It can be difficult to stay emotionally connected in a long distance relationship, but two things that can really help you is having good communication and building trust with your LDR partner.
When it comes to effective ways to communicate with your long distance partner, technology now provides us with a wide range of long distance relationship communication devices that allow us to easily connect with a long distance love whether it’s through emails, texts, or Facebook messages. It’s not so much about the frequency of your long distance relationship communication that’s important, rather the quality of your exchanges which is essential.
Long distance relationship trust issues are one of the leading causes of long distance relationships breaking down. It’s not that these types of relationships are more prone to cheating or lying, rather the forced distance can easily make you feel less secure or certain about your bond.
That being said, there are long distance relationship red flags to look out for so you don’t get taken advantage of. Rebuilding trust in a long distance relationship after that trust has been broken can be much harder when you live far apart.
Let us take a look at how you can create better communication in your long distance relationship and in doing so build greater trust between you and your LDR partner.
Communication & Building Trust in a Long Distance Relationship
Good communication is a vital part of nearly every aspect of our lives. Communication allows us to express our feelings and gain a clearer picture of issues whether they relate to our careers, education, or relationships. Pretty much everything requires at least some kind of communication in order to function or achieve tasks. Even inanimate objects such as your computer or phone require its internal parts to communicate and work together so as to allow them to run properly.
Relationships can be quite complex systems, especially when you figure it brings together two people that literally have a mind of their own and see the world and issues in different lights. Couples must constantly communicate in order to see and understand what each other’s feelings are towards issues or ideas.
Try to think of a relationship like it is a phone. Most of the time it works in harmony and accomplishes what it was designed to do. When you purchase a new phone, it starts out as a blank slate. Over time you begin to add apps and fill up your phone’s memory with images, videos, and songs. For most, navigating a new phone and learning how to use apps takes a bit of time.
Similarly, your relationship starts from scratch and you begin to collect memories together along with adding components such as cars, jobs, houses, and children. Each one of these components takes a bit of time to understand how they work between you both, but eventually you become somewhat of a pro at them and they become second nature.
Much like a relationship, your phone needs continual updates in order for its system and apps to continue to run effectively. Your relationship requires similar updates in the form of good communication, which allows you to continually address issues that involve you and your partner. You discuss topics such as getting married, making large purchases, or having children. With all these topics, you must gather each other’s input so as to see if you are both on the same page or whether you need to find a compromise to move forward.
Sadly, much like a phone, your relationship can be infected by a virus. Although this can sometimes cause irreversible harm, it many times simply involves a bit of effort to remove the virus in order to restore the relationship. In terms of relationships, a virus can take the form of a betrayal such as cheating or lying. It can also be the loss of a job which may cause financial hardship. This may prove to be too much for some relationships to survive but many times it simply requires communication to solve the issues so you can repair your relationship and move on from the setback. Resorting to taking a hammer to your phone will always prove to be an ineffective way to solve a problem much like yelling at or insulting your partner will be.
It may seem easier for some people to simply purchase a new phone (find a new partner), but that can prove to be a costly decision and involves learning a whole new system from scratch again. Eventually your new phone will lose its shine and will be susceptible to the same problems that affected your previous model.
As much as relationships may be similar to a phone, they thankfully are also very different. People are not bound by the same restrictions that phones have. People have no set data allowance, meaning you can accumulate an infinite number of memories and experiences. People also have feelings and can recognize those of others. Our ability to more easily adapt and think for ourselves allows our relationships to be far more durable and flexible than our phones could ever hope to be.
Also, unlike old phones that may become obsolete after a period of time, relationships tend to only become more rewarding and valuable as they age. The best part is that relationships only need a few key parts to keep running, those being communication, trust, and of course love.
Ways of Communicating in a Long Distance Relationship
It’s important not to confuse talking with communicating. Communication involves both people in a relationship actively expressing their honest opinions while also taking the time to listen to each other. Both verbal and visual cues help us gain insight into what our partner is trying to express.
When it comes to long distance relationships, it can be more difficult to pick up on visual cues on what our partner is feeling since you are not physically with them. Our body postures, the tone with which we speak, and our facial expressions can give words a completely different meaning. This is why things like texts or emails can easily be misconstrued. Long distance relationships require you to be much clearer with your communication as well as feeling free to ask for clarity when you are unsure of what your partner intend to convey.
It is important to remove all distractions when it comes to having important conversations with your long distance partner. This means turning off the T.V. or music when you speak to each other and not multitasking while you juggle your phone during your chats. Make sure you have a clear signal that isn’t cutting in and out and don’t start an important conversation when one of you may be busy at work or involved with an important activity. Choose an appropriate time for your more serious talks and give your partner a bit of a heads-up that you want to talk about something that may be concerning you. This will allow your partner to pick a time where they can truly focus on you and the discussion at hand.
Communication allows us to share with our long distance partner our daily experiences, values, viewpoints, and future plans. Although the distance may take away our ability to read verbal cues, there is a benefit to long distance. Because we rely more on texts and emails, we have more time to think about what we want to say and can really think twice before deciding to express something. People are often more comfortable writing about their true feelings as opposed to expressing them in a face to face manner. This can really help you and your partner get a true sense of what each other’s thoughts are or what you each may be going through.
The more we share our daily experiences and interests with our long distance partner, the more the bond is strengthened. Long distance may allow you to more easily explore important topics with your partner such as views on sex, children, religion, and family. These can often be far more awkward to bring up in person and are therefore many times swept under the rug to be dealt with at a later time.
In the beginning of our long distance relationship, Megan and I would send each other fun “20 question lists” from time to time which we both would answer. The questions would not only allow us to ask each other insignificant things like what our favorite color or favorite food was, but also covered more important topics like whether we believed in marriage or how many kids we wanted to have. It was an effective and simple way to gain a better picture of who the other person was.
Because long distance relationships can be stressful and may require drastic changes in your life for you both to eventually live together, there can be a tendency to always want to discuss important topics or get reassurance that your partner is in the relationship for the long haul. Although it is important to take both your relationship and your life seriously, you want to avoid making your long distance relationship too heavy and drama filled early on. You want the relationship to be fun and not feel like the distance is a heavy burden you need to solve quickly or have all the answers to right away. In time the relationship will continue to grow and things will begin to fall into place.
Building Trust in a Long Distance Relationship
Trusting your partner is the key to any relationship whether it is long distance or not. I don’t think long distance makes trusting your partner any more difficult to be honest. It is just as easy for someone to be dishonest with their partner or to the relationship they share despite how far apart they are.
Before you can trust your partner, you have to ask yourself whether you can trust yourself. It’s the same concept of loving yourself before you can love someone else. You must really decide if you are ready to commit to a relationship and realize what impacts that will have on your life. You need to be open to the fact that many aspects of your life might change from the way you lived when you were single.
Being truthful to yourself is so important when it comes to finding the partner that is right for you. Trying to be someone else or tying to fit the mold of what you believe your partner wants will only result in an unhappy relationship. You can only pretend to be someone you are not for so long before either you or your partner realizes the relationship isn’t genuine.
Be open to sharing your interests and hobbies and don’t be afraid if they differ from your partner’s. Many times it is the differences which intrigue us and ultimately attract us to our partners. You have a responsibility to yourself and your partner to provide an accurate depiction of the person you truly are.
Many people fear fully opening themselves up, as they don’t want to feel rejected or hurt should the relationship come to an end down the line. Unfortunately, you kind of need to go into relationships without any walls up to give you the best chance of success. Eventually you will have to share intimate details of who you are anyway, so it is far better to get everything out in the open early so you can find out if your partner will accept you for who you are. If being yourself proves to be detrimental to the relationship, then the relationship wasn’t real nor was it worth the effort to keep it alive. It is better to find out this truth sooner rather than later so as to not waste your time which could be better spent on finding a partner that will be a more suitable match for your authentic self.
Couples who are committed to their bond should treat the relationship as if they are married in terms of being honest and committed to each other, even if the topic of marriage hasn’t been discussed yet. Trust should be fully built long before you ever discuss committing forever. You can only really build trust by fully respecting each other and laying everything out in the open. Every issue that comes up, whether it is small or large, should be discussed so you can both grow together as a couple.
Trust involves expressing your honest thoughts and opinions while asking for input from your partner. By opening yourself up and showing compassion for what your partner feels, they in turn will be more open to reciprocating those actions. As you share more and more of yourself to each other, you begin to rely on each other for support and your trust in each other continues to grow. And the old saying that actions speak louder than words will go a long way to building trust more quickly.
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