Take it from someone who's spent way too many years in LDRs (long-distance relationships): they can really and truly suck. Don't ever do one unless you absolutely have to. And if you find your interest piqued by pretty much anyone who lives outside your immediate five-mile radius, please refer to the list below about why your star-crossed love affair is actually trying to kill you, and then seriously reconsider.
1. Communication is 110% more important than it would be at close range.
And really, who has even learned to effectively communicate yet? When all you’ve got is talk for weeks on end, you have to be pretty good at it. I actually prefer to have hours-long passive aggressive staring contests with my boyfriend, instead of talking through our issues. It has been working really well for us so far.
2. You can sort of “let yourself go."
Which is cool for about a day, until it gets depressing. Last Friday, I tumbled alllllll the way down the Williamsburg rabbit hole. There, inside a laser machine-illuminated fort made of stoner tapestries, was an underwear party. It was much like a regular party, except everyone was in only their underwear. (Honestly, Brooklyn?) Sadly, I did not partake because, as a bona fide LDR frump, I simply do not groom when my boyfriend is out of town. We’re not just talking hairy legs here — try showering thrice weekly, donning high-waisted grandma undies as a rule, and pulling socks from the dirty pile as often as not.
3. There is an inordinate amount of pressure placed on your time together.
You know what makes a weekend tons of fun? Idealizing it in your head for several weeks, and then refusing to be flexible about your agenda when the weekend finally arrives, and then getting really disappointed when things don’t go exactly according to plan, and then giving your partner the cold shoulder and refusing to explain why you’re upset, and then having a horrible — wait, no, that actually sounds like the least fun anyone has ever had in the history of fun.
4. Your friends are inevitably at a glamorous orgy party or a secret underground rave every weekend that you’re out of town with the SO.
Well, that’s what it feels like anyway. Meanwhile, on the weekends when I am around, they’re often “feeling a Pad Thai and Netflix night.” Awesome. Great planning, team.
5. Your partner is inevitably at a glamorous orgy party or a secret underground rave every weekend you’re in your own town.
Honestly, FOMO is a very uncool buzzword, and relationship FOMO is even uncooler, and I do not ever want to be the sort of person who admits to experiencing relationship FOMO. This is why I think it would be best for my boyfriend to stay home 24/7, where he could partake in strictly non-FOMO-inducing activities, such as eating saltines without water, watching action movies, and pining for me. But this is the real world, and in the real world there are underwear parties in forts, and when you are invited to them, you kind of have to go — with or without your partner.
6. Timing your period is a thing that you actually have to think about.
Back in high school, when period sex was just not a conversation, my friend tried to push back her period when her long-distance hookup came to town. Going on advice from a reliable source on homeopathic period-delayers (Yahoo Answers), she drank an entire bottle of lemon juice straight from the bottle. Dear 16-year-old self: skipping a week of sugar pills is more effective than a citrus-kegstand, every time.
That said, playing around with your birth control means you’re manipulating hormones, which can get very American Horror Story (spotting and weeks-long periods? No, thanks). I mean, this is not an unsolvable problem — you can either postpone the mean reds, have chill period sex, or keep it in your pants — but it does require consideration and planning, both of which cut into watching The Vampire Diaries while binge-eating string cheese.
7. The no-sex/all-the-sex nature of an LDR can make women more susceptible to UTIs.
Did you know that a great way to get a bladder infection is to interrupt weeks of celibacy with occasional weekends of boning like rabbits? Like, you’ve just been waiiiiting and waiting, and you finally get to be together, and it’s just as incredible as you knew it would be, and then, BAM, UTI! And you can’t even sit comfortably for the next few days, let alone have pleasant sex! Isn’t life funny? Hey, why is the flesh melting off your face like that?
8. Skype freezes at the worst possible times.
“Mm, oh, OH, I’m so close, I’m so – wait, baby? Baby, I think you’re frozen again. Hello? Crap, are you still there?!” Which is all about THIS frustrating: