LDRs are a struggle. I think anyone who has ever been in one can agree with this. It is no walk in the park to have the person you love far away. It is miserable AF.
I was sucktastic at my shot at a long-distance relationship. I could not handle it. I found myself constantly obsessing over my partner’s actions, starved for attention, and subsequently engaging in a whole lot of self-destructive behavior to make up for the fact that I was sad. At 20 years old, I was self-centered and didn’t have the patience or commitment to go all-in for someone living 5,000 miles away.
Needless to say, that relationship did not work out. We wound up breaking up in a huge explosion of disaster and fire. It may have had something to do with the multiple other boyfriends I had while we were dating, but who knows?
Ah, to be young again.
Truth be told, no matter how much you love someone, a long-distance relationship may not work for you — even if you don’t have multiple other boyfriends like I did. Certain qualities and personality traits are solid indicators of whether or not you can hack an LDR.
Here are a few of the most important signs to look out for:
1. You need a lot of attention.
I’m not talking about being clingy and annoying. I’m talking about straight up needing a partner who can give you a lot of attention. For some us, this is just how we function in relationships. We need to have our partner around, adoring us and making us feel special all the time.
This is just not possible in an LDR. You cannot physically be with the person you love. For someone who needs a lot of attention, this is too much to handle. LDRs are extremely hard, to begin with. If you’re not a person who LOVES alone time and values your independence above all else, it’s not possible to make it work.
2. You’re not a great texter.
Long-distance relationships require making up for all that space between you with digital communication. For some people, texting just isn’t their thing. For the life of them, carrying a phone around, staring at their screens when they have a billion other things to do just doesn’t click in their brains.
If you’re in a long-distance relationship, you have to be a good communicator. You’re not able to see your partner in person, so if you’re not texting, calling, and FaceTiming, your relationship will likely fail. If you cannot make texting happen, you cannot make an LDR happen.
3. You have issues with trust.
The foundation of any relationship is trust, but this is particularly true of a long-distance romance. Both you and your partner will be out and about, without each other, running around meeting lots of different people.
If you’re not comfortable with your partner going out without you, hanging out with a bunch of new people, and making new friends —an LDR is probably not for you. If you spend many a night wondering what your partner is doing, who they are with, and whether or not they are cheating on you, you are going to drive yourself insane.
If you have any doubts at all about your partner’s trustworthiness, you can’t expect a relationship to survive a few hundred miles.
4. You act single when your partner isn’t around.
To piggyback on the point above, if you act like you’re single when your partner isn’t with you, this does not fare well for your relationship. I found in my previous LDR that not having my SO anywhere around felt an awful lot like being single again.
Harmless flirtations are usually OK, but when your partner lives in a different state or country, things have the potential to get complicated very quickly.
If you romp around town, flirting with every person you see, pretending you don’t have a SO, that is pretty disrespectful, TBH.
5. You’re always late.
A major thing you need in a partner when you’re long-distance is reliability. If you are a person who is perpetually 15 minutes late, steer clear of LDRs. With two completely different schedules and time zones, sticking to Skype dates is essential.
You only get a few times to talk each day; you have to honor those times. Otherwise, your partner is going to wind up feeling neglected, and you will fight.
6. Everything’s a fight.
When you have no chill, LDRs are not a good idea. Before you go saying, “Oh, this is definitely not me, I have a ton of chill — the most chill, actually.”
Ask yourself if that is really true. I know that I have NO chill. It’s fine. That’s just who I am. If you’re a person who finds themselves in a fight with their partner, just try adding distance to the mix. It is a recipe for disaster.
LDRs only work for people who are not only deeply committed to each other, but extremely independent and RELAXED about shit.