In recent years, long-distance relationships have become more and more common. And if previously many looked at them as unpromising, today the picture is changing in many ways. This is thanks to the ability to conveniently keep in touch via the internet and communicate in a large number of ways.
We decided to attempt to figure out whether such “remote” relationships have serious prospects, how they’re formed and maintained, and what the main difficulties are for a couple in love who cannot be together offline. We promise there will be a lot of interesting ideas!
Recently, the US Center for the Study of Long Distance Relationships conducted a large-scale research project to determine how common such relationships are and what their prospects are. The results were very revealing:
14 million couples in the US alone are in long distance relationships right now
About 3.75 million married couples maintain such relationships
More than 75% of engaged couples were in a long-distance relationship at some point
10% of all marriages in the US began with remote relationships
25% to 50% of students are in a long distance relationship.
The problem with studying this question is that they began to seriously study distance relationships quite recently — about 15-20 years ago. And the situation is changing so rapidly that the data becomes outdated very quickly. For example, in 2010, research was conducted in Germany, during which experts found that the average duration of long-distance relationships was 2.9 years, while the duration of the traditional relationship was 7.3 years. Of course, now the statistics have changed, and the gap has narrowed significantly. Therefore, if you are looking at studies that are 3-5 years old or more, most likely the data is hopelessly outdated.
The duration and prospects of remote relationships are influenced by many factors. But one of the main things is how exactly this relationship began. Here we can distinguish two main categories:
Category I. Relationships that started offline
The couple meets offline, but then, due to circumstances, they are forced to be in a long-distance relationship. Either that or the initial acquaintance takes place online, the relationship quickly goes offline, and then back online later.
Category II. Relationships that started online
The couple meets and maintains a relationship exclusively on the web. The lovers may never meet in person, but be in a relationship for years, and feel affection and responsibility for a partner. This has become quite common in the last few years. The reason is ample opportunities for dating at a distance.
Option 1. Dating sites and apps
Real classics in Internet dating with their own advantages and disadvantages. To date, there are more than eight thousand online dating services: Match, Tinder, Bumble, Badoo, Hinge and many others. The peak of popularity of such platforms came in the early 2010s. Now they have lost a bit of popularity amid the growth of alternative services.
Option 2. Online video chats like Omegle
Omegle is a simple random video chat that connects random users via video. You can only set certain parameters: the language of communication or a list of interests. The rest is a twist of fate! This is a convenient format for "quick" dating. But if you need more customization and search filters, consider Omegle alternatives:
OmegleAlternative.com — a Omegle alternative chat with an exclusive gender filter, thanks to which the system connects men exclusively with girls. And for convenient international communication, a built-in translator is provided.
OmeTV — a simple alternative to Omegle with a gender filter and a similar translator. The selection of a chat partner by gender does not work as well as in OmegleAlternative.com, but it still works.
Camsurf — another similar service to Omegle with gender and language filters, search by interests and the ability to hide your location. Most features are available with a premium subscription.
Tinychat — not exactly a classic video chat, but rather a streaming service with many themed broadcasts by other users.
Video chats are a good choice if you don't have the time or desire to fiddle with dating sites and apps.
Option 3. Social networks and other online platforms
Users still continue to get acquainted on social networks, instant messengers, on themed forums, city chats, and so on. This is not very convenient for many reasons, but there is still a chance to meet your love here. Therefore, it is definitely not worth abandoning the idea of finding a soulmate somewhere on Facebook or Twitter.
We can name three main reasons why it becomes increasingly difficult to maintain relationships online over time:
First reason: lack of attention from a loved one
You must agree, you want to see your lover more often, spend time together, go on romantic dates, watch your favorite TV series in the evening, make joint purchases and just chat. Relationships at a distance are always personified by a lack of attention to some extent. Of course, online communication and various communication formats help to cope with this, but not 100%.
Second reason: sexual dissatisfaction
No matter how much we talk about higher feelings and emotional attachment, the issue of intimacy still remains relevant. And sexual dissatisfaction can really cause a break in relationships. The logic is quite understandable: a person does not want to cheat on their partner and understands that in order to satisfy their own physical needs, the most rational option is to end the relationship and start a new one.
Third reason: external circumstances
Imagine your friends going to the movies with their lovers, spending holidays together, dining in cozy cafes in the evenings and going camping for the weekend. You don't have that opportunity. And if at first you do not attach much importance to this, then over time it begins to bite more and more. This is one of the reasons that almost half of long-distance relationships end in breaking up. But still more than half of them are quite successful, and they please those involved!
Obviously, long-distance relationships are almost always a necessary measure, and not the whim of a couple. In the modern world, people are far from being anchored to certain places as they used to be. Moving for study, work or voluntarily is an extremely common phenomenon. And this will only gain momentum in the future.
Our task in such conditions is to learn to perceive relationships at a distance as something absolutely normal and adapt to their characteristics with all the advantages and disadvantages. If a couple really sees the prospects within such a relationship, distance will not become an obstacle for them at all. The main thing is to clearly understand that the moment of complete transition to offline will definitely come soon enough. But here and now, the distance should only strengthen your connection, increase trust and enrich feelings for your loved one.