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Transatlantic Life

Reuniting: Advice For Long-Distance Couples

If you’ve ever been in a long-distance relationship or you’re in one now; you probably already know that coming together after time spent apart is one of the most anticipated aspects of loving at a distance. So, what should you be aware of before you see each other again?

Whether people meet online or are separated by circumstance (study, work or military service, etc.), long-distance relationships are a factor of life for many couples. Being face-to-face after miles/time away can take a little more planning and thought than some realize. Here are a few things to consider before visiting or reuniting permanently with your partner …


Surround yourself with people who care about you. Not just those who say it, but those who show it. | Alex Elle

It’s Going To Be Awkward

This one is inevitable particularly if you’ve been kept apart for longer periods  — like months or years. Feeling nervous or out of sync with each other is normal and typically resolves itself once you’ve spent time with each other; embrace the nerves and excitement that comes from re-establishing a connection.

You Need Time To Talk

Adjusting to being in each other’s presence requires patience and a plan, especially for the day you actually meet up. Allowing time for chatting and doing simple activities together is essential; use this as an opportunity to catch up on the things you’ve missed. Ideally, to help focus on getting to know each other again, there should be no interruptions (if possible).    

Some Things Will Have Changed

Physical, emotional or situational transformations in life are expected. We all make choices and changes over time or experience shifts in circumstances that impact us in various ways; usually with our partner’s involvement or support. But being separated by distance or time zones can leave them feeling like they’re a passive observer to the changes we make — essentially further complicating a period of adjustment for getting to know the ‘new you’ (which can be stressful). The last thing you want to develop when coming together after a long-distance relationship is for you or your significant other to feel alienated. This is when you need to communicate and spend quality moments with each other and reintroduce yourselves. You can even utilize this as an excellent excuse (not that you need one) to discover alternative ways of exploring and expressing your love and romance.

Unfortunately, this can represent a time that some couples start to have doubts about whether or not this is a union they want to maintain — especially if one/both people involved have grown or changed in a way that fundamentally alters key dynamics. A period of acclimation is to be expected when settling into a routine; but if there’s inner conflict and doubt that cannot be worked through, it may be time to call it quits.

Two women of colour stand face-to-face together with one planting an affectionate kiss on the other’s nose.
photo via Tim Samuel/Canva

Manage Your Expectations

It’s all too easy to get caught up in the potential allure of big romantic moments when finally closing the distance; but managing expectations is key to its overall success. Joy, happiness, intimacy and excitement will be present when establishing relationship foundations but so will annoyance and frustration. Some behaviours and habits will irritate you — that’s a given in any type of relationship — so you have to make space for accepting this.

Useful Article | Signs That You’re In a Healthy Relationship – Very Well Mind

Maintain Your Independence

When living apart, there’s a clear division between personal time and the time you devote to your relationship. Coming together again can disrupt your hobbies and routines; possibly leaving you with fewer opportunities to define your individuality. Setting fresh boundaries that maintain independence as situations change, is something everyone should implement — especially when settling into a post-reunion relationship. Find a way to develop space for your own life/needs while setting aside time to be together.

Prepare For The Future

You don’t need to have life figured out or identify exactly what the next steps are; but it does help to know whether or not, as a couple, you’re still on the same wavelength. Working towards understanding this through open and honest communication is enormously significant. Don’t be afraid to ask questions or advocate for yourself if you want to know where the relationship is heading (even if you’re married, engaged or dating) — and encourage your partner to do the same. From there you can both make a decision about what the future looks like.

The right one will make you fall in love with yourself too. | Dhiman

Transitioning from a long-distance relationship to being together again can produce some unique obstacles that make navigating this new chapter quite frustrating or nerve-wracking — but don’t allow that to put you off from trying to build something fulfilling and loving. If you’ve discovered the right person, reuniting after being apart can represent the start of something wonderful.

Have you ever been in a long-distance relationship? Did you successfully close the distance?

Further Info:

25 Best Tips on Making a Long-Distance Relationship Work – Healthline

20 thoughts on “Reuniting: Advice For Long-Distance Couples”

  1. Great points! The out-of-sync feeling is one I can relate to. Last year my husband was away for work more than he was home, and while I missed him a lot, I felt annoyed at losing some independence when he returned. Years ago, he and I were in a long-distance relationship for about 3 months before he joined me. We met and married within 9 months. That was 26 years ago! I started reading your blog right before you moved to the US. Time flies!


  2. Great advice Molly. Managing expectations is a really great tip. We often get caught up in our own imagination of how things should be rather than allowing things to happen naturally, and that often results in disappointment and frustrations. That’s where having conversations and open communication is helpful. I also adore the quote that you shared from Dhiman.


  3. Although I’ve never directly experienced this it certainly sounds like you’ve covered things well. When I read this, I cannot help but think of the 5 years of separation my Grandparents endured when my Grandpa went off to fight in WWII. He was injured near the end of the war and was delayed in his return.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I often think of couples who went through an LDR during those times because of war too and how difficult it must have been in an age when the technology so many of us rely on now to maintain contact didn’t exist. What an incredible experience your grandparents must have endured!


  4. Long distance relationships are more a feature of life than they used to be, but I can’t help but wonder how those separated during WW2 and other conflicts coped. Servicemen were overseas for years without the possibility of leave and couples had to rely on letters and newspapers. Families were torn apart by conflict and policies, sometimes without even knowing where their loved ones were, or whether they were alive. I wonder how couples are coping as a consequence of the war in Ukraine.


  5. This was a well put together article. Yes, I have, and all of these steps were necessary once coming together. It took some months, but things got much better. It requires serious patience. If it’s meant to be things will be fine.


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