Slaying the Long Distance Dragon

Hey all it’s Sarah! Welcome back to Robotic Relationshipz! Today is a sad day as this will be my last post. I hope you’ve enjoyed keeping up with the team, myself, Courtney, Jesse, and Caroline. It has been a real pleasure writing for you! With that said, I have a little story for you…

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Once upon a time there was a young princess named Samantha who lived in a far away land called Alexandria. Samantha finished her schooling, and traveled to a cold and dreary kingdom called Moorhead to further her education. During her stay in Moorhead the girl met lots of friends and enjoyed freezing her butt off every day walking to class. Although she was having the time of her life, something was missing. Then one day she found it… Samantha was visiting with friends when a handsome young man walked into the room. He introduced himself as Prince Connor. The two started seeing each other and fell in love. Though this may seem like a happily ever after moment, the two would face hardships in the future… The long distance dragon!

What is this terrifying thing called a long distance relationship (LDR)?

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An LDR is when two people are in a relationship, yet they live further apart and don’t get to see each other very often. This can be hard on your relationship if you don’t know how to fight the distance. Good thing for Samantha and Connor we live in the day and age where cell phones are glued to our hands and a video chat is just a click away.

Why would anyone want to be in an LDR?

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Surprisingly there are 14 million couples who say that they are in an LDR.  How many of these relationships are like the story I told you above (minus the kingdom, prince, and princess of course)? According to Long Distance Relationships Statistics, 32.5 % of all long distance relationships are college relationships. College students may not have the finances to choose to stay near their partner. Being in an LDR is the only option for them to stay together until they can be physically together again.

Many married couples also find themselves in similar situations. A partner could be sent away for military duty leaving the couple in an ultimatum. Break off the relationship (heck no!) or start an LDR with your loved one. We do what we can to keep the relationship going, even if it is not the easy route. What many people don’t think about is that a long distance relationship may be a really good thing for YOU. Here are some of the best reasons to hang onto that long-distance boyfriend (or girlfriend).  This article shows how an LDR can be good for you personally in the long run.

Although many couples in an LDR find a way to make it through the distance, loneliness is something that can easily seep into the relationship. I found that there are four difference stages to loneliness; denial, short-term extreme depression/loneliness, steady depression, and acceptance.  During the acceptance stage, a person either replaces or surrenders. To learn more about loneliness please click here.

If you or a loved one is struggling with being in an LDR, please take a look at the following links. Being in an LDR can be difficult at times, but know that you are not alone.

7 Tips on Coping with Loneliness in a Long Distance Relationship

How to Deal with Extreme Loneliness in a Long Distance Relationship

Need help? United States:
1(800) 273-8255
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

Well, do they work online?

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Let’s get down to the reason you’re probably reading this post. You might want to know if LDR’s actually work through social media and other forms of technology. Being in an LDR can have its ups and downs. According to Long Distance Relationship Statistics, 40% of all LDR’s end up in break ups, and 70% of failed LDR’s break up for unplanned changes. The average lasting relationship is 4.5 months for long distance couples. This may seem shocking, so let’s take a step back. Statistics don’t necessarily represent your life, or your situation. You may be deciding if this type of relationship is right for you, so I’ll give you a few pros and cons to help weigh in on your decision.

Can social media and technology be ruining your LDR?

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Many may disagree and say that social media is a great way to stay in touch with your significant other. But is it really? According to TheCoupleConnection, 36% of couples say that Facebook led to the break up of their LDR. Similarly 20% say they broke up because one person cheated, while the other found out through Facebook photos.

Being in an LDR and using social media can be difficult. Being able to creep on your partner whenever you want, and check up on what they are doing can be dangerous. It is very easy to misunderstand something that they posted, or even a text they sent you. Be wary when it comes to using social media as a huge factor in your LDR.

While being able to check up on your significant other is easy, it is just as easy to check up on your ex. Checking up on your ex can have a negative impact on your current relationship. Questioning your current relationship by comparing it to your last relationship is not the way to go.

One word. Porn. Porn can be a huge influence in ruining your relationship. Being apart can be hard, and well, lonely. But porn can give a person unrealistic expectations when it comes to sex. Watching porn can affect the way you feel towards having sex with your partner when you finally get to be with each other again.

While watching porn (or having sex) dopamine is released into the brain. This creates a craving for this thing, in this case, porn. Norepinephrine is also released gearing your body up for what is going to happen next. The hormones oxytocin and vasopressin help with long term memories. They form a relation between the object giving you pleasure. Porn is what is getting you excited and when your body gets excited again it will crave porn because that is where you got your last fix. During sex or watching porn your body also released endorphins that give you a high, and serotonin that gives you a sense of relaxation.

Porn can be a larger problem in an LDR than an in person relationship because it is easier to log onto a computer than see your significant other. So, do you think your partner would want you craving a computer screen over them? Be wary of the use of porn in your LDR.

How can social media and technology help your LDR?

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While I clearly just gave you a ton of reasons as to why social media and technology are bad in this kind of relationship, here are some reasons that it could help!

The LDR can be less stressful to keep up with technology. Being in a regular relationship can be hard to plan around. Having to hang out, going on dates, and coordinating schedules. Using technology in an LDR can make planning easier. You can send a text throughout your day, and your partner will answer during their next free moment. Making a phone call before bed can be an easy nighttime routine as well.

There are even technology tools that help couples feel more connected. Have you heard of Pillow Talk? Each partner gets a pillow and a ring. When you go to bed you put the ring on your finger and lay your head on the pillow. The pillow on your partner’s bed will then start glowing softly. Check it out here!

Pillow Talk

Let’s face it, there’s always an app for that…

Avocado is an app for couples that keeps track of anniversaries and dates so that you will never forget your significant other during busy times. You can share pictures, messages and “kiss” each other’s photos.

Skype is also a huge help, as you can see and hear one another and have a more “real” conversation. I tend to use Skype in my current relationship when we are apart for the summers. Texting and calling is nice, but being able to see that person is one step closer to being together. Don’t be like Cinderella, and make sure your significant other remembers your face!

One of my personal favorites is called Couple, the relationship app for two! This app allows partners to “Thumb kiss” through their phones. Wait, what? When you touch the same place on your screen as your partner, the phone vibrates. It’s a small way to show that you are thinking about that person.

How can you have your happily ever after in an LDR?

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Here are some tips to keeping your LDR on the right track:

  • Prioritize- just because you are not in the same city (or kingdom) doesn’t mean that you can’t have time for each other. Setting aside time is really important for maintaining a healthy relationship.
  • Commitment- make sure that you and your partner have the same values and understanding of the relationship. Do you have a monogamous relationship, or is it open?
  • Share- sharing information with you partner is just as important as sharing your partner with your friends. When you finally get to visit, don’t hide away together. Show your significant other to your friends! Let your friends get to know them they way that you do.
  • Planning- planning time to talk together on the phone, planning a trip to see each other, planning for the future when you two are back in one place again. This is important because without planning, the relationship may seem like it is not going anywhere. Plus it’s exciting to get to plan dates for when you see each other next!

For more helpful tips for creating and maintaining a healthy relationship, check out these articles:

Why Long-Distance Relationships Never, Ever Work (Except When They Do)

How to Keep a Long-Distance Relationship Strong and Sexy

Secrets of Successful Long Distance Relationships

Are you in a long distance relationship? You might relate to a few of these…

http://www.buzzfeed.com/candacelowry/things-no-one-tells-you-about-being-in-a-long-distance-re#.xhANQ1Jz3

As always, it has been a wonderful experience getting to share my posts with you all! Now get out there and find your happily ever after…

Sarah

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