You just met someone online, whether through Tinder or any other online platform, and they’re great. So great in fact that you’ve been talking for months now and you could really see yourself with them. The only problem...you don’t live near each other. This then poses the reality of having a long-distance relationship.
Many people hear that term and groan at the idea. And of course, it’s not the ideal situation, but it’s also not the worst one either! Countless couples have successfully had long-distance relationships. About 55% of Americans that have been in long-distance relationships have said that their time apart actually made them feel closer to their partner, and roughly seven out of 10 people said that they actually talked to their partner more during these times apart.
So you guys have been dating for a little while being long-distance. But of course, you want to also meet in person! The time has come for that. A lot of nerves, anxiety, and anticipation are probably building up. You’re feeling overwhelmed and maybe psyching yourself out.
Don’t panic! These feelings are normal. Long-distance relationship meetings can be nerve-wracking. But we’ve got you covered. Today we’ll be discussing what you should expect for your first time meeting in person and how to get ready for the big meet.
Expect Lots of Emotions
Heart racing, hand sweating, and nervous laughing. These are just a few of the traits you’re sure to feel when you meet your partner for the first time if you two met online and have begun a long-distance relationship.
There will probably be a lot of expectation and unneeded pressure on this first exchange. It most likely won’t be like a romance movie where your eyes meet across the airport and you drop your bags, running across the lobby and into each other’s arms. This isn’t The Notebook reincarnated, so don’t expect that.
The first time meeting will probably be a tad awkward—and that’s perfectly okay! You two might not know how to “properly” hug or kiss yet because you never have before. Don’t put false expectations on your partner or yourself to be a certain way. Be yourself because, in the end, that’s who your partner really fell for. Give each other the time to be awkward, fumble on words, and mess up holding your hand for the first little bit.
Usually, the worst part of any first meeting is the anticipation. The famous quote by Mark Twain states, “I have experienced many troubles in my life, most of which never happened.”
The actual meeting and seeing each other usually goes smoothly, but the real anxiety comes from the waiting and the impatience that arises from just wanting to hug them and see them with your own eyes. Expect your heart to be thumping in your chest but also expect to be smiling from ear to ear when you do finally see them.
Have a Fun Plan of Activities To Do
Meeting up in the middle or flying out to their city? Either way, plan a fun day full of activities that you two can do together! The list is really endless and should be tailored to you and your partner’s interests and also what is available in the place you are, but here are a few ideas!
Get a coffee together. Seeing someone’s coffee order tells a lot about a person. Sit and chat about the journey you had on the way to each other and sip on your macchiato.
Roam a bookstore. Scan through some books as you walk alongside your partner and show them funny book covers you see or visit the classics section and tell them the ones you’ve read.
Grab a drink and watch some live music. Listening to music together is a great way to spend time together and you two could even dance with the band.
Mini-golf, go-karts, games, oh my! There are lots of places that have activities like slot machines, pizza, and mini-golf for you guys to play all day long. This is a great way to have fun while also showing your competitive side.
Drive-in movie with your favorite candy. Switch up watching a normal movie by going to a drive-in movie instead. Cuddle up and pop out some Twizzlers and enjoy your time together.
Explore the town. Whatever city you guys find yourselves in, explore it! If your partner flew out to your hometown, show them around your favorite places to eat and where you went to high school. If you guys are seeing a new city together, walk around some parks and get a feel for the city.
No matter what activities you guys have planned when you first see each other, it will be perfect because you’ll be together, and that’s really all that matters.
Preparation for the Big Day
The big day of meeting each other is coming up and you’re wondering if there’s anything you should be doing to prepare. Hair done? Check. Nails done? Check. Plane ticket booked, car filled up, bags packed? Check, check, and check. So why do you feel so… empty-handed?
Well, it might be because you are! Maybe your hand needs something in it, something like the perfect gift for your significant other perhaps? Of course, gifts are not necessary, but they’re a sweet way to greet someone and let them know you care for them.
Now there’s the stress of finding the perfect gift...don’t worry! We’ve got some great gift ideas that will be sure to make your partner happy.
Movie Night Set
The time will come when you guys will have to part ways until the next time you see one another. But a great gift idea could be creating your own makeshift movie night set that you guys can enjoy together that includes the movie you want to watch, their favorite candy, popcorn, and you can even throw in some cool glasses or a funky straw that they have to use during your long-distance virtual date night.
This is a wonderful way to show your partner that you’re excited to continue the relationship and navigate the trickiness of long-distance relationships.
A “Photo” Scrapbook
This might sound odd since you guys wouldn’t have any photos together just yet, but hear us out. Instead of creating a photo album filled with photos of just the two of you, put pictures of places in the scrapbook that you two want to visit together.
This could include pictures of the beautiful beaches of Malibu, California, the Rocky Mountains in Tennessee, the turquoise, see-through water of Greece, one of the Wonders of the World like the Taj Mahal in India, or any other destination that you guys have talked about going to. Leave room beside the photo for when you guys do end up going there, and you can update it!
This would most likely be a great gift for a couple that has been dating for quite some time and are just now meeting in person. Maybe this wouldn’t be the best option if you just met a few weeks ago.
Making something that is specific to your partner is a sweet and romantic way to show them that you care for them and know them well.
It could be a mug, t-shirt, socks, jewelry, an art print, or anything else. Get something with your faces on it for a funny gag gift, or do something a little more serious like an art print that shows what the night sky would have looked like when you met. These personalized gifts are a great way for them to bring something home with them so you don’t feel as far.
The Lovebox is an incredible gift to give someone that not only can be personalized but also shows intentionality and creates a unique way to have conversations.
Known as the world’s first love note messenger, the Lovebox is a small, wooden box that has a digital screen underneath the lid. On that screen, the possibilities are endless. You can…
- Send photos or draw directly on the photos
- Send love notes and schedule them ahead of time
- Send drawings
- Save all your love notes on the app
- Send personalized stickers
It’s all streamlined through the free app where you can send everything from. When you do finally send off your special love note through the app, the heart on the front of the Lovebox will spin so your partner knows they’ve received it. This creates anticipation and excitement for what could possibly be in their Lovebox.
With the Lovebox, you can even schedule when you want to send out the love notes, or set reminders for yourself to do it. You can also save all of the love notes you made and drew on the app so you can keep them forever.
The gift of a Lovebox is a great way to make communication unique and fun once you both return home. It’s personable, creative, interactive, and a great way to show your partner you’re thinking of them throughout the day!
Soak Up Every Moment
The time you guys get to share together will most likely go by incredibly fast—too fast. It will feel like not enough time because there isn’t ever enough time with someone you love. Instead of wallowing and thinking about the day you’ll have to be separated, try instead to soak up every moment you have together.
This can look different for everyone. Whether this means putting your phone away to avoid any distractions or reminders of home or work, or always having your phone’s camera open so you can take a bunch of sweet, funny photos and videos that you can look back on when you guys part ways at the end of the trip. Just be present with one another, which can occur by being curious about each other that involves asking questions, but most of all listening to each other when each of you speaks.
Everyone cherishes memories differently. And remember that although the time is going by incredibly fast, you guys will see each other in person soon enough. But tears and many hugs are normal when you depart—just try to focus on the next time you’ll see one another to get through it.
So the time has come where you guys have to catch your flights or start driving back home. Of course, this time will be sad and you’ll most likely be dreading it, but a great way to help ease the pain is to plan ahead for next time.
Planning what you guys want to do next when you see each other, and specifically when it will happen can help to make saying goodbye less sad because you know you’ll see them in “x” amount of time! Due to budgeting and money costs, the likelihood you’ll be able to meet up next weekend probably isn’t too high. Instead, try for a month from then or even a few months from then.
Brainstorm ideas of where you guys would like to explore and what you’d like to do next time you’re together. It could be anything from exploring the Grand Canyon National park, taking a nice and relaxing beach weekend in Florida, or simply visiting one of your families to finally introduce your partner to them.
Think of it as an exciting adventure you guys get to have together. Yes, you’ll have to spend some time apart and you won’t be able to go meet them for lunch, but you’ll be able to do that soon enough if you plan ahead. This way when you finally say goodbye, you don’t have to say “bye,” you can just say, “see you soon”.
See You Soon
The last hug and departing kiss are happening and you’re probably feeling a lot of emotions. Anywhere from sadness, to thankfulness, to anticipation for the next time you guys can be physically together.
The time you spent together probably didn’t all go to plan, and the expectations you had coming into your first meeting maybe weren’t exactly met (AKA feeling like you’re in the middle of a Nicholas Sparks novel), but it was still an incredible time with just the two of you.
Instead of goodbye, say see you soon, and you two will absolutely see each other soon.
7 Tips for Practicing Presence in Your Relationship | Schan Farber
Long-distance relationships are more successful than you think | NY Post
8 Best Tips to Make a Long-Distance Relationship Work | Time