As a therapist who works with couples and relationships, I know how challenging it can be to maintain a strong connection when distance is a factor. But fear not! There are plenty of ways to keep the love alive and build trust – even when you’re miles apart.
Keep the conversation going
The first step to maintaining trust in a long-distance relationship is to keep a healthy level of conversation going. This means getting to know your partner on a deeper level – ask each other questions about your likes and dislikes, goals for the future, and respond when one reaches out to the other. Use multiple methods of communication. This allows for that natural variance in the tones and moods of your interactions. Talking on the phone is good for connecting through the sound of your loved one’s voice. You can pick up on cues that they may be excited about something or have had a rough day, helping you maintain that feeling of closeness. Texting is great for a quick, light-hearted chat or to let them know, “I’m thinking of you.” Email can be an opportunity for thoughtful discussion on more reflective topics.
Make time for each other
Another important factor in building trust is to make each other a priority. Set aside specific time for each other, plan shared experiences like a streaming movie watch party or having the same meal while on the phone together. Have agreed upon check-ins. These small gestures can make a big difference in maintaining a sense of closeness and building trust.
Being open and honest with each other about your feelings is also crucial in maintaining trust. Celebrating milestones, sending surprises, and sharing both happy and difficult times can help you feel supported and connected to your partner.
Sharing your daily calendar – or keeping a joint calendar – can also help you understand each other’s schedules and needs while giving each other space when necessary. Introducing your partner to your friends and family can also help build trust by expanding their support system and allowing them to understand your life and relationships outside of your partnership.
Finally, planning your next visit can give both of you something to look forward to and keep the relationship growing and moving forward.
Remember, distance doesn’t have to be a barrier to building trust in your relationship. By prioritizing intentional communication, making time for each other, and being open and honest, you can build a strong foundation of trust and maintain a fulfilling long-distance relationship.