I’ve interviewed a few close friends about their experiences with reuniting with long distance lovers. These are their stories.
So you’ve won. You’ve met an incredibly cool/hot/interesting/(insert your positive adjective of choice) person abroad, and this person wants to be in a relationship with you. This is great; however, it comes with obvious challenges. It’s hard to be away from the one you love, especially when you don’t know when you will see them next. Some couples get used to a relationship of exchanging letters, checking world clocks, and organizing Skype dates. Therefore, it can be a little disorienting to regain your footing in a relationship when the physical distance is closed. I’ve interviewed a few close friends about their experiences with reuniting with long distance lovers. These are their stories.
Veronica met Jesús in Ecuador. After being together for about four months they had to part as their travels led them to different corners of the world. They talked on the phone about once a week, exchanged emails and text messages, but never spoke via FaceTime or Skype because seeing each other made them miss each other too much. After three months apart, Veronica made the 12-hour journey from Connecticut to Argentina to see Jesús again. While on the plane she mentally prepared herself for the reunion. Her mind was invaded by doubts as she awaited Jesús in the arrival section of the airport: she worried that he would forget her, intentionally abandon her, or –the ultimate fear- show up only to break up with her. However, he coolly arrived at the airport to greet her (not on time, but he did indeed showed up). She was torn between matching his calm demeanor and running up and jumping on him. During her week in Argentina, her relationship was the best it ever had been. They had to warm up to each other a little bit, but they felt a heightened affection for each together since they knew that they would be separated again soon. At the end of her stay, it was especially tough saying goodbye, as they had gotten so much closer over that week. Now communication between the couple is a bit shaky because Jesús – a true jetsetter- is currently living with limited electricity in South Africa, but the pair will be reunited again this summer.
Berta is currently in Sevilla, Spain. She left behind a gaggle of doting friends (myself included) and her boyfriend of nearly six months. While apart, they mainly talked via Facebook Messenger during the week and Skyped or Facetimed over the weekends. The time difference between Spain and her hometown of Los Angeles was especially challenging: when she woke up, we were going to be or were already asleep. So it was difficult for them to schedule Skype dates. After three months apart her boyfriend Bobby flew to Europe to visit her. The pair met up in Rome for a romantic getaway. At first, being together felt very surreal for Berta, especially since they were both tired from traveling. However, before long they felt completely reconnected as if no time had passed since they had last been together.
Lastly, there is Dora. She met her petit-ami (that’s French for “boyfriend,” #cultured) in Paris. In case you were wondering, yes, there is indeed a lot of stripe-wearing in this relationship. To the point, Dora and Sam were together for a couple months before she had to return to the United States. The couple have stayed together, mainly keeping in touch through messaging and calling over the Internet. The experience has taught Dora patience because she knew that it would be a while before reuniting with Sam. After being apart for four months, Sam came to visit her in New York. She admittedly was nervous about seeing him, and feared that she wouldn’t feel the same way about him after all this time. After a few days together, they felt even more in sync, even better than how they left things in France. Having her boyfriend from overseas come visit her has made the relationship feel more real. The simple act of introducing him to her friends and showing him her world has laid a concrete foundation for the rest of their relationship. Ultimately, they live on different continents and the future is uncertain, but at least they face it together.