How to make long-distance relationships suck less

One of the hardest parts about moving away to a university is leaving your friends and family behind. This might be your parents or your best friend, but sometimes this means your significant otter. I have ran into many people at California State University, Monterey Bay (CSUMB) that are in long-distance relationships, myself included, and the general consensus is: they suck.

It’s not the person that you’re with who sucks, because chances are if you are maintaining a long-distance relationship, you love that person a lot. Most people don’t try long-distance relationships when they first start dating, or if they barely know the person. So we know that whoever is waiting for you to fi nish school and come back home to them loves you, and that you love them.

It’s the distance that sucks. One of the key elements to being in a relationship is the need for comfort and physical touch.

As human beings, we desire to be hugged, kissed and cuddled. It’s in our nature, and it’s something we crave. It’s naive to say that people should just “get over it,” because distance is one of the main reasons as to why people cheat. People tend to cheat when they yearn for a physical touch, and they aren’t getting that touch from their significant other.

One way of getting over this need for physical touch is by petting a dog. There are dogs everywhere! Find a fluffy pal, and radiate all of your love and warmth towards that dog (or maybe a cat, if you’re a cat person). Don’t have a dog? Go to a local dog park, there’s one in East Campus. If you’re not creepy, people will let you pet their dog.

Don’t feel like being a creep at the East Campus dog park? Go to one of the local dog shelters and pretend you want to adopt a dog, or just ask if you can play with one for a bit. Dog shelters try to get people to play with their dogs to get the dog used to being around people.

Another way to get over needing physical touch is having a friend give you a hug. If you don’t have a friend that can give you a squeeze, I’m sure you can find someone on campus that would gladly help you out with your hug needs—a hug-dealer of sorts. I have never had my hug requests rejected, but just make sure you kind of know the person. Maybe don’t ask strangers? Or do, I don’t care. Whatever helps.

Another problem with long-distance relationships is the disconnect that comes from not being surrounded by that person. Before you moved away, you were probably very close to your significant other because you shared the same friends, or you spent most of your time together. Now, you and your partner might be having trouble because you aren’t so sure of what to talk about anymore. The way to overcome this dilemma is to start making plans for when you go back home.

It might seem like an eternity from now, but summer is coming fast. Soon, you’ll be packing up and moving back home for three months.

Making plans with your significant other is a great way to connect. Your plans don’t have to be at a Red Lobster, or super pricey in general. Your date could be something like a day at the beach, where you plan together what you’ll have for lunch and whose car you’ll be taking. Just think of little things that can help you spark an interesting conversation.

Or, you can go all out. Plan a trip to an amusement park, or to a different state. Romantic getaways are always a sure-fire way to spark conversation. You can talk about all the fun things you want to do together, and things you might not like might come up as well. Making plans, as well as communicating about topics that are constructive can help you feel closer together.

Another effective strategy to being long-distance lovers is spontaneous gifts. They don’t have to be expensive or super thoughtful, but sometimes receiving something small can show your significant other that you care. Does your bae love Snapchat? Make them a geotag, and set it for their house. This can cost as little as $3 and is a cute way to show your bae that you care.

What is your partner’s favorite candy? Mail it to them. Candy is $1 at Dollar Tree, and most small packages will fit in an envelope with a regular stamp. Send them a little note that says, “Thinking of you.” Most importantly: DON’T TELL THEM YOU SENT IT. That way, a cute message surprises them in the mail and makes them feel loved.

You might be thinking to yourself, “These are all things I’m doing for them, I want them to do these cute things for me!” Here is your solution. Send them this article and say, “Thinking of you.” Cut this article out of the paper and mail it to them, or send them the article via

Hopefully they’ll actually read it and start sending you cute things, or planning things with you. You deserve to feel more loved. If you were sent this article by someone you love, or your significant other, they are trying to send you a message. That message is “I love you. I miss you. Long-distance sucks. Let’s make it better.”

If you’re someone who received this article, I recommend you do something cute and different for your bae. Remember that everyone speaks a different love language, so sometimes gifts don’t always have to extraordinary. The little things are cute and work equally as well. Also, remember that conversation and connection can go a long way, because once you lose those two things, there’s not much left.

Good luck, my otters. Go pet a puppy and send love to your significant other.

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