When you're in a long-distance relationship, the old cliché that absence makes the heart grow fonder can seem like a bit of a joke. When you spend so much time away from your partner, absence doesn't exactly sound like a good thing. But, there might actually be some advantages to an LDR.
"It forces you to communicate and get to know each other on a different level," says Lisa Vallejos, PhD, a professional counselor in Colorado. "The only connection you have is by communication, so it can foster a deeper sense of intimacy." Couples who live near each other might have a tendency to take their short distance for granted, she says, and can let intimacy and excitement fall by the wayside. LDRs, on the other hand, provide plenty of opportunity for spontaneity. "A lot of people who live long-distance feel their relationships have more energy, because you make the most of the time you have together," she says.
An LDR is also great for people who are busy outside of their relationships. Dr. Vallejos personally enjoys long-distance relationships because she's busy throughout the week anyway. "I’m not sitting at home playing the Titanic soundtrack and feeling lonely," she says.
Still, whether you've found yourself in an LDR out of necessity or because that type of relationship makes more sense for your life, it's no secret that you have to try harder to connect with your partner when they don't live nearby. It's not easy, and it doesn't always work. So, we talked with Dr. Vellejos and two other experts to find out the hallmarks of a healthy long-distance relationship. Read ahead for signs that your relationship is going to last.
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