Most of the time, my fiancé and I are separated by 2,380 miles of mountains, valleys, cities, rivers, and plains. We are a long distance couple, and today, I’m here to debunk 5 myths about long distance relationships.
MYTH #1: LONG DISTANCE RELATIONSHIPS CANNOT BE AS DEEP AS TRADITIONAL RELATIONSHIPS.
This was a fear of mine going into a long distance relationship. I was afraid that since we weren’t physically with one another, our relationship wouldn’t grow at the rate traditional relationships do. This is such a lie. In fact, six months into our relationship, my now fiancé and I were amazed at the depth of our bond. It is possible to be long distance and fall deeply in love with your significant other, but it should come as no surprise that this takes active cultivation of your love and connectivity. Beginning early in our relationship, we established routine FaceTime times and wracked our brains (and my Pinterest page) for creative ideas for long distance couples. From the beginning, we’ve prayed relentlessly for our relationship and the Lord has been gracious in answering those prayers. Long distance relationships require work, but if you’re working with someone you love, it’s joyful labor.
My fiancé and I also have a routine that we’ve affectionately termed “our questions,” adapted from Jeremy and Audrey Roloff’s Navigator’s Council. Every Friday, we ask each other 6 questions (see below), and some of the conversations that have stemmed from this activity have strengthened our relationship beyond what we could have imagined.
- What is something that brought you joy this week?
- What is something that was difficult for you this week?
- What is something that has been at the forefront of your mind this week?
- How can I pray for you in the coming week?
- Is there any unresolved conflict that you’d like to talk about?
- What is something I can do for you this week?
MYTH #2: LONG DISTANCE RELATIONSHIPS DISTRACT YOU FROM THE PRESENT.
If you’re not careful, this myth can be true, but it doesn’t have to be. When you’re in a long distance relationship, it’s only natural to miss your person, but it would be unhealthy to spend every waking moment that you’re apart doing nothing besides wishing you were together. Instead, invest in yourself and in your life as an individual. Attend a Bible study. Go out for coffee with a friend. Talk to your parents. Purchase a gym membership and then actually go. There are plenty of things you can do while you’re long distance that will benefit both you and your significant other. So don’t waste your time in a long distance relationship just wishing it were over. It can be challenging, but remember – it’s a sanctifying season in which the Lord can make you more of who He wants you to be (Psalm 66:8-10, 12:b).
MYTH #3: LONG DISTANCE RELATIONSHIPS ARE BORING.
Before committing to a long distance relationship, I worried that it would be boring. Prior to my own long distance relationship, I couldn’t imagine anything fun that long distance couples could do. There are actually plenty of ways to infuse fun into your long distance relationship. For example, I enjoy sending my fiancé cards and care packages in the mail. It’s a sweet way to remind him that I’m thinking of him and a perfect opportunity to embrace my creative side. We also did a unique spin on “date night in” to celebrate our six-month anniversary. We chose a recipe together, each went out and bought all the necessary ingredients, and then cooked and ate the meal together over FaceTime. Snail mail and FaceTime meals are just two of many ideas to spruce up long distance relationships. Challenging each other to a round of Words With Friends, reading a book or doing a Bible study together, and helping each other out with little favors (e.g. editing one another’s essays, placing an Amazon order, etc.) are all good ways to feel connected despite the distance too.
MYTH #4: SEXUAL SIN IS NOT A CONCERN IN LONG DISTANCE RELATIONSHIPS.
Don’t let yourself be fooled. Even though you and your long distance partner spend the majority of your time separated by hundreds or thousands of miles, sexual sin is still a concern. First of all, during holidays or vacations when you do get to see other, sexual temptation will likely be particularly acute. Second of all, sexual purity is not just about what you do or don’t do. Purity is about so much more than outward behavior. It is about your thoughts and desires and the posture of your heart. So pray that the Lord would guard you against sexual sin and lead you in purity. Ask Him for an increased measure of the Holy Spirit and for the wisdom to make prudent decisions. Surround yourselves with other Christians who will exhort you to holiness. Remind yourself that you are not your own…that you have been bought with a price and that you are to honor God with your sexuality (1 Corinthians 6:19-20).
MYTH #5: LONG DISTANCE RELATIONSHIPS AREN’T WORTH IT.
If you’re with the right person, a long distance relationship is more than worth it. I’m not saying that it will be easy. It won’t. But if you’ve found the one whom your soul loves, it will be worth it. In a long distance relationship, your reunions will be dreamlike and your time spent together more precious. The distance isn’t fun, but as my fiancé and I like to remind one another, “distance means so little when someone means so much.”