All romantic relationships have their ups and downs. However, long-distance relationships (LDR) have their own set of challenges to overcome, particularly feelings of loneliness, sadness, anxiety, and isolation when your partner lives far away. Of course, all couples experience feelings of distance at various times, but there'll be periods of lonely days and nights if your partner is in another city or another country.
Due to current travel restrictions and other uncertainties, many long-distance couples face physical separation for even more extended periods than planned. Busy schedules, travel delays, time differences are all harsh realities of a long-distance relationship. If you are currently in a long-distance relationship, rest assured; you are not alone!
The good news?
Lovebox is here with practical tips on dealing with loneliness in a long-distance relationship. Keep reading to discover which information you think would be best to implement with your partner!
1. Decide on a Consistent Routine
Loneliness can creep into a long-distance relationship at any time, but especially when several days go by without a face-to-face chat or a more extended texting conversation. Consequently, it’s essential to agree upon a routine mutually.
It can be as simple or as creative as you’d like—morning phone while you’re both getting ready or an evening wine session over Skype—whatever helps you and your relationship partner feel close. Having a communication schedule filled with video calls to talk about daily life can help you both feel a better sense of closeness.
2. Set Mutual Expectations
Discuss each other’s needs and feelings to agree ahead of time what the other person needs to make the long-distance relationship work when they feel particularly distant and lonely— more video chats, more texting, more visits, and quality time. When agreeing on mutual expectations, it’s essential to discuss long-term hopes and plans for your relationship. It’s super helpful to have an end in mind when setting the expectations.
3. Be a Better Active Listener
Active listening involves reducing distractions in your own lives and entirely focusing on your partner’s needs and feelings. Build your listening skills by practicing showing genuine interest in what your partner wants to share with you, regardless of the topic. The key to making sure your partner feels less lonely in your relationship is building your listening skills, so the other person feels heard and seen.
4. Plan a Trip
As simple as it may sound, finding every opportunity to see each other in person is one of the best ways to deal with loneliness in a long-distance relationship. The time spent together will tremendously increase your emotional intimacy. Even if it’s just for a single night or two at the halfway point between where both of you live, both you’ll be necessary to keep both of you satisfied. A short vacation together could make a big difference.
5. Write Old-Fashioned Love Letters
Writing old-fashioned letters go a long way in keeping two people connected in our modern society. It doesn’t matter what you write your partner; tell them how you feel or share something exciting about your week. If you don’t feel you are creative enough to find something to write about, you can share the lyrics to your favorite song of the week or a joke you heard.
6. Start a Countdown to the Next Time You See Each Other in Person
Set a date for the next time you get to see each other in person and start crossing off the days on your calendar. Send each other a daily countdown update to build the excitement. Knowing you will see each other soon will help ease feelings of loneliness and have something you both can look forward to during long days and nights of missing each other, especially if your love language is physical touch.
7. Go on Virtual Date Nights
No matter how far apart you are, going on a classic date night (virtually) with your partner is one best to feel less lonely in a long-distance relationship. Date night doesn’t have to be something elaborately planned; it can be both of you in your PJs munching on popcorn watching Friends.
You could also play online games together, practice yoga or meditation through video chat, or watch Youtube. Whatever you both enjoy! So, grab a bottle of wine, pick out a movie to stream together, and enjoy each other’s company!
8. Be Honest When Something Is Bothering You
Don’t sugarcoat your perspective or emotions because you’re afraid to verbalize them over long-distance. It’s okay to have uncomfortable conversations while you’re apart. In fact, being straightforward when something is bothering you creates a stronger bond and spark between you and your partner. Both partners in long-term relationships need to know they have a safe, trusting space to share their genuine emotions and feelings in different scenarios.
9. Gift Your Partner a Subscription Box
Subscription boxes are a great way to deal with loneliness in a long-distance relationship. Both of you find something the other enjoys (cooking, wine, cheese, coffee, almost anything is available as a subscription box)! Then, every month when you each open your box, you’ll have smiles on your faces thinking of how much you love each other! You could even use this method to try out a new hobby.
10. Take Advantage of Some Quality You Time
When signs of loneliness seem so overwhelming, take advantage of the time you can spend cultivating solid friendships with your family, roommates, or best friend. Instead of feeling hopeless and frustrated because you can’t be with your partner all the time, think of fun things you’ve always wanted to do but never had the time. Have you tried to learn pottery? Sign up for a class! Is there a book club you’ve wanted to attend? Join the club!
11. Create a Scrapbook for Both of You To Enjoy
Distract yourself from feelings of loneliness by creating a scrapbook of all of the beautiful times you’ve had with your long-distance partner. Include relationship souvenirs such as postcards from trips, love notes, or cards you’ve sent each other over the years. Create one for each of you, so if you start feeling discouraged from loneliness, you will have an instant reminder that the distance is entirely worth it!
12. Start a Journal
Grab your journal and pour your heart out when you start to feel the ache of loneliness in a long-distance relationship. Expressing your thoughts and feelings through writing everything down can help process your emotions and help you overcome any negative or depressing thoughts.
It’s important to vent and release any unhealthy ideas you may not have realized you were harboring. Find a super cute journal just for your long-distance relationship so one day you can look back over your thoughts and remember how difficult the time apart was and how thankful you are nearby now.
13. Send More Photos of Your Daily Routine
Although it’s always fun to receive photos from your long-distance partner, a great way to deal with loneliness in a long-distance relationship is sending pictures of more of your day when one or both of you is feeling particularly lonely. It’s easy to take advantage of your relationship when it’s long-distance because you both can be involved as you’d like considering your communication and is mainly through technology.
However, the downside to being somewhat lackadaisical when there’s the distance between you is that you can battle feelings of loneliness a lot quicker than in other relationships. One of the best ways to cope with loneliness in a long-distance relationship is by sending photos as you go about your day, so you feel closer. For example, you may not drink your morning coffee together but be sure to send a picture of the mug you’re using. Sharing bits of each other’s life is essential when the other person can’t be there in person.
Tip: don’t worry about your photography skills or feelings of your partner not wanting to get pictures of the mundane parts of your life. Your partner loves you and will love any picture you send them throughout your day!
14. Make a Surprise visit
Making a surprise visit may not always be possible, depending on how far away your partner lives and their schedule. However, a surprise visit can lift your spirits entirely when you’re feeling particularly lonely. Be sure to leave little surprise notes around your partner’s house when you leave so they’ll have little reminders of you for weeks to come.
15. Mix Up Your Communication
Last but certainly not least, our Lovebox for lovers is the perfect way to deal with loneliness in a long-distance relationship! Our connected messaging device is a personalized reminder to your significant other that you love them and are always there for them no matter how many miles are between you.
So, how does it work? Using our free, user-friendly app, you create your cute message with pictures, personalized stickers, drawings, and even postcards! The heart of your loved one's Lovebox will spin when they receive your message. After reading your love note, your partner can spin the heart and send you back a waterfall of hearts on the app.
All in all, loneliness, at times, can be a daunting, discouraging feeling when in a long-distance relationship. But finding ways to deal with loneliness is entirely doable when you genuinely love someone! Communication is vital, as is consistent communication. Have a designated time in both of your schedules to stay close.
By implementing a few patterns into your long-distance routine, you will find the best ways to deal with loneliness. Write letters, have virtual dates, and start a scrapbook of the most significant moments in your relationship and you’ll be well on your way to a healthy, fulfilled long-distance relationship.
Overcoming loneliness and feeling emotionally connected in a long-distance relationship is entirely possible. Implementing any of the above ways of dealing with loneliness will guarantee closeness between you and your partner!
We hope our tips help you deal with loneliness and that you are well on your way to feeling hopeful!