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Long Distance Relationship -- Need Help

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Hi, I hope someone has the time to read this. My story is a bit long.


My name's Cyrus, I'm 17 years old and I live in Southern AZ, about two years ago I met a girl on the Internet named Alex (she's my age) and she lives in Chicago IL. We became very good friends as we talked on the 'net, we discovered we got along very well and had a nice relationship. We'd always find time to talk to each other almost every night.

Our feelings gradually grew... After a few months we were close friends...And then quite surprisingly she began calling me her boyfriend... One of the interesting things about meeting people on the Internet is that people are often attracted to each other based on personality and how good a person is instead of pretentious things like what kind of car you drive etc etc.

Of course, a big problem is that she lives a thousand miles away Though we were always so happy talking to each other it's like we never even thought about the distance. She's always the type of person who picks her friends (or boyfriends) wisely, only trusting to stay with someone she knew she'd be happy with.

After we knew each other about six months, we found out her friend Shane had relatives in Arizona and was going to visit them soon! So in August '02 she took a two-week vacation in Phoenix where we could finally meet each other... It went very well, we had some of the best times of our lives infact.

After she returned to Chicago I think is when the pains of a long distance relationship at a young age began to dawn on us.

Talking to her on the 'Net and the phone had lost some of its meaning after we discovered what we were missing out on by being apart. The conundrum was we're too young to be together, and our families would often get on our cases for even carrying on a long distance romance, because being young attractive teenagers we should be out dating a million different people instead of staying faithful to someone you can't even touch.

The fact we stayed together through all this shows how much we really love each other.

We continued talking to each other even though we both have our own lives... She's 16 and a waitress at her dads restaurant... And i'm a stay-at-home student (homeschool) a year passes, we're still talking to each other happily. She turns 17 and my parents finally agree to take me up to Chicago.

We stay there for a whole week, our families meet and surprisingly get along (we're scots and they're greeks) , and it was a wonderful trip. We were so happy to be together again in-person, but everyday that passed was like a clock ticking down to a grim deadline. We didn't want to be apart again after such a long absense, but we had no choice... She would tearily and half-sincerely ask me if I could move in with her, which we both knew is impossible.

So, I return to Az, and we go back to our mundane lives. And it seems, not unlike when we met in Phoenix, the conundrum had returned. As much as we love each other and as strong as our bonds are, we can't shake the thought: Is the pain of our distance worth it? I know she's a young woman and she's interested in other guys. A guy recently moved in nextdoor who goes to her English class and he seems to like her, and she goes to his house a lot now. And her family tells her such sensitive things like "Dump that kid who lives far away, and go for that dude nextdoor!" etc..


You see, I don't want to cause her pain, and I want her to have her freedom, I told her in the past that she could see other guys and i'd understand (because of the distance and all). She told me she'd never do that, but tonight I brought it up again and she said she thought about it a lot which kind of surprised me, now since this other guy has moved in nextdoor she doesn't seem to object to the idea of basically finding a new boyfriend. As much as I want to be there for her, not being around physically seems to be turning into a factor, the distance between us already made her very depressed in the past and I don't want that to happen again. But I love her so much, and if she starts seeing other guys and we break apart that could possibly make the pain so much worse.


So here's my situation:


If me and Alex stay together, we'll have to wait another year or longer before she goes to College and moves away from home (only then can we have freedom to be together and visit as much as we like.) until then we can probably visit each other 3-4 more times (since my family is finally comfortable with us to take trips to see each other.) However, just how much more time can we endure away from each other? I can sense she's eager to have a boyfriend who lives close to her, and her family always pressures her to just dump me. (She has a strong will, but still.)


On the flipside, if we decide to start officially dating different people, it might satisfy our selfish desires but it will make our long lasting communication suddenly grow very awkward and tense and easily tinged with jealousy, we'll probably stop talking to each other and this will lead us on a road to severe heartbreak, maybe including never seeing each other again.


In an ideal situation, we could always remain close friends, and she could see other people until we have the freedom to visit each other all the time at which point we could once again become boyfriend/girlfriend, but this sounds like a fantasy to me. If she started dating other people, she'll probably be hooked into another relationship and we'll be forced to just be friends and likely visits will be haulted because whomever her new boyfriend is probably wouldn't appreciate her ex travelling accross country to see her.

And that would be especially difficult if she's fallen in love with him.


Before I wrap this up, I know we're still very young, I know there's "plenty of fish in the sea" and i'm too young to be in such a serious relationship. This all might be true, but it doesn't change the situation at all. I just need to know how to resolve this without serious heartbreak. One of the hardest things is feeling like you have to break up with someone who you truly love.


Thanks for reading all this.


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I think you've hit on a lot of the keys points. As you summize, were you to start dating others, you'd likely find that the relationship the two of you have now is altered by that. On the other hand though, if you do wind up dating and having meaningful relationships with others, then you'll be fine and not miss each other. Difficulty in that is that one of you will undoubtedly find happiness with somebody else before the other does.


Long distance relationships are very painful and lonely at times. Others often don't understand the feelings as they can more or less pick and choose what time they spend together. The worst is when you have a agruement, you can't kiss and make up when you're 1000 miles apart, and there are times when you really need to.


If you can come up with a plan to eventually be together, and figure out how to plan a few visits together you'll find it easier. It's especially easier if you know when your next visit will be when parting your current visit, in other words, try to plan at least one meeting ahead. That will at least give to a date when you know you'll be together.


If you both think you can make it work, then don't give up on it. You'll likely kick yourself later on when you realize you had something special and didn't follow it. Of course, if you both think you'll each find somebody else were you to split now, then you might want to take that into consideration, but you don't sound convinced of that.


It's tough. I wish you luck and happiness. It'll take a lot of work to keep things together at times.

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You seem like an extremely intelligent and mature young man. I think you've laid it all on the line pretty eloquently.


I wish I could tell you how to resolve everything without heartbreak. Unfortunately I just don't see a way. Its possible that both of you may find someone new at nearly the same time and that you will both naturally just drift apart. The problem comes when one person finds someone and the other doesn't. The one left out is the one who gets really hurt.


You are both really young and you may really be missing out on a lot by forcing yourselves not to date anyone else. Like you've said, once you've had a taste of what it is like to be with someone instead of 1000 miles away there just is no substitute. If you both were older and could make the decision to go and be with each other it would be a different story. Right now though, you are just in an impossible situation.


I would advise you to see other people. I know things may turn out badly in your long distance relationship but its probably best for both of you. And who knows, years down the line if neither of you have found anyone that is right maybe you could try the relationship again. The timing is just wrong right now and its nobody's fault.


Good luck to you.

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Well, sit down with her, and make a plan. Sit down and ask yourselves what you want out of this relationship. If you both decide that in the future you do want to be together and try to pursue this on a new level, then so be it. If that's the case, make a plan to make that happen. ie: Look at some of the same colleges, whatever, and you may end up together that way.


However if you don't have a plan, or if your plans are different, it is always best to go your separate ways. All you can do at this point is find out what each of you want out of a relationship and form a plan around that which you will both be able to committ to.

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