Can Long-Distance Lulls Really Improve a Relationship?

Your early twenties are a weird time, weird age. Maybe you’re kinda in college. Kinda working. Juggling both? Kinda still hoping kindergarten nap time can count as a KINES credit. You’re wondering what sort of career you can pursue and still travel the world. Maybe you’re doing scary things like putting a down-payment on your first home.

You’re fluctuating between midnight “WTF-am-I-doing-with-my-life” panics and semi-sarcastic “Can-I-blog-for-a-living?” reflections over your morning tea. And sometimes, inevitably, you find yourself in an entirely different hemisphere than the one you love.

Wait. What.

Taylor Babe and I have lived apart for a good while now. We’ve got the rhythm of it. Once in a while, we’re in the same state at the same time…or even better, the same city! And those times are pretty sweet. But work, academia and research beckons, a bunch. And that can mean sometimes, he is in Hong Kong while I’m buried in a Texas coffee shop blogging about life values for my little, familial audience.

Even though long-term long-distance can be totally bogus and even though über weird hour Skype dates get old fast, you’re gaining major relationship experience points.

Here’s how.

Independence is good for a relationship.

When you fall in love with someone, it can be really easy to fall in love with all things they do. You may find that after a year of dating, you two have grown really similar. We climb together. We hike together. We run together. We read the same books. We like the same foods. (Creepy, right?) But remember when you were obsessed with photography and kayaking and writing and all these things you don’t really do as much anymore? Your new relationship led you to make sacrifices, and you probably haven’t really noticed up until now. But take a second. What aspects of your own life need some TLC? Can you take this time apart to nurture yourself and your other loves? You totally can.

You should stop being a hermit (occasionally) 

If you’re as introverted as Tay Babe and I, when you’re in the same city together, you don’t particularly care if anyone else in the entire world is in that city. (Except the employees at Torchy’s Tacos…they should be there. God bless them and our wallets). We can go days without socializing with anyone but ourselves. Arguably, this can be bad. With your loved one thousands of miles away, this is a great opportunity for you to make new connections, visit old friends and realize there is more to life than solo hikes and snuggles.

Time apart can make you wiser. 

We’re just trying to gain more tools for our life toolbox. Everyone wants to learn lessons and acquire experiences we can share with own little kiddos 10…15…20 years from now. Time apart means you are faced with new, different challenges day-to-day. Double the experiences, double experience points. You dig, dog?

You will have so much to talk about once he/she is back! 

And with all this solo time away from each other that you used so wisely – falling back in love with yourself, bonding with friends, facing new challenges and gaining new experience – OMG, now there is just so much I have to tell you!

You have the rest of your life to be together

Let’s be real. We will always look out for one another. We will always love each other. There is no matter of distance that can change that. When you’re having a really bad day and just need to crawl under the covers and try again tomorrow, we are there in spirit [and usually Skyped in]. The long-distance spell won’t last forever. There is a tomorrow…and remember, now you will have A LOT to talk about.



  1. YOU are one impressive young lady and our planet is fortunate to have you! I only wish I had been lucky enough to get to know you.

  2. Wow, Alex I am so elated I stumbled upon your blog today. I guess it was God’s way of saying, “you need to read these words.” I’m not sure if you keep up with my life on social media (I have always followed you on accounts since high school… Wow we’re getting old) , but I also am a veteran of the long distance relationship tango. Although our situations are very different, with Jack being stationed in Seattle and me in Wichita Falls finishing up clinical, I’ve never been so at ease reading something in my entire life. You are incredibly talented. I knew that ever since I met you in Mr. Perry’s history class. Your blogs really speak to my soul and this one in particular gave me serenity tonight, so I want to thank you.

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