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*After* a Long Distance Relationship

My boyfriend and I have been dating for 7 years.  We started dating in senior year of high school and we went to separate colleges and we traded off visiting each other ever other weekend.  After 4 years of college, we have been living together for 2+ years now.  I just started a new job that requires me to travel a lot, and I am having a hard time with the travel.  I hate being apart from my boyfriend so often, and I can't help feeling like I did my time already and we should not have to be apart anymore.  It didn't bother me as much before work, when it was just spending a little time apart when necessary to visit family or friends (my boyfriend is in his last year of law school so sometimes I would have some free time when he was busy and I would use it to visit).  I know that some of what I am feeling is that traveling for work is hard and sometimes scary, but what bothers me the most is when I part from my boyfriend right before a trip, I remember watching him drive away from my dorm, weekend after weekend for 4 years.  I had great friends in college and I had a great experience there, but I remember how painful it was to be apart, even when we could talk on the phone every night.   I get a fear that we will have to go back to being apart and only seeing each other for a short, homework-filled Saturday.

 Has anyone else who spent time in a long distance relationship and has since been living together experienced this?  I looked online and I couldn't find anyone else who talked about what it was like *after* a successful long-distance relationship.  Has anyone found anything that helps put their travel back into perspective?  Even just hearing that other people have felt scars from being in a long-distance relationship (even a great one) would help me.

Re: *After* a Long Distance Relationship

  • I am currently in a successful LDR. Yes, there are times of trial and hardship, but it's worth the troubles when you find that love you can't live without. It almost seems like a blessing for me that you posted this as well. I feel people just always want to be negative on these boards and especially about LDR. 

     You keep your head up! Just think when you have to go to work that you are doing this for ya'lls future.(ya'll - Hey, I'm from the South!) ( I'm sure there will be a future with this guy, right?) You have to make sure you get what you want for you done for you while you are young and able, but just make sure you don't over look his feelings because of it. My bf can do that sometimes. LOVE him but he is just young and trying to get ahead in life while he can. He has good intentions but we just have to remember our feelings too. We have to make sure we keep the relationship in check. We just have to be there for each other because we are all we have for each other :) We try to live our own lives but always remember what's important to us... which is just that, US!

      Sending you the best! 

  • Yes, H and I feel the way you do. We did our time of 4 years long distance. Have been together for 11 years now and are happily married. You go through so much being together for so long and then add long distance into the mix makes you so much stronger in a way. 

    H tends to stay home and I have traveled alone for different lengths of time, a day to a couple weeks, for various reasons. Every time H has had to travel for work I have been able to go with him. Being away from each thee is hard. Even a normal work day gets to us. People wonder how we can miss someone we just saw a couple hours ago. It's easy because seperation still feels more like a permanent thing even though we know being at work is only temporary.

    It's gotten easier for us over time. On the day to day seperation. When I travel H neither of us sleep well, if at all. H tends not to eat well when I'm gone. When we are apart overnight we found ways to help make it easier for us. And being apart at night gets easier with time too. 

    I'm on my phone so I hope that made sense. If not Ill get on the computer when I can and try to explain things better.  

  • Your relationship sounds a lot like mine and i have that same problem now.. also after 2 years of living together. Any time apart feels like an eternity and being away for even just a weekend to visit family can be really hard for us. It all comes back to me and it scares me to think of ever having to go through something like that again.. I can't tell you much about your situation with this potential job but if you guys were able to go through it once i'm sure you can do it again. Sometimes we need to make sacrifices but they are always for the best. Best of luck to you! 
  • DH and I have been together almost 5 years.  The first 2 years of our relationship were long distance (I was in school, he was working full time) and we saw each other maybe every other weekend depending on my work schedule and family commitments.  We bought a house and moved in together the fall of 2009.

    Two summers ago (summer of 11) I spent in Virginia (the state, not the town in MN) and being half a country away from my then FI now DH scared me to death!  I had to really think about whether or not I wanted to be that far away.  In the end, we ended up reconnecting with each other because of the distance.  We wrote emails and talked every night (which helps).  I got to come home for 1 week in August, then was actually back in Virginia until October (so roughly gone from mid-late May to early October).  Yes it sucked, yes it was hard, but I wouldn't change it because that summer apart made us realize how much we truly loved and appreciated each other, and literally the day after I got back my DH proposed to me.

    After I got back from VA we told ourselves that we would never part like that again.  Well fate intervened and this past summer (summer of 12) I was working and living 1.5 hours away from my then FI now DH.  I worked 24/7 literally for an elderly lady.  Lucky for us, the lady didn't mind DH coming to visit and spending the night (nor did her family mind I should add).  I spent all my time off with him, but it was still really hard to be apart.  Again though, this distance made us stronger as a couple because we were forced to communicate and that helped us. My summer job ended approx 2 weeks before our wedding, but even though my job had ended I still didn't move back "home", I stayed at my parents' house and did all the last minute wedding planning. 


    So to sum up and answer your question "Has anyone found anything that helps put their travel back into perspective?": the communication that we always find a way to do really helps us, our trust in each other increases as well as the amount of support we have for each other.  In our case the old saying "distance makes the heart grow fonder" really truly was the way it worked for us.  Yes it is painful and yes I cried a lot (especially in Virginia), but I knew that me being away was helping us work towards our future together and that helped justify the 2nd and 3rd sections of "long distance" in our relationship.

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  • Saraschill, mentioned something very important that my morning brain and phone nesting couldn't comunicate and didn't think of mentioning. Sara pointed out that being away made their communication better. That's how it worked for us too. Our communication skill are great. We learned and worked hard to make it work long distance and that, for us, made it easy to live together. 


  • My FI and I are currently in a very long distance relationship, and we only get to see each other every few months. It has always been very difficult for me, but we love each other a lot, and with trust and FaceTime we are able to make it last. This has been going on since 2009.

    Last October I went to live in the UK with him for 4 months...the longest time we have been together. It was amazing, and leaving him was extremely hard, but I had to put faith in our future and just handle it.

    Whenever I see him it is in two week or less stints, and when its time to head back to the airport I get extremely emotional, as does he.

    I have learned, though, that it basically comes down to strength of mind. I know I will see him again, I know he is devoted to me, and I know we get to talk to each other every day.

    Just be strong! I think relationships that have gone through this test and made it are some of the strongest of them all!

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  • Man, you guys are making me really feel like the odd ball out. My H and I were in a LDR for 2 1/2 years in college. We also saw each other just about every other weekend, like you guys. We've now been living together for about 3 years. It's pretty rare that one of us has to travel without the other, but when I first started my current job I had to go out of town for about a week, and honestly it was NBD. Of course, I did miss him and was looking forward to seeing him again by the end of it, but it was kind of nice to have 24/7 me time (minus the awful class that I was attending every day).

    Did anything hurtful ever happen during your previous distance? I'm not trying to be presumptuous, just curious. Because for me, the distance in college wasn't too bad either. Again, I did miss him, but I loved having the weekends to look forward to, and I enjoyed having such a good mix of BF and friend time.

    So, maybe it just really depends on your tolerence for separation. Most people probably have a low tolerance for it, but I'm just the crazy person who has a higher tolerence for it? :)

  • We were long distance my senior year of college.  I was adamant about never doing that again, so much so, I wanted to write it into our wedding vows.  DH said, "never say never" and ultimately we promised "together or apart" instead.  Since graduation we have carefully budgeted to live on one income so that we would never ever NEED to live apart again. On our 6th anniversary, I took a job that had me traveling almost every single week for 15 months.  We've just gotten to the end of that, and I'm now traveling "only" one week a month.  

    It was rough, but really not so bad as I expected.  Since work pays for my travel, there wasn't the financial burden of each visit the way we had in college.  Long distance phone calls are free now, but weren't when we were in college.  There was no anxiety about where our relationship was going the way there was for us in college.  The hardest part was really the extra 10-13 hours/week I spent flying, at the airport, and getting to and from the airport, and the grueling schedule involved (up at 3:30 AM Mondays, home at around 11pm-midnight Thursdays, with 40 hours of work in between). It was so physically demanding I didn't get my period the first 3 months, which increased my anxiety 10-fold... I mean, we want to have a baby soon-ish, but obviously it would have prevented me from fulfilling my contract if it had happened right then, and the firm I am with is too small for the FMLA to apply to. 

    It's been kind of amazing to me that even though I go much further away, it is so much easier now than it was before.  Again, a lot of that is the money factor, and also that I am at a point in my career where I can demand a 4/10 working schedule, where as before I was in school with no transportation, and DH was working graveyard shift 5 nights/week with no flexibility at all and renting a room in somebody's house where he couldn't have overnight guests anyway (San Francisco Bay Area, and that was really all he could afford at the time, especially after paying for gas to visit me in LA 2x/month).  Which isn't to say I didn't want to cry every morning I got on the train to go to the airport in the wee hours of the morning... but we have a goal in mind and that has helped keep us motivated.  Hopefully one day soon it will be ours...  


  • image erollis:

    It's gotten easier for us over time. On the day to day seperation. When I travel H neither of us sleep well, if at all. H tends not to eat well when I'm gone. When we are apart overnight we found ways to help make it easier for us. And being apart at night gets easier with time too. 



    image AyaniNoemi:
    Any time apart feels like an eternity and being away for even just a weekend to visit family can be really hard for us. It all comes back to me and it scares me to think of ever having to go through something like that again.


    That is definitely how I feel!  Thanks everyone!  Right before l leave, even if it is just for a weekend, I get anxious and start remembering how much it sucked to be away for college.  How do I remind myself that I am not going to have to do another four years of once a month visits?  And how do I get over feeling mad that anyone would expect me to be away for any amount of time after how much separation we had to deal with?  Once I am traveling I handle everything better, it's before I leave that I start remembering how much it sucked at the start of every semester.  I really like my new job and I understand that I have to travel some, I just need help remembering that we are done college and I won't be away that long.


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