“Absence makes the heart grow fonder” is one of those obnoxious and inspirational quotes everyone seems to tell couples starting out on their first long distance relationship. It would be a nice sentiment if it wasn’t accompanied by that nagging thought in the back of the speaker’s mind (that they are much too polite to actually say): I give them four months. However, a study in the Journal of Communications has shown that absence might truly make the heart grow fonder and that couples who participate in a healthy long-distance relationship can have more meaningful interactions than couples who see each other daily.
While I found myself second-guessing our relationship in the earlier, pre-long distance months, after we lived apart, I knew my husband was committed.
Or, more specifically, we have both decided that we communicated most efficiently when we lived in different cities.
When we had to work for it (Skype, email, video messages, etc), we treasured what the other person said. Between study abroad, job transfers, the “two body problem,” and a million other reasons for couples to live in different cities, long distance relationships are becoming mainstream.
For a long distance relationship to work, both parties must be equally committed because staying in a long distance relationship is not the “path of least resistance.” You are either 100% committed or wavering on the edge – and if you are wavering on the edge, it is pretty obvious.
I can’t count the number of friends in “normal” relationships who have stayed in relationships because it was easier than ending it.
But if the love of your life moves halfway across the world and neither of you has any intention of altering your future to end up in the same city, you should think twice about starting a long distance relationship.