
  • LewishamLewisham Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Would you rather we called 4 hours long distance, and then 10 hours+ ultra-long distance? Hyper distance?

    I would have paid $60 +fuel again and again and again to have seen my girlfriend in person once a month.

    Lewisham on
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Lewisham wrote: »
    Would you rather we called 4 hours long distance, and then 10 hours+ ultra-long distance? Hyper distance?

    I would have paid $60 +fuel again and again and again to have seen my girlfriend in person once a month.

    It costs me like $35 bucks a week to drive home on weekends. It sucks.

    And yeah, I'd say four hours is long distance. But, Lewisham said, it's also a doable weekend trip...so if between the two of them once a month is the most they can manage? *shrug*

    mcdermott on
  • witch_iewitch_ie Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    I recommend setting aside some time together each week for the both of you to spend together talking, gaming, or even studying together while on the phone if you have plans that will allow it. Be flexible with this time so that you can both have a life outside of the long distance relationship. In addition to the longer talking/gaming time, also set aside a checkpoint once a week just to see how each other are doing. With those in place and ad hoc conversations as you need them, you can still have a meaningful relationship.

    Also a target end date is a must. It will help both of you to think of it when the going gets rough and you feel like you can't take it anymore. If you don't have a plan yet, don't worry about it. Just be on the same page about when the long distance part will end and be ready to work together to make that happen.

    witch_ie on
  • PopicesPopices Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Thanks for the advice guys.

    Yes, I have a car but I am a pharmacy student which means I will spend a good chunk of my free time studying, and on fridays I have class until 6pm (meaning I won't be able to get up there until 1130ish). Also, with her being a freshman she is not allowed to have her car on campus. I will most definitely pursue the webcam route, it is something I hadn't thought of before. If anyone has any additional suggestions feel free to add them. Thanks guys, it is appreciated.

    Popices on
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