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The Agony of a Long Distance Relationship

Updated on June 8, 2015

What you will go through

“Triii...triiiing...." goes the alarm. It’s 6:30am, and the dreaded hour has come. She must rise up fast or she will miss the 8 o’clock bus. Any attempts you subtly made to convince her that she’d be better off if she stayed with you have failed. You don’t want to over insist, lest you be branded a self-centered, inconsiderate, narrow minded looser. (Or you are simply being the reasonable, selfless boyfriend your woman deserves). As she packs her last pair of lingerie, you watch quietly wondering whether she needs some assistance. Your heart is heavy with feelings you cannot explain in any human language. For some reason the clock is ticking faster than usual. You decide to go to the kitchen to make her a cup of tea to warm her up before she confronts the morning chills. Just before you're through with heating the water, she calls from the bedroom. “Honey its almost time” you abandon the kitchen and rush to help assemble the bags into the car trunk. As you drive to the bus station, you re-affirm each other’s feelings and promise to always stay in contact. Your eyes are almost teary as she gets onto the bus, but the man in you re assures you that all will be well.

It has been five weeks since she left. Your cell phone has been a part of your hand or better still a companion you can’t live without. Phone calls, texts and mail flowing endlessly. But today something is different; you sent a good morning text, three hours later no response. You try calling only to catch the voice mail. You are a brave man so you decide to wait. May be she is occupied with some stuff. You try to find something to occupy your mind. But every 15 minutes you throw an eye at the phone, just in case a message popped up without catching your ever alert ear. You even double check to see to ensure that it’s not in silent mode. But nothing seems to be showing up. You miss her so much it hurts in the groin.

It’s now been two days and she has not been answering her phone. There is this unbearable heavy feeling in your chest. A terrible feeling of uncertainty sadness, emptiness and disbelief. It’s too heavy you can’t even think straight “What is she up to,” you matter to yourself silently. “Does she miss me even a little, is she sick! Is she seeing someone else?” You have sent mail explaining that you are worried, but all in vain. Finally you give up and sit gazing out of the window like she will walk through it the next minute. You are hopeful that the phone will ring. Despite all the people around you, you are feeling so lonely it is driving you crazy. It eventually does ring after half an hour. You rush to receive it with excitement, only to find your boss calling from work to remind you about the assignment you failed to hand in on time. You are now so angry; you want to smash the phone. But then reason reminds you that it cost you a fortune. You answer the phone and try to speak as calmly as possible, but it’s so hard your boss at the other end of the line can feel you struggling. As you get used to the idea that for whatever reason she is unable to talk to you and may be unable to call you back for a few more hours, (or days), you start noticing that new babe at the reception who has been eyeing you over the past few days….

When your sweetheart eventually calls you back, she should have an explanation for the long silence. Whether you should believe it or not is a topic for another day. The point today is regardless of how long you have been together with your partner you will experience some, all, or more than the feelings expressed in the story above. Different people will handle the situation differently depending on their life experiences in the game of relationships.

If you have been in a long distance relationship before, you perhaps have a clue of what am talking about. If you haven’t, or if you're completely new to it, just keep reading. You have finally found the man or woman of your dreams. The one person your heart desires, the one who makes your world spin. You have been moving out together for five months and you share a passion so hot it could boil an egg. Then one day the inevitable happens. One of you has to move to another city or country or galaxy (for those like me who believe in life in space away from the sweet earth) - you get the point. It could be for so many reasons. May be she has landed a scholarship at the world’s biggest college, or you have found that irresistible dream job with an eight figure salary or worse still some huge storm such as hurricane Katrina, has blown you apart and found your selves in distant villages. Whatever the case you have to say your painful goodbyes and the outcome is never that pleasant.

Long distance relationships can be very challenging and difficult to sustain. In fact research shows that about 55% of all such relationships are likely to fail. Although there are so many reasons for this failure, the ultimate cause of separation is distance. This is because majority of the people involved in long distance relationships, use mail, texts and phone calls to communicate. This deprives them of the benefit of facial expression and body language. Research shows that 60% of the people we communicate with react to what we say on the basis of our facial expression rather than the actual words being said. It is therefore quite easy for miss interpretation to affect communication in such relationships, which can jeopardize an otherwise successful story.

Before I met my girlfriend, I had decided to relieve myself from all the stress that comes with relationships. I had successfully convinced myself to take a break from dating (since my previous relationship was a disappointment) and concentrate on growing myself into a better man socially and financially. Olivia however swept me off my feet, and made me forget all the promises I had made to myself (not that am a man without principles or anything of the sort. It’s just that she is a very special woman). Before I knew it, I was head over heels for her, because she made me feel things I had desired for a very long time. The only constraint is that she was in school while I was working in one town over 200 kilometers from the capital, where she was staying. This was my first ever serious (if you know what I mean) long distance relationship. The experience was new and overwhelming, but we made it work one way or another. I have shared some tips on how you can make it work here...How to make your long distance relationship work.

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