How many times have you heard a story about a solo female traveler who either took the leap to explore the world or went on their first vacation and fell in love? The whirlwind romantic relationship; getting swept up in the city, accents and new experiences. A year or less later, the girl is home or nowhere near the new boo and the relationship has ended with a loud thud. I feel like that’s the tale that gets pushed around. But I’m here to tell you my experiences with travel and long distance relationships. Not all are so cookie cutter.
Most people in mainstream media advise against long distance relationships. Heck, people on Youtube or just on social media typically yell a loud “NO” if any woman is thinking about entertaining the idea. For me, I didn’t really care about what other people said because at the end of the day, they are not me. It’s a real mantra that everyone should try to remember. One person’s experiences aren’t yours. You can learn from them but that doesn’t mean you will get the same outcome. Don’t be no fool but know that every path is different. So that was mindset when I fell in “like” with a guy while traveling in London.
My story: I was tired of NYC. Extremely over it! Dating scene was poop. My career was pretty good but I was feeling burnt out. Life seemed meh and I just wanted to change it up a bit. So I went on leave (luckily this was granted) and decided to do a short course in London and use it as a base to explore a few other cities in Europe. This all meant dating would be part of it but I wanted to take a risk. Doing something a bit out of the norm and live a life more fulfilled. Along the way, I went out with a few dopes in London (from varying backgrounds) before I ran into what would become my husband.
When I met my husband, I thought he was a nice guy and really liked the flow of our conversation. I didn’t put too much energy toward it though because I had been “tricked” by a few guys and I was tired of getting excited. So I maintained an even flow of “excitement” and kept an openminded without being overly exposed. I would just have fun. The fun was too much end when I reached month 5 of being in the UK on a tourist visa which meant I had to go soon. We decided that we liked each other enough to do long distance and booked a trip before I left so we knew when we’d next see each other. I became that long distance girl but I wasn’t. I was my own person and here’s what I found to be the 5 keys in keeping the relationship healthy.
Define The Relationship
Before I left to NYC, we sat down and discussed what we wanted to do. We both agreed that we were in an exclusive boyfriend and girlfriend relationship. There was no talking around what we wanted or thought it might be, it was said in plain english “this is what we are.” You need to do this to make sure you start it off right.
Be Clear On Communication
We made plans to Google Hangout at least two to three times a week and messaged each other daily. We had clear intervals for when our chats would occur and made sure to keep each other up to date on our days or whatever we wanted to share. We kept our conversation going and treated it as if we lived in the same city.
You need to be honest while doing this long distance thang. If you were missing each other, say it. If you were feeling that the long distance was particularly tough that week, say it! It was super important to us to keep each other in the know on our feelings and to stay honest about where we felt things were going.
Make A Date
One must is to make sure you plan a date to meet up next whenever you are together. As I said, before I went to NYC, we made a plan and booked tickets to Tenerife in two months. This way, we knew when we would see each other next and have a date to look forward to. We did this every time we meet up, picking a new location and booking our flights to where we would meet IRL.
Talk About The Future
A great killer of the long distance relationship is not being on the same page about the future. If one of you is thinking I want to be married in 3 years where the other is thinking I want to be married in 10 years, maybe you should talk. Or if one wants kids but the other is fine with riding solo, these are things to be addressed. You need to be on the same page about your future if you want your relationship to work out!
So in the end, we got married and are still temporarily long distance but it isn’t for too much longer. I know a lot of people talk about how it ends up failing in the end but that is not the case for everyone. It just takes a bit of planning, heart, faith and communication.
Are you guys into long distance relationships? Do you have a mantra about this? Have you seen success?