Thursday, 14 February 2013

Long distance

"How are you and The Person getting on with the long distance thing?" is a question I never really know how to answer.

But whilst I'm not sure what the right answer is, I definitely know what the wrong answer is and that is the truth, which is that we're coping fine. We did long distance before so it's not like it's a massive shock to the system and we're both terribly practical people so we are just getting on with it.

However, trust me when I tell you that this is not what people want to hear. When people see me shrug my shoulders and say "Yeah we're just getting on with it." they read that to mean "Yeah we just don't love each other really and don't care that we don't get to see each other every day."

Nothing could be further from the truth for me. He really is my best friend and having got used to living with each other and seeing each other every day it's really horrible to no longer have that. Especially when we have no idea when this period of separation will end. (The uncertainty of it is the killer - if I knew we were long distance for a specific amount of time I could cope, having an indefinite meandering quality to it is not doing me any favours at the moment.)

Moving to a new place and starting a new job are huge big life-changing, weeing your pants scary type stuff and it's kind of hilarious that the one person that I would want there beside me when I did it, wasn't there. It wasn't easy in the beginning at all.

But, as I said, I'm a practical girl. I know there's no point weeping and wailing, it is what it is and nothing is to be gained from moping about, so I just have to get on with it. When I have a free weekend it is spent going to Preston to see him...

....aah yes...

"When I have a free weekend" - this is a phrase that throws some people. This is a phrase that makes people furrow their brow. Some people find it difficult to conceive that I wouldn't be spending every weekend going to Preston to see him. Some people think that the fact that I don't spend every weekend going to Preston somehow means that our relationship isn't for reals.

The reasons I don't go every weekend to Preston are as follows;
a) Have you seen the price of trains lately?
b) I have a life
c) He has a life

I have a life that is outside of The Person and I don't think that makes me a bad person. He doesn't need to come with me every time I go to Hull and I don't need to go with him every time he goes down South to see his family. He doesn't need to hold my hand when I go to see my friends and it won't affect how good a time he has with his friends if I'm not there.

Although we try to make sure we see each other at least every other week, if other things get in the way we cope with it - an unfortunate clash of our schedules means that we won't see each other for a month after the 22nd February - and that's pretty wank but I wouldn't for a second arrange my plans differently or expect him to cancel his plans.

Personally I think this shows how comfortable I am in our relationship. I don't need to see him every day or even every weekend. Do I wish I could? More than I can express.

What I'm about to say is a little controversial and will no doubt cause lips to be pursed and eyebrows to be raised above the roof, but I ask you to just think about what I say. Take it in and try and understand what I'm saying. I say this from what I think is a reasoned viewpoint, having been in unhealthy relationships where I've relied too heavily on the other person and vice versa.

Does having The Person in my life make my life better? Absolutely, 100% no doubt about it.

But do I need The Person in order to lead a fulfilled and happy life? No, I do not. I have friends (albeit far away, but they're there), I have family, I am capable of keeping myself amused.

And this is how I cope with being apart from him. By knowing that when we are together things are super mega awesome, but also knowing that things can still be awesome without him there. (And awesome is still awesome, even without the super and mega)

And I agree, we shouldn't need one day a year to tell someone we love them, but you know what? I shouldn't need one day a year to tell my Mum I love and appreciate her - but I would be a brave person to tell her that on Mother's Day.

So I'm more than happy to embrace Valentine's Day, give it a little hug and tell The Person that I love him, because at the moment I don't get to tell him face to face every day and there is nothing super, mega or awesome about that my friends.


  1. Thank you for sharing this, I think it is easy to judge other people's relationships but works for you, won;t (necessarily|) work for anyone else!

    Maria xxx

  2. I like your style missus.

    I know it's not quite the same but this is mostly how my friendships work - I adore my best friends but most of them are scattered around the country. You just work with it.

  3. When you live with someone you can sometimes go for days without saying anything meaningful to each other, except for stuff about the minutiae of living day to day. This isn't a bad thing either, but I am using to explain how I can understand you making your situation work for you. Day to day living stuff is done by yourself or with the people you are living with. This isn't really that important in the scheme of things and can be happily dumped from a relationship. When you do see/speak to each other you have lots of stuff to say, most of which is the stuff you NEED to say. You are distilling your relationship into the times you spend together. No one who is healthy and balanced gets all they need from one person, we all have friends and family in our lives and we get things we need from them, when you aren't together. Not being with each other every day can be really hard sometimes, but I can see how you can be happy doing it most of the time. I was happy when I was single, so why shouldn't you be happy standing on your own too feet most of the time either!

  4. Long distance relationships can be crap (mine was UK v Germany and I got to see him 5 or 6 times a year if I was lucky) but your attitude seems pretty healthy to me.

  5. I think you have the right attitude and your relationship is very strong because of it. Ignore everyone else - they are basically stupid. I hate all consuming relationships - they are not healthy. You go girl! You have your head screwed on and I think you guys sound perfect for each other xxx

  6. I love this post, your attitude is a good one and ultimately that is probably what makes it all work. That whole living in each other's pockets too terrified to have your own lives thing can test a relationship just as much as distance. You sound like a great couple and I think you're going to be amazing!

  7. Shhhh, don't tell too many people, but I would even go so far as to say that being long distance has been beneficial for me. Slightly different for me, in that I knew it would come to an end, although not exactly when, but nevertheless, I actually quite like the long distance section of our relationship because frankly, being together all the time, with that much on, would have made us hate each other. I had a job, an internship and a full time postgrad, he had a job, the Army and a full time undergrad, we both have friends, a hobby or 2 and families spread about the place. Trying to fit all that around each other... Hell no. Doesn't mean we don't love each other, it also doesn't mean that waking up next to him most days is fabulous, so frankly, all those lip pursers, and frowny people, who've probably never done the long distance thing, and therefore have no idea what really goes into, yeah, they can do one.

  8. Not long distance but married and living together, but we still have lives separate to each other, which baffles people no end. I enjoy spending time away from him - we have very different interests and hobbies and I reckon we'd both enjoy it less if we forced ourselves to share everything - hell, the first day of our honeymoon in New York, he went to the Comic Con and I went to the Met with a friend who was there at the same time. We both had awesome days, doing things the other one wouldn't have enjoyed, but he reaction we got from people was hilarious!


Go on. Say something. You know you want to...