Anyone who has ever been in a long distance relationship can agree: sometimes they are just plain horrible. Of course, they have their amazing moments, the ones no one would ever trade, but at times they are also gut-wrenchingly painful. Same city relationships have their hardships too, but they are different from the ones that long distance couples have to deal with. Even though the positives far outweigh the negatives and the love and time spent together make it all worth it, these are still the 10 worst things about being in an LDR:
1. No makeup loving after arguments.
Those moments when couples get down and dirty in the middle of a heated argument are not a possibility for long distance couples. Even after a drawn-out squabble which may last numerous phone calls and span the course of a couple of days, the most satisfaction an LDR couple can get is a simple, “I love you,” after it’s over.
2. You can’t help your significant other through crises.
If your loved one is going to school or working in a different city, they may have to cope with the stresses of exams, grades, performance reviews, and presentations. All of these tests carry with them the possibility of failure. It hurts knowing that your partner is going through a rough time and there’s not much you can do for them.
3. No hugs at the end of a long and stressful day.
Studies show that hugging on a daily basis releases stress-reducing oxytocin, boosts the immune system and battles depression. But what are you to do when your main squeeze is hours away? If you go from being able to see and hug your significant other every day to being far away, this obstacle is one of the hardest to deal with. Until you two can be reunited, seek out meaningful physical contact with friends, but make sure you don’t cross any boundaries.
4. Visits and travel are all very expensive.
Every long distance relationship has a different level of expense. The most expensive are international relationships because plane tickets and phone calls are much more costly than same-country LDRs. Even if you are in the same state as your beloved, you should be prepared to spend hundreds of dollars on every trip. The best way to get through this hurdle is to split the cost. If the person travelling pays for their transportation, the one being visited can pay for meals and activities.
5. When your partner accidentally falls asleep before calling you and you call them a bunch of times, but they aren’t answering and don’t know where they are.
It’s very easy to get paranoid, worried, scared and distrustful in a long distance relationship. When you don’t hear from your partner for a day and don’t receive a good-night phone call before bed, your mind begins conjuring the worst possible scenario. Two of the biggest fears of people in long distance relationships are that their partner has been seriously injured and there’s no way to find out, and that their partner is cheating on them. Neither of these thoughts is comforting as you’re lying there, trying to fall asleep. The most probable explanations are that your boyfriend or girlfriend is busy hanging out with friends and they forgot to check their phone, something happened to their phone (maybe it ran out of battery) or they accidentally fell asleep while watching TV or a movie. The reality is usually not as bad as what you imagine.
6. Seeing people in happy relationships all around you, holding hands and doing couple-related activities, making you miss your significant other even more.
This also happens to single people who want to be in a relationship, but it’s more difficult for people who are in a relationship because they can’t do these activities with the person they love. The best way to combat the feelings of jealousy, yearning and loneliness is to call your significant other and tell them how you feel. Talking to your loved one about how much you missed them today when you saw a couple playing air hockey will make you feel closer than if you keep your feelings pent up and as a result, resent the fact that they’re not around.
7. Not having someone with whom to go to certain events.
Your favorite band is coming to town or there’s a chocolate festival on Saturday, but all of your friends are busy or not interested. (If you can’t find a friend interested in a chocolate festival, you have a whole new set of problems on your hands). For many people, their significant other is their go-to person for many fun-filled events. When you are in a long distance relationship, you should either have a lot of friends with varied interests, become comfortable with going to events alone, or plan an action-packed weekend of activities you have always wanted to try for when your partner comes to visit.
8. You can’t just stop by their place after work or between classes or meet up at happy hour.
In same city relationships, it’s so much easier to see each other. This may be an unnecessarily obvious observation, but not being able to hang out for an hour or two when you have time may be one of the most difficult aspects of being in a long distance relationship. The spontaneous visits and excursions comprise a major part of same city relationships and help you reconnect throughout the week before date night. You can create a similar effect by calling each other at lunch or Skyping with a glass of wine while you watch the same TV show.
9. Romance means getting an unexpected phone call first thing in the morning.
It goes without saying that same city romance is easier than long distance romance. For LDRs, there is a lot more planning involved to execute a large romantic gesture, like a surprise visit. For the most part, romance in a long distance relationship means an unexpected phone call when you wake up or a sweet text message you receive on your way to work. That is the simplest way to be romantic. If you want to get more creative, you can have flowers sent to your significant other or mail them a hand-written letter. For extra points, make them a video they can watch when you can’t be together.
10. Having an argument over what was said in a text message, online chat or email because tone is impossible to convey through writing and sometimes causes misunderstandings.
At some point in a long distance relationship, couples will decide to refrain from using Facebook chat or text messages to communicate unless it’s absolutely necessary. That’s because, after the umpteenth argument that occurs because someone didn’t know you were joking, takes your joke seriously and gets offended, you learn your lesson. It’s nearly impossible to convey tone through a quick written exchange. You may read something and take it in a completely different way than was intended. This is a natural and common situation in this day and age when sentences are typed at lightning speed and rarely proofread before getting sent. Even smiley faces and punctuation are open to interpretation. Save yourself the trouble and call instead.
Originally published on Examiner.com.