In this era of skyping and texting, maintaining a long distance relationships may seem easier than it was in the past. However, long distance relationships still come with numerous challenges,and are difficult to navigate. Most people say they’d never consider a long-distance relationship, but that’s usually before they don’t have a choice.
They say love has no boundaries, but when perhaps there’s around 17,000km of land and sea between you, it can be somewhat frustrating.
And that’s the reality for 28-year-old Liz and Josh, who are in a long-term relationship on opposite sides of the world.
The pair first met in their early twenties when they went to university together, where they ended up living together in a shared house of seven other students.
The duo kept hitting it off just as friends until they reached their late twenties — when Liz was working in public relations, and Josh in interior design — that they decided they wanted something more.
At the time, both were living in London. Liz and Josh went on a date and they eventually fell head over heels for each other. But barely a week after making their relationship official, Liz made the move to Sydney.
Liz explains that while the distance does make the heart grow fonder, there are other challenges around dating someone living on the other side of the world.
“We call each other each morning and evening,” she told news.com.au. We also send a couple of voice notes to each other each day, which is a bit more personal.
“We organise date nights on weekends through Skype and video chat. We do it while I’m cooking dinner and he’s having breakfast.
“The hardest thing about communicating is being on the move or working, so we make sure to find a time when we are both relaxed. That keeps the similarities between a normal relationship.”
A New study from eharmony reveals that, despite being the primal vehicle of long-distance relationships in the past, the art of letter writing is all but dead. Only a tiny fraction of people still profess or communicate with a love interest in this way.
Nonetheless, younger daters are more likely than the older generation (46 per cent) to be in a long-distance relationship – clearly a resultant of global connectivity and digital dating.
In the 21st century, lovers can send letters instantaneously over email, and place long distance calls over Wi-Fi.
You can stream the same movies, at the same time or even play board games one-on-one.
Josh also said they have managed to keep the love alive the last six months apart courtesy of surprise gestures or meals delivered straight to each other’s door.
“Liz has sent me lunch when I’ve been having a bad day, which really makes you feel more connected,” he said.
“We make sure to speak and see each other’s face, and we are very good at surprising each other.
“Liz has sent me doughnuts, and I have used Booktopia to send her books because things can arrive within the hour.
“But we are traditional, and we will send a physical letter to each other as well.”
Liz confessed that the hardest part is lack of physical contact between the two, but being apart has meant they have been able to “build up a good foundation” which is often put to the side when couples are together all of the time.
“The tricky thing is physical contact, and having eye contact,” she said.
“Very often on the phone you feel like there is silence, which is a tricky element to get over. “Using video calls, we might not speak for five minutes but we have each other’s company. What is hard is knowing how long can this last.
“But when you put plans in place, that can put too much pressure on yourself, which can happen in relationships when talking about the future and not focusing on right now.
“We have said take it a month at a time, and because of that the last 13 months have gone really well.”