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    Staying Close When Your Loved One is Far
    Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD posted:
    Long distance relationships are never quite comfortable, but you can make them work by giving them the attention they need, such as:

    Picking the right partner
    Actively work in your life to stay centered and happy
    Set aside time each day to connect
    Make sure to visit each other
    Talk openly

    What have you found to work in maintaining long distance relationships? What has caused yours to fall apart?

    For this and lots more from Dr. Becker-Phelps, please visit her blog, The Art of Relationships.
    LuckyMe responded:
    Everything you mention, we do ----- and we've been in an amazingly happy long distance relationship for 4 years now. A man and a woman both in our early 70's, both divorced after long marriages, met on an internet dating site (after the divorces.) 3 1/2 hours driving time apart and manage to get together most every weekend or more often. Or relationship is as you describe and I am happier now than I believed possible. One addition that works to our benefit is that we make a point to include our families in our "new" life together. It is one more thing that bonds us together.
    fcl responded:
    Over 20 years ago (so no email, no skype, etc), I spent a year studying at the other end of the continent. I was absent all summer then for 2 1/2 months at a time for term and then home for 2-3 weeks vacation (the hard part was not knowing if I'd be able to pay for the transport).

    He called me every Friday night. I wrote to him every evening with my thoughts for the day and posted the letter when I felt I had written enough (lol - sometimes a week, sometimes two letters a day). I sent postcards when I went hiking. I sent small gifts when something caught my eye. When kept me going was knowing that the long distance was temporary and that at the end of the year I'd be going home. What also helped was writing to his mother ... It gave me another angle on reality.

    Keeping him constantly in my thoughts also helped me get the best exam results I have ever had in my life because I was doing it for us and because I had no outside distractions.
    There's nothing inherently dirty about sex, but if you try real hard and use your imagination you can overcome that.
    0048curious responded:
    I am so happy for anyone with a stable long-distance relationship. Mine is a little different. He seems to be unable to commit completely. tells me how much he is IN-LOVE with me, wants to spend the rest of his life with only me... but keeps returning to an EX. Yes, we do talk about everything but even when he is with me, the keeps sending and receiving e-mails, and making secret phone calls. I Can't Give Up. I am a widow for four years, met him about one- and a half years after my husband passed away. HELP!!!!
    BringTowel replied to 0048curious's response:
    I think you know that you don't have him now anyway, so you really wouldn't be giving him up. Start treating yourself better. Join a gym, go out for walks, find out what you enjoy doing and than find others with the same interest. Don't fixate on finding someone to complete you, no one can do that. Learn what you can do for yourself and the rest will fall into place.
    love2lol2 responded:
    I met the man of my dreams on a dating site. At the time I didn't know that's what it was. A friend suggested the site to me and I thought it was a classmates type site so I went there. Right away I matched a man and we began to message each other. I was shy and he was outgoing. This was 9 months ago. He lives on the other side of the US. I required him to ask a question, (and answer his own question), each time we chatted. I did the same. We continued to do that for months until we couldn't think of any more questions. Now 9 months later, we talk for hours by phone most days and never run out of things to talk about. I can talk to him about anything and it feels awesome to have someone like that. We have both been married twice. I always felt like I was eye-candy for my partners and they never were interested in how I felt or even cared which is why it was important for us to ask and answer the questions. I have been alone by choice for almost 10 years now. I had married my first husband when I was 16 and had a very bad experience on our wedding night. So to make the choice to go without sex for all these years was an easy one. Now that I have met my soul mate, I am actually looking forward to our first time with no inhibitions. He is moving here next month as my best friend and not as my future lover. I feel no expectations and neither does he. I am so thankful for my time having a long distance relationship and would be happy staying that way, but glad we are moving forward
    In short, our long distance relationship works because we asked and answered questions every day. We talk everyday. We have been honest (good and bad) about ourselves. I feel safe with him.
    fcl replied to BringTowel's response:
    Great post, BringTowel!
    There's nothing inherently dirty about sex, but if you try real hard and use your imagination you can overcome that.
    An_250669 responded:
    I thought this article was quite beneficial. This is my first serious long-distance relationship. We had dated when I was 32 and he was 28 and when we parted it was on a "bad" note. I've always remained in contact w/his family and am always invited to their family functions--whether he was present or not. Last summer, we reconnected during his family reunion. He's always been a constant thought in my mind and held a special place in my heart. I didn't realize he felt the same way until he returned home after the reunion and began calling me more often. We talk everyday--whether verbablly or txt. We even have "phone dates" and not to mention great "phone sex." I'm assisting him, his cousin and his brother in preparing for his 50th bday party; so I'm really excited about it. I had written him a poem many yrs ago as a bday gift, but he lost it during Katrina and asked if I could find the original copy. I'm desperating searching to find my written notes; so I can recreate it and present to him as his 50th bday gift. He will be here in May for his nephews and youngest son' graduation. Then I'm planning to visit him sometime in July and then 4 his bday in Sept. He's contemplating coming home for Xmas and we can celebrate my bday that is Dec 31. I have open-door policy to visit his mother/sister and often take advantage of it. His family still continues to invite me to various family functions. I feel as long as we maintain the consistency of the procedures we've put in place, the intimacy will only grow. I do give him space for the sake of balance, but in doing so, he often get rattled :0) We talk about the future and he's asked me to join him when I retire
    An_250669 replied to LuckyMe's response:
    WOW--this gives me hope for the future. Congrats 2 u both!I've never been married, but was w/my children's father close to 12 yrs. My present S/O was married in his early 20's but hasn't married since that time. I guess you can call it "divine intervention" that neither of us have married. He talks more about the future than I do--only b/c I don't wanna spook him. Yes, I would marry him if he asked and he has said something to that affect a few mos. ago. He said "he'd be glad when we walk down the aisle." Of course, I got quiet b/c I was totally discombobbulated by what he said. I asked him if he was "tipsy, high or drunk" and he replied no. Then asked me if I was gonna call the next day and ask if he remembered what he said to me. I'm keeping my eyes open for time to reveal the truth.
    versatility replied to BringTowel's response:
    I agree /wBringTowel. 048curious--u deserve better than what he's giving. I bet once u have severed lines of communication w/him, he'll start wondering and wanting what he shoulda been giving u in the first place--an opportunity of knowing and loving each other beyond measure. Best to you in whatever ur decision will be, but do it for u.
    An_250669 replied to love2lol2's response:
    Hi love2lol2--what questions did u ask? I'm curious b/c I have questions I want to ask my long distance S/O. One of my questions, is "what was the deciding factor in him wanting to try a relationship w/me after all this time?" U think that's too vague a question?
    dfromspencer replied to An_250669's response:
    Hi, An_250669

    Sorry to butt in, but I went through that with her also. We asked questions like "Where do you see youself 5 years from now"? Or, "What are your feelings toward marriage"? Even little things like, "What is your (Zodiac) sign, and do you believe in that"? Those kinds of questions, that you had to answer yourself when sending them to the other. And, then they would answer those questions, and then make up their own, answer them, then send em along.

    Hope this helped?

    love2lol2 replied to An_250669's response:
    I think the question is a very good one but remember you also need to answer your own question giving as much detail in the answer as you can. If you feel it is too vague or maybe you won't get the detailed answer you're looking for then ask another question or two to let your S/O where you're going with your question(s).

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