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Wise Guys: Can Long-Distance Relationships Ever Work?

Tue, Oct 16, 2012

Advice, Wise Guys

photo via flickr

Advice from Ask the Wise Guys
Your Own Question!
three of EMandLO.com’s guy friends. This week they answer the following: Can long-distance relationships ever work? If so, how, and for how long?

Single Straight Guy (Colin Adamo of Hooking Up & Staying Hooked): Some people like the structured aspect of a relationship: getting off from work, heading home, cooking dinner, and talking to their sweetheart to find out what s/he did today. And this can all be achieved with distance. For some people, this isn’t boring at all. It’s like the missionary position of relationships — many of us would sigh at its boredom, but for some couples it really does the trick. If you need a few more metaphorical positions in your romantic interactions, this set up just isn’t sustainable. If you know it’s going to be less than a year or that you can commute back and forth every other weekend, you can probably bring enough energy to the relationship to make it last. Otherwise you might need to switch positions (with other people).

Married Straight Guy (Irad Eyal of Sexdegrees.net): Long-distance relationships work in the same way that a stopped clock is right two times a day — if your relationship is destined to last 60 days, but you only see each other one weekend a month, you’re looking at a two-and-a-half year affair. The good news is you’re in a perpetual honeymoon phase! But if you conclude that a strong relationship would ipso facto last thousands of years in long-distance mode, you’re good at math, but you’re also wrong. The danger comes at the point when a relationship with potential gets stymied by its own slow smolder. It’s a fire starved for fuel— if it can’t progress, it will die a slow, painful death. Like this mixed metaphor.

terence_100Committed Gay Guy (Terence): I’ve been with my beau for 13 years, six months and 10 days as of today. I’m the one who celebrates the sixth month mark. He doesn’t have a clue. We spent years 3, 4, 5, and 6 on completely different continents — as you do when America’s homophobic immigration policies won’t let your Australian lover stay in the country or marry you because your relationship is not as real, dignified or deserving as your heterosexual counterparts — who, I might add, can order a bride online from some far off place and live happily ever after in the good ‘ol US of A.

But I digress. The don’t say absence makes the heart grow fonder to be cute. It’s too painful to be cute. But absence does ratchet up the romance and desire exponentially. Think of the reunions. Oh my!

But alas, if the foundation of your relationship ain’t rock solid, and solid for like at least a couple years, then I think you got a whole heap of struggles to make it worth. But if you are solid and have a strong faith in each other mixed with a bit of flexibility, then all you need is a bit of cash for those visits.

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Our “guys” are a rotating group of contributors. Irad Eyal is a writer, TV producer, and founder of celebrity gossip site Sexdegrees.net; Colin Adamo is a recent Yale grad and author/blogger behind Hooking Up & Staying Hooked, the only sex and relationships resource specifically for high school guys; and Terence is an American living in Sydney. To ask the guys your own question, click here.

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2 Responses to “Wise Guys: Can Long-Distance Relationships Ever Work?”

  1. Lily Says:

    Most people want structure and boundaries so I think it can work if you have a ‘plan’. I did long distance for years because I ‘had to’ – I wanted to be with this man and he wanted to be with me. Ending it would have been so much harder than sticking to it was. I think you know when to check our and when to try harder.

  2. It can work Says:

    I was in a long distance relationship with my husband before we were married for 4 years and it was really hard! So much of a long distance relationship is in your head. I wasted a lot of energy wondering when he was going to marry me. But somehow we made it through. Only to be married which was really the toughest part! Actually being together and having to deal with the world. But it’s gotten better every year…..


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