Neil Turner's Blog

Blogging about technology and randomness since 2002

Notes on a distant relationship

Exactly 5 months ago today, I entered a distance relationship with Christine. I didn’t intentionally look to enter a distance relationship – it just sort-of happened, as many things in romance do. 5 months on and we’re still very happy together, even if ‘together’ means that there’s 70 miles between us most of the time. I wanted to use this entry to talk about my experience of the relationship and the things that have helped to keep it together.
The pros:
There are some upsides to being a distance relationship. The distance means you have a bit more freedom when you’re not in the same place, so you can go out on an evening for example and not feel so guilty if the other party doesn’t want to go. You need to have rules though, and be able to trust your partner not to do things that you wouldn’t approve of them doing.
I’ve also found that we try to make the most of the time that we are together. While we spend less time together than other couples, the time we do spend is quality time.
The cons:
The travelling can be a drag. Blackpool is just under 2 hours by train from Bradford, however, weekend engineering work can lengthen this to a 4 hour replacement coach journey. While I’m able to take part of Monday morning off to travel, Christine often finds herself on a depressing journey back home on Sunday nights. We’re also fortunate that train tickets, even when bought at the last minute, are cheap for the journey – over longer distances, transport costs may make it prohibitive to see each other regularly.
Saying goodbye after each time you see each other is hard. Even if you know it’ll only be a few days before you see each other again.
If you live alone, it’s very easy to miss the other person. Thankfully I have a couple of housemates, and a generally busy lifestyle, so I have less time to miss Christine. I still miss her though.
Tips:

  • Skype is your friend. You can have long conversations without it costing anything, provided both of you use it.
  • Make the most of the time you are together, but don’t feel like you have to do something all the time – it’ll wear you out.
  • If you travel to see each other a lot by train, get a railcard (if you’re 25 and under) or book your tickets at least a few days in advance to save money. Also consider the coach (especially Megabus).

One Comment

  1. 5 months already!
    I admit, we’re a bit novel in that we started the relationship as almost complete strangers, with just one mutual friend, knowing full well it would be long distance, but I’d not give up Neil for the world.
    I think the key thing is to trust the other person enough to know that they’re there for you. We’ve had an interesting few months what with the arse lump, train works etc, but every second we have spent together has been a time to learn about each other and to enjoy the other’s company.
    Neil is one of the most kind, caring, people I know, and we never run out of things to talk about for long (except mysteriously on SKYPE, when we seem to spend most of the time listening to each other breathing).
    If we get to one year and have the opportunity for another blog post like this, I shall count myself one of the luckiest girls alive. It’s very hard to sum up the feeling I get every time we see eachother, other than one of being home.