By guest blogger Erica Scime
Relationships are tough at the best of times. When you and your significant other are attending faraway schools, things are even tougher. Last year, I moved to downtown Toronto to study at Ryerson University and my boyfriend, Sam, moved to Oakville to attend Sheridan College. The following are a few pieces of advice coming from a girl who has made all the mistakes for you.
Beware the Dangers of Texting
Receiving a quick “I love you” text in the middle of class can make you smile. A convoluted “Jusdt leaving the bar baabe. Whasts up?” at 3:00 a.m. can make you feel sick. The problem with texting – in any relationship – is that its brevity and lack of intonation leaves far too much room for over-analysis. That sarcastic joke will be taken literally and that meaningless remark will be deconstructed.
Find Ways to Communicate
It may sound obvious, but communication is key to making a long-distance relationship work. You need to find what works for you. For Sam and I, it’s lengthy e-mails detailing what we made for dinner, the inane comments of the girl sitting next to him in class and the flavour of ice cream I’m currently devouring. They may not be profound love letters but a candid e-mail can help keep your significant other filled in on the entertaining details of your day.
Do Things Together… Virtually
When you and your significant other are together, you aren’t sitting on opposite sides of a table having hour-long conversations. Chances are, you’re doing things – cooking, watching a movie, playing Pictionary perhaps. That’s why when you’re sitting at your computer on Skype, things get old fast. Instead, set up Skype in the kitchen and cook dinner together. Watch the same movie while you chat on MSN. You can even play online iSketch together! Shared experiences like these can make you feel like you’re together when you’re hundreds of kilometers apart.
Don’t Forget the Long Distance Lovin’
If the thought of phone sex makes you cringe or yawn, you’re not alone. (Especially for those of us visual types.) So what is a girl or guy to do when their partner’s most pleasurable assets are unavailable? For a little live action, webcams can be a great alternative to awkward phone sex calls. Dirty text messages, otherwise known as “sexts”, are another playful way to spice up a boring lecture. However, my personal favorite (and Sam’s!) are nude photos. Try sending a couple naughty pictures to your guy or girl’s inbox to get them thinking about you and build anticipation for the next time you see each other – just make sure they aren’t in class when they open them. Again, trust me on this. Photos of you in various stages of undress also make a great visual aid for after class.
Go the Distance as Much as Possible
Though funds are tight and schedules are hectic, it’s important to make the effort to see each other as often as possible. If you and your significant other are in the same province, make good use of the GO train. If not, save up for a trip over winter break or reading week. Knowing that you will eventually see each other will give you both something to look forward to.
Photo by Jasmine Pazzano[audio:26_09_2010.mp3]