When you’re in a long-distance relationship, being apart sucks for a number of reasons, not least of which is that you’re missing out on that all-important physical connection: holding hands, cuddling on the couch, kissing and, of course, having sex.

Long-distance relationships are even more difficult to maintain, and the reasons why they can fail are numerous. Many long-distance relationships certainly succeed, but they require careful navigation from the people involved to steer through the obstacles brought on by geography.

Long-distance relationships can be wonderful, but they can also be difficult. When it comes to long-distance love, it isn’t always built to last. Here, we have listed top 5 reason why long-distance-relationships just don’t work.

Lack of Communication

In most relationships, daily communication is important. So, if the daily communication has decreased to every other day or once a week, it may be time to figure out if this relationship is really working for you. 

Healthy relationships usually consist of a lot of communication. According to Elena Murzello, dating and relationship expert and author of “The Love List: A guide to getting who you want,” if your “communicate no matter what” philosophy has vanished, your relationship may be in trouble.

If the relationship began long distance, it might be easier to communicate from afar because that dynamic is the only one that’s existed. If both parties are used to being in one another’s presence, it might become increasingly disheartening to communicate in less personal ways as time goes on.

Lack of Trust

Relationships ends because of trust issues (whether real or perceived), and long-distance relationships are a minefield of them. There’s really no way of knowing whether or not an S.O. on the other side of the country is cheating on you.

But remember that close proximity offers no guarantees, either. A healthy, monogamous relationship requires of its participants a moral compass, ethical grounding, commitment and devotion. A trusting relationship has a lot to do with your personalities, your dating histories, your behavioral patterns and whether you’re naturally a jealous person.

Different Expectations

If a couple doesn’t share the same expectations before the separation occurs, it can spell doom for a long-distance relationship. For one half of the couple, it may be viewed as a test of the relationship’s strength, with an eye toward reuniting as soon as possible.

The other, however, may view the separation as a fresh taste of life all on one’s own. A boyfriend or girlfriend who wants to talk 10 times a day isn’t going to appreciate a partner who thinks it’s ideal to check in every few days. Even over a scratchy phone connection, it won’t take long for someone to realize that his or her S.O. doesn’t share the same feelings about the separation.

Not only do expectations matter when it comes to navigating the pitfalls of long-distance relationships, they also matter when it comes to determining where the whole thing is even going. Is the separation somehow moving the relationship ahead a step, or does the distance mean it’s moving in a less hopeful direction?

You Aren’t Willing to Sacrifice For Each Other

In the twenty-first century, many couples include two career-minded, driven individuals. If your goals are pulling you in different directions, eventually one person is going to have to sacrifice for the other, or the relationship will end.

Long distance relationships involve a lot of little sacrifices of your time and money over time. Before you commit thousands of dollars and all of your frequent flyer miles to a relationship, it might be a good idea to make sure that you’re both seeing the same end game.

Feeling insecure

We all feel insecure in ourselves and our relationship sometimes. We all have moments when we feel threatened or inadequate, when fears and worries run away on us, and we get anxious.  We all sometimes hit low points, or have bad days, and look to people we love to provide encouragement and reassurance. That is normal, and part of the give and take of loving, trusting, growing relationships.

However, chronic insecurity is a much bigger problem that will take a big toll on you and your relationship over time. Feeling chronically insecure means you can’t relax and engage with your partner in an intimate, authentic way. And the actions that often arise from insecurity–constantly asking for reassurance, often feeling jealous, making accusations or demands, checking up on people–erode trust and make you look needy and less attractive.

Successful long-distance relationships appear to have four factors in common:

1. Prioritization
When you consciously prioritize your long-distance partner above nearly all of your local social commitments, you will be less likely to resent the effort required to make the relationship work.

2. Commitment
Commit to spending more than just weekends together. The more time you spend the greater, the chance to deepen the bonds between you and the more opportunity you have to really get to know each other.

3. Sharing
If you are in a long-distance relationship, make sure that you don’t just spend the time you have together alone. Share your social/family worlds with each other. We are all part of communities. When we cut our partners off from our communities they don’t really get to know who we are.

4. Planning
If you are serious about the relationship begin planning for a time (in the not to distant future) when the relationship will no longer be long-distance but when the two of you will be together in the same place. This will allow the relationship to have some forward movement so that it doesn’t exist in a suspended state for too long.

If you are currently in a long-distance relationship or are considering getting into one, then apply these elements to your relationship. If you do, you and your love just might end up like Jamie and Aurelia — happily ever after (sigh).

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