Long-distance relationships?

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AuthorTopic: Long-distance relationships?
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I decided, since I've returned, that I might as well ask a serious question to get a good topic going.

What's your opinion of long-distance relationships? Do you think they can work? Why or why not?

I'll start. I think they can work. With the right amount of planning and if the love is deep enough, I think distance becomes something of little consequence.

I'm in a long-distance relationship. My boyfriend lives more than 1,000 miles from me. I live in Pennsylvania and he lives in Arkansas. We are very much in love and have been committed to each other for over a year now. Next year, after he graduates from high school, I will be taking a bus trip to go there and bring him here to live with me.

We are both Christians, so we are strictly committed to each other. We both trust each other enough that we believe neither of us will cheat on the other. We have never met each other in person, but have exchanged pictures... again out of trust... and for the moment our only means of communicating in through Instant Messengers online.

So, what does everyone else think about long-distance relationships?

"Keep your wits about you, the game is afoot!!" - Sherlock Holmes

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Posts: 935 | Registered: Friday, August 8 2003 07:00
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Long distance relationships I've found don't work very well, at least for me. I've tried to keep one going between me and one of my old girlfriends that's moved to Kentucky. It dosen't work. But good luck with you Sherlock!

And everybody say....Yatta!
Posts: 1287 | Registered: Thursday, August 14 2003 07:00
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They don't work, unless you are the luckiest person in the world.

And here's some Christian bashing: most people in America are Christian. That doesn't stop them from committing horrible acts of the heart-breaking type. I speak from experience when I say, don't rely on that.

I do, however, find the "never really met" thing a little weird. From what I understand, that could end up poorly if you directly move into the "roommate" stage. I'm not sure exactly how gay relationships work, but us heteros need some get-to-know-you room :P .

Regardless, I wish you luck. I honestly hope you break the traditional "rules of engagement" (as I've coined it). I hope everything turns out great.

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Posts: 1582 | Registered: Wednesday, November 13 2002 08:00
Electric Sheep One
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Well, they can work. My wife of almost ten years and I moved to separate continents shortly after we started going out, and it was nearly six years before we were living together full time. For most of that time living apart we were actually married; I used to joke that we were living in sin.

We were also committed, and shared Christian values and spiritual support systems. We were in our late twenties when our relationship started, so we had settled down as people a bit, and we had known each other as friends for a few years before we started dating. Plus while we were living apart we had jobs that paid well enough to afford our outrageous phone bills, and to travel back and forth to see each other fairly regularly. So in fact we spent nearly 1/4 of our time together, in the years we were living apart.

We had some adjusting to do when we finally did move in together, but it was worth it.

We were lucky, in all the extra things we had going for us, and maybe demonslaeyr is right that we needed that much luck. I can't say. We definitely were serious about our relationship. We only spent a year of long distance relationship before getting engaged and then married, and we had a big formal wedding and bought the nicest rings we could afford.

[ Saturday, July 30, 2005 18:38: Message edited by: Student of Trinity ]

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I honestly don't think they can work. How do we know that they aren't seeing someone else at the same time? It all comes back to trust. With IM or AIM, we only see the text, and can't see their faces (bar webcam), so we don't know if they are secretly laughing.

So, no.

I'll put a Spring in your step.

Posts: 2396 | Registered: Saturday, January 29 2005 08:00
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I don't place a lot of faith in long-distance relationships, but not just because of the commitment issue. Sure, you're faithful to each other, and I think it's great you are so trusting, but you haven't been with each other in person and you already want him to live with you. You might discover that living with the person is very difficult, even if he behaves a certain way on the Internet (as the "Anonymity" thread has proved). After all, right now you don't have to wake up with the person, do chores with the person, split bills, etc. All of those opportunities for arguments might cause the relationship a lot of trouble.

However, if you're able to tolerate how he is in real life, and vice-versa, then you'll be fine. I guess the potential for true love is worth the risk, but make sure that you communicate well with your partner in "Real Life" once everything falls into place.

I hope it all works out.

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Posts: 154 | Registered: Monday, June 20 2005 07:00
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I think Long-distance relationships can work. As long as you both love, trust, and are committed to each other, and if you both have an idea of how long is it going to take to be together again. For example, I once tried to have a long distance relationship and we really loved each other. Nonetheless, the reason why it didn't work was because I had no plans of moving back to the Dominican Republic, and he was not moving to the United States either; therefore, no matter how long we waited we would never be together for more than just a couple of weeks.

I think that if the wait is less than two years (in which you agree to see each other at least a couple of times), and you two really love and trust each other, than it could definitely work. The reason why most Long-distance relationships don't work is because people do not truly love or trust each other. I've seen cases where the girl cheats on the guy because she thinks he is cheating on her and vice versa.
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Well... I don't really know what I think about them yet. In the past, I probably would have said I don't think they work. However, several months ago a friend of mine who also lives in Victoria met someone online who lives in Wisconsin. I'm not sure how they met, but it was on some message board. They started talking to each other on an instant messenger, and then it moved to talking on the phone as well. They've also seen the other's picture.

Anyway, after a while they decided that they wanted to meet in person, so the one from Wisconsin is coming to Victoria to visit in under two weeks. It's just so they can be with each other in person for a couple weeks, though; it's nothing permanent.

So, I don't really know if I think long-distance relationships work or not. I guess it really depends on the people involved. The relationship my friend has actually seems like it has potential, and I know both people are committed and in love with each other. I suppose I'll find out in a couple weeks whether it works out or not :P .

The relationship you have with your boyfriend sounds promising, though, and I hope everything works out for you two.

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Posts: 402 | Registered: Thursday, May 29 2003 07:00
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All love is doomed, so distance doesn't make yours any more doomed than anyone else's. Go for it.

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Posts: 9973 | Registered: Saturday, March 30 2002 08:00
Shock Trooper
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In principle yes, but.
Let me give an simile.
Can you move a bike by pushing it instead of riding it?
Sure you can - especially if a tire is flat and you have no other means of transportation.
Or if you are afraid and have yet to learn how to keep your balance.
Would I commit myself to pushing a bike as a sole means of transportation - probably not if I had any better opportunity.
Would that imply infidelity or lack of commitment?
That depends on me and my hopes, n the bike and the distance and the weather and ...

What I find remarkable, MSW, is that your relationship is meant to be exclusive if I understand you correctly. Are you sure that is in your mutual interest?

The problem with long distance relationships I see is one of bandwidth in communication.
There are so many emotions and attitudes that remain uncommunicated without eye contact. So many opportunities to fill in the gaps by wishful thinking.

You may be able to push your bike with your eyes closed clinging to the bike for a while if you are on a well-known path. And it may feel much better than walking without a bike and without the hope to ride it some day.
However, it is nothing like the real thing - not to speak of the Tour de France.

[ Saturday, July 30, 2005 22:05: Message edited by: No 2 Methylphenidate ]
Posts: 311 | Registered: Friday, February 13 2004 08:00
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Originally written by demonslaeyr:

And here's some Christian bashing: most people in America are Christian. That doesn't stop them from committing horrible acts of the heart-breaking type. I speak from experience when I say, don't rely on that.
To be fair, "Christian" has become almost a meaninglessly broad term. It hardly implies one individual set of beliefs these days. So while Sherlock appears to consider Christianity and cheating on your internet boyfriend to be incompatible, someone else may not. I'd consider homosexuality and Christianity to be incompatible, but quite obviously not everyone shares that view. Point is, I'm sure Sherlock and his boyfriend have discussed their religious beliefs in more depth than just comparing labels.

As regards the actual topic, I'm probably the world's least qualified person to comment. :P

[ Saturday, July 30, 2005 22:37: Message edited by: Ash Lael ]

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Posts: 1861 | Registered: Friday, February 11 2005 08:00
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I was simply stating that he shouldn't use the term "Christian" to describe the beliefs. I'm aware of the broadness (hell, the Enron guys call themselves Christian, as did Bill Clinton, not to mention my ex-girlfriend), but sometimes it's just best to explain exactly what you mean instead of using a coined term.

Having said that, I personally have pretty much based my beliefs on the whole relationship thing around what I've grown up being told is right. That of course, is a Christian home. While I ignore the supernatural hub-bub, I tend to agree with the more philosophical areas. I realize this is unrelated to the current topic, but for some reason I felt the need to share it.

Returning to the problem, it's just as others have stated. It's all about trust. I, for one, happen to trust no one (or next to none, at least). Long distance relationships would NEVER work for me, especially with my odd need to spend loads of time with my significant other. Others don't have this need, therefore we're incompatible. We might like eachother, and say we're committed, but eventually that all just goes down the drain.

And on other days, I agree with Thuryl.

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Posts: 1582 | Registered: Wednesday, November 13 2002 08:00
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As long as the person doesn't worship satan and is preferably Christian, it'd probably work out for me.

Even though I personally find relationships a waste of time.

[ Sunday, July 31, 2005 08:40: Message edited by: Millicent, Dear Millicent ]

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I wouldn't consider a long distance relationship. If I was dating someone and I really loved her, and a time came where we would have to be seperated for a long period of time, I would stay in the relationship, but otherwise.. no.
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Law Bringer
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Interesting topic... one that's been leaping around my mind for a while now. My girlfriend and I are headed for different colleges at the end of the summer (about 2 and a half hours apart), and while it's not a very long distance, neither of us is likely to have a car. We're unsure if it could work, and it's really unpleasant even talking about it. Actually, we've only got about 2-3 weeks left before we both leave... I don't even like thinking about it, really.

Personally, if you start a relationship as a long-distance one, I think it can work (you just need the aforementioned commitment). But you can't turn an existing one into a long-distance one without major difficulties (which I can vouch for). It's just a matter of how you're accustomed to seeing your partner, and how drastically that changes (if it ever does).

And about the Christian thing, not to bash or anything, but everyone is susceptible to the same pressures, regardless of what you believe in. You're not more committed because of your beliefs, though they can help reinforce that. You're committed because it's part of your personality, and your beliefs just happen to fall into place with however you feel about it.

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Posts: 4130 | Registered: Friday, March 26 2004 08:00
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Anyone can claim to be Christian. Only some really are.

Long-distance relationships have brought people together, and they do work to some extent, but really the best way to make a relationship is meeting each other every day and talking in person. That way, you can figure a lot else about them just my looking at body language and such.


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Posts: 3360 | Registered: Friday, June 25 2004 07:00
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Originally written by Thuryl:

All love is doomed, so distance doesn't make yours any more doomed than anyone else's. Go for it.
Awww! Why do you think that?

I'd say they do work. If you love someone enough, distance shouldn't be a problem. Not with the internet. And you can always see them at holidays, etc.

The thing is, if it's permenantly distanced, it will be pretty much impossible. After all, you wouldn't see them enough. And if you're like me, worried they'll meet someone better. But if you plan to marry, why not wait a little while, and be far apart? I see no harm in that.

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Posts: 2864 | Registered: Monday, September 8 2003 07:00
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Whether long distance relationships work depends on people involved and the circumstances. I've seen two couples who started a long distance relationship and sucessfully converted it into regular one with one of the partners moving cross-country to live with the other. However, one of the couples met at a friend's wedding, so the initial interest happened after a couple days of RL contact. (And the fact that both of them were invited to that wedding, meant that this common friend had a very high opinion of both of them.) The other couple met through an online dating site. In one case both people were in late twenties. In the other, they were in early twenties, but had a lot of dating experience. (So in both cases people knew exactly what they were looking for.)

The main advice for a long distance relationship that you intend to make permanent is for each person to visit the other for about a week before deciding on anything. While you could spend hours on the phone every day (about 1-4 hours daily in the examples I've described), there are some things you will never know until you've seen how the person lives during everyday life. Going for a vocation together, or that person visiting you isn't the same thing as you visiting them.

Thus, while long distance relationships can work if done correctly, I would not recommend moving across country until you've visited each other a few times and had the relationship going for over a year. Seeing pictures and chatting online is not the same thing as living together.

[ Monday, August 01, 2005 10:05: Message edited by: Zeviz ]

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It's difficult to describe to people how I can be satisfied with my relationship without ever having actually met my boyfriend. Because of the fact that we can't meet until he graduates, I've had to learn to be patient.

And others say how can you be sure of what it will be like when you are living together. We have been talking online for over a year now and we share everything with each other. We talk about what each other is like. We have pretty much discussed everything we need to discuss. We know much how each other acts daily. For us there is no need to meet each other to date or anything. We know we are compatible with each other.

However, how to explain to people how it is that we know there will be no problems is not easy. We take things on faith, while many people would rather take things on experience. Our religious convictions, despite what some have said, are what hold things together for us. We believe that God brought us together, and that we are soul mates, so we are determined to make things work no matter what. And if we must wait two or more years to be together, we are fine with that. Time and distance mean nothing to us.

"Keep your wits about you, the game is afoot!!" - Sherlock Holmes

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In my opinion relationships only work at long-distances. Or at least in some distance. As closer you live together as more flaws you might discover: small, daily things, unwashed dishes, hairs in the sink, stinking socks on the floor ... Believe me, you might learn things about your beloved that you didn't really want to know.
As long you love over a distance there is always promise and hope and yearning. But when your prince is too close you might see the frog shining through.
^_^ Thus I recommend at least separated sleeping-rooms.

edit: :) Long live your long-distance love, MSW!

[ Monday, August 01, 2005 13:16: Message edited by: spy.there ]

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The experience of others around me (I've never been in such a relationship myself) leads me to believe that it's luck, more than anything you can do, that'll make a long-distance relationship work. I mean, sure, there's the obvious stuff like staying in touch, but at the end of the day, luck has an awful lot to do with it (as with any relationship). So, you know, go to it.

The good news is that, of course, if you're getting cheated on long-distance, what you don't know can't hurt ya! Unless your partner gets an STD. Then it can hurt ya...
Posts: 236 | Registered: Wednesday, October 3 2001 07:00
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A long distance relationship probably could work out successfully, as many have replied about already, if the two people really knew each other really well.

The problem is, real-life standards when people meet for the first time could be a different story. If a long distance relationship is based merely on IM, phone talk and exchanging pictures, there's sort of that fine line of communication, especially if the couple has already met or are apart from each other because they're married or in a long term relationship. If vice-versa were to happen, well, it may not work out as well.

I personally have not gone through a long distance relationship, but that's just my opinion of it, based on what I've seen some friends of mine who have hooked up through online dating.

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Posts: 220 | Registered: Monday, July 11 2005 07:00
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Originally written by Lord Bob:

The good news is that, of course, if you're getting cheated on long-distance, what you don't know can't hurt ya! Unless your partner gets an STD. Then it can hurt ya...
That statement sickens me. It's not your fault, just the whole "what you don't know can't hurt you" saying. I'd like to injure whoever came up with that.

Er... any update on this situation, Sherlock?

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Demonslayer is "a five star hit!" raves TIMES Weekly!

"I've never heard such thoughtful comments. This man is a genious!" says two-time Nobel Prize winning physicist Erwin Rasputin!
Posts: 1582 | Registered: Wednesday, November 13 2002 08:00
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My update was pretty much my first post. I won't have anything new to report until...

1. I get my insurance money...

2. I get a call from the Housing people...

3. Another year goes by and my boyfriend graduates.

4. I am able to move...

"Keep your wits about you, the game is afoot!!" - Sherlock Holmes

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How much older than him are you, dude? That always plays into it as well...

Anyway, I'll throw my hat into the long-distance-doesn't-work ring. As a study abroad coordinator, I've known all kinds of relationships to be destroyed by distance, even for periods of time as short as a semester. People just have to have that proximity!

As for your circumstance, MSW, I say be careful, for several reasons. First, this kid is underage, and doesn't necessarily know who he is or what he wants to do with his life. When I went to undergrad, there was a motto: Never date a first-term freshman. He'll just be graduating and learning the ropes of the real world. Second, meeting people off the internet is also dicey - pictures and the typed word are no substitute for actual human interaction (have you talked with this person on the phone?) and when this happens, anything could happen.

Best of luck to you, though it seems to me that you're coming on pretty strong.
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