I recently met this girl through a mutual friend. We have been talking and have gotten to know each other pretty well. We went on a trip with our mutual friend and her boyfriend. The trip went well and we hit it off. She lives around 9-11 hours away if you drive. I’m just not sure what steps to take to pursue this relationship. I am used to going on dates but not sure how to keep this relationship going if we can’t see each other more than once every two months. I planned on going to visit her with our mutual friend but I just worry about going too fast.
All summed up, I am foreign to how to pursue a relationship when it starts long distance.
Thanks for your question. Obviously you feel this relationship has some potential. That’s great. Does she feel the same? That would be a good first step. (To find that out, that is) She has to be just as optimistic as you in order for this to get off the ground, because the very nature of a long distance relationship is more intense than a relationship where people are located in the same city. When someone declares they want to try a long distance relationship, they are declaring that they see something special. If she feels as you do, then you’re halfway home.
If she’s open to the idea, then don’t worry about how often you’ll visit, start by trying to talk to her on the phone or by Skype on a regular basis. If she’s willing to put the time in to talk, that will be a good indicator how open she is to seeing where this goes. Email, text, IM are also useful channels to keep communication flowing, but should be used as complements to talking on the phone. Since you’ll probably have differing views on how the communication will “look” that’s something you need to work out. For example: How many days a week will you talk? What time of day? Who will call who? How long will you talk? Yes, the details matter. Put out feelers to her and see what she wants. Remember, you want this to be fun for her, and you, not turn into a chore.
We also think resurrecting the ancient art of letter writing might be useful. Believe us, there’s nothing like getting a hand written letter in the mail. It will show her a different side of you. And an occasional package with a letter might be a neat way to spice things up and give her a little piece of you in between visits. Once again, keep the channels flowing.
Which brings us to visiting. Here, you also need to discuss the details. Believe us, the minutia matters. Insecurity and doubt will creep in quickly if one person is making more of an effort than the other. Issues to discuss: How often will you see each other? Who will pay for the plane or other expenses? (If that factors into the equation.) Will you vacation together? Will you alternate visits? In your case, you might need to be the one who offers to either visit, or pay for her to come see you.
If things progress well—we hope things do—remember what the goal is here. Making a long distance relationship work is only the short term goal. The actual goal is to be in the same city together, enjoying each other and building a life together. We’re not saying you need to create more pressure by throwing that topic into the mix right away, but that should certainly be part of the discussion at some point.
Is this enough to help you get started? Let us know if you have any other questions.
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