Most people say they’d never consider a long-distance relationship. But that’s usually before they don’t have a choice. (Hey, life’s full of curveballs.) And while we can all agree that LDRs aren’t ideal, they’re definitely not the end of the world—or even the death knell of your relationship. In fact, with the right mindset, the right expectations, and the right pieces of long distance relationship advice, you can have an LDR that thrives and grows stronger over time.
1.Set Clear Personal Boundaries
One of the most important pieces of long distance relationship advice is to set boundaries. “First and foremost, you and your partner need to set some guidelines: what is acceptable, what isn’t,” says April Davis, relationship expert and Founder of LUMA Luxury Matchmaking. You don’t need us to tell you that boundaries related to fidelity are important, but it turns out that personal boundaries play a huge role in relationships from afar, as well. “Long distance relationships fail because of a lack of trust and invasion of space, even if it’s just virtual space.”
2.Pretend You’re Single
Yup, for real. Aside from actually having a physical relationship with someone else, experts say you can pretty much behave however you want—kind of like when you were single.
“Do what you want,”recommends Gabriella I. Farkas M.D., Ph.D., founder of Pearl Behavioral Health & Medicine. “Rejoice in your life and your accomplishments. Post pictures and statuses on social media about how you are and what you have been doing. Spend time with friends.” Basically, enjoy your life!
“The better you know and appreciate yourself, the better you can focus on knowing and appreciating your partner when you are together,” she says.
3.Never Spend More Than Three Months Apart
An important question everyone seeking long distance relationship advice asks is how long you can go without seeing your partner. “Ideally every three months is the minimum,” says Rami Fu, a dating coach and expert, although your timeframe can vary as long as you agree on it together. “This is so you don’t forget why you love that person in the first place, and get some sex. It will also allow you to see how they evolve as a person.”
4.Don’t talk everyday
You might think talking every single day when you’re in an LDR is a must. The truth is, experts say it’s really not necessary and might actually be harmful to your relationship. “You don’t need to be in constant communication,” Davis says. “Keep some of the mystery alive!”
If you go a few days without talking to your S.O., you’ll have a more interesting conversation to look forward to in a few days. Plus, keeping tabs on another person and providing them with constant updates can get exhausting. A
5.Know What Success Means In Your Relationship
It’s hard to know whether things are going well in your long distance relationship if you don’t have a goal in mind. Do you want to make it through a short period of separation? Eventually get married? Stay married even though your jobs are taking you to different locations? Having an idea of what success means to you and whether or not you’re getting closer to it is key when you’re trying to evaluate whether things are “working” or not.