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What Does a Healthy Long Distance Relationship Look Like?

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Long distance relationships can be complex and usually take time, effort, and practice to get right. A question many people have is what does a healthy one look like? Not literally, of course, but if you’ve ever wondered what should happen with a strong long-distance connection, you’re not alone.

Remember that everyone is different.

Just as you and your partner are different from your friends and family members, your relationship will also be different. A big mistake many people make is to look at someone else’s bond (sometimes from a romantic movie or worse, a soap opera!) and think that all romantic relationships should and must be like this. Of course, it’s nothing like it! Variety is the spice of life, so don’t think your connection has to look a certain way.

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Second, take stock of your relationship.

If you’re feeling happy, fulfilled, and whole, then chances are your connection is functioning and healthy! Therefore, a healthy relationship should look just like yours! And when you have friends who are in deep, fulfilling and heartfelt love, then healthy relationships should look like yours! Everyone will look different, but the defining traits are happiness and fulfillment!

Next, notice shared positives in other long-distance relationships.

I know a woman who was in a long distance relationship with her husband until they met to be married. They briefly knew each other casually, but the bulk of their relationship consisted of letters and later very expensive phone calls! When I asked her how her experience was, she said it was great because “we loved each other. I knew that he cared for me and wanted me to be happy and was willing to make sacrifices for it. I was the same way with him, and even though we were apart, we both knew how much the other cared.”

Just like in a normal environment, the same variables determine how healthy your relationship is. Are you interested in each other? Are you both willing to make sacrifices? Do you put the other person’s happiness and well-being ahead of your own? When you achieve these things, you likely have a strong connection. Who knows, maybe in the future you’ll be the people that others in a long-distance relationship look to to see if their bond is healthy!

But as always, don’t get upset if yours isn’t perfect right away. People often fall short of our expectations, but that doesn’t mean it’s the end of the world (or the end of your friendship). More important than the disappointments is whether your partner is willing to improve. If so, then you’re probably on your way to a healthy long-distance relationship.

Thanks to Nichole White

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