Love from Afar: Making Your Long-distance Relationship Work in College

Long-distance relationships in college generally mean one of two things has happened: one, you and your significant other decided to go to different colleges, or two, you went off to college and your significant other stayed behind. Either way, having a solid relationship with your boyfriend or girlfriend all boils down to one word really, whether you live two houses down from the love of your life or two states away. That word is communication.

When you move off to college, a lot of things from your past —particularly high school — start to fade quickly into the background. You have to make a concerted effort to keep even your best friends from high school in your life if they’re not there with you. The same is true of your hometown sweetheart. It may sound obsessive, but part of that is making sure you talk on the phone with him or her every day at some point, even if it’s only for a few minutes.

However, a few minutes on the phone — if that’s all you ever make time for — will not be nearly enough to keep you close. You have to make that time count. Give them a run-down of your day since they’re not around to share it with you. That means sharing the little things that make you smile during your day, sharing your struggles, confiding your secrets and continuing to reaffirm your love for him or her. A text message with the simple words "I love you" before you go to class can do wonders for keeping your relationship strong.

There are also ways you can go the extra mile to let your significant other know you care about him or her. For instance, you can send a care package full of baked goods, a mix CD of their favorite music, photos of you and your friends in your dorm, a love letter and some of his or her other favorite things. Gestures like this let your boyfriend or girlfriend know you care about them and are still willing to take the time to do something thoughtful for them even though you live far apart.

Finally, try to visit each other on the weekends every now and then, and if you live particularly far apart, make sure you at least get together on the major holidays. After all, talking on the phone is nothing compared to hearing the sound of their voice right next to you!

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