How can I keep a long distance relationship going?

We weren't long distance until he joined the military. I love him and I know he loves, me but it's complicated. He said he's not going to find someone else, but I'm afraid. How do I keep our relationship going?

Virginia Chow
Virginia Chow

Hello. You are asking a very good question about how to sustain a long-distance relationship. Although maintaining a long-distance relationship has its challenges, with the proper communication, commitment, and understanding, many long-distance couples are able to thrive and maintain a close connection. 

Without knowing more about the "complicated" nature of your relationship, I wonder whether your boyfriend has given you reason not to trust him that makes afraid that he will find someone else. Has he cheated on you in the past and has shown romantic interest to another person that made you fear losing him?  Or, is your thought just a fear but not based on evidence? Knowing that distinction is important because if it is the latter, you may benefit from refocusing on the wonderful qualities about your partner that makes you feel good about him and the relationship rather than focusing on the unknown or uncertainty of the future. The more you focus on "what if" situations, the more you may feel anxious about a reality that is not accurate and make you act in ways that are insecure. 

However, if there is reason for you to question his fidelity, you may have to speak to your boyfriend about how to build trust in the context of a long-distance relationship. To help the conversation, you may need to consider what you may need to experience or receive as support to feel safe in the relationship to build trust. Is that you wish him to contact you regularly, or to include you more in his life, or to make a clear commitment? For many of my clients in my private practice, that may include talking to their partner often and using a variety of modalities including text, phone, and Skype. It's hard to believe in a relationship when you never talk to your partner, and it's hard to build a relationship when you don't know what's going on in your partner's life. Other times, it is Making sure they talk often to their long-distance partner so that they can participate in each others lives and to feel their presence.. Regular communication, understanding and caring is the key to sustaining any relationship, but this is especially true for long-distance ones. 

Dr. Virginia Chow

The information above is intended as general information...  (more)The information above is intended as general information based on minimal information, and does not constitute health care advice. This information does not constitute communication with a counselor/therapist nor does it create a therapist-client relationship nor any of the privileges that relationship may provide. If you are currently feeling suicidal or are in crisis, call 911 or proceed to your local emergency room.

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