1. Talk about boundaries before you leave.
It’s good to go ahead and say what you need to say before you part ways. Yes, you probably already know the boundaries because you’ve been dating the person and respect them, but it’s nice to go ahead and say, “I’d prefer that you didn’t get drunk often” or “If you run into an old flame, just let me know.” Communicating some things that would be normal if you were a dorm away gets a lot harder when you’re separated by actual distance. Tell your partner what you expect and ask them what they expect.
2. Don’t be controlling.
You shouldn’t be controlling in general, but avoid this in a LDR. Talk about boundaries, but give them space to make their own choices. You love them, right? Trust in them.
3. Respect time differences.
If you’re in California and they’re in New York, make sure you take the time differences into account. If you want to talk every night before bed, make sure you schedule a time while you’re both up so you’re not constantly calling or being called at 3 a.m.
4. Understand they will see “back home” people.
Yes, this includes all of their high-school best friends (some who may have a crush on your significant other), their ex, the annoying friends, the family you didn’t meet yet, and even the coffee shop barista who knows their order by heart. They have a history in their hometown that you are not a part of. They have connections and memories with a large amount of people that happened before you. Accept this and try not to get jealous.
5. Keep jealousy at an all time low.
If your significant other is doing things that make you jealous all the time, then you should probably reevaluate your relationship. However, if you just get jealous really easily over little things try to relax. Jealousy during long distance can easily turn annoying. Unless your partner has given you a reason not to trust them — trust them. Give them the benefit of the doubt.
6. Stay busy!
This is probably the most important of all. Get a job, run errands, do crafts, watch movies, do whatever you need to do to keep your mind off your partner. Even though you’ll think of them often, time will go by even faster if you have busy days.
Talk daily. This doesn’t mean you should talk every second (have your own life), but make sure you check in often. Talk about your day and talk just for the sake of talking. Utilize technology and FaceTime or Skype. That’s basically the next best thing to being in person. Skype once or twice a week so you’ll have something to look forward to — like Sunday Skype dates or watch the same movie over the phone Mondays!
8. Get creative!
Send letters or cute things in the mail. Don’t get boring and find ways to keep the relationship exciting while miles apart.
9. Have your own life.
Dude, hey, it’s the summer time. Yes you’ll miss your significant other, but this does not stop the fact that it’s summer! Go out and have yourself a good time. You’re allowed to smile away from your love. Don’t stay home and cry every night — you’ll see them again.
10. Go with the flow. Don’t force anything.
If stuff isn’t working out and long distance isn’t your thing, respect the relationship enough to get out. Talk to your partner and let them know how you’re feeling. Honesty is key. If you’re in college, you’ll most likely be doing semi-long distance 8 times (every summer and winter break), but this constant stop and start isn’t for everyone. Do what makes you happy. Relax, take a deep breath, and do what you gotta do.