Kiss me through the phone

Piper St. Regis

I had never been in a relationship before college. I had also never been in a long-distance relationship, but both of these things changed in my first semester of college. I was met with the typical challenges of dating someone 2,000 miles away: time differences, missing the other person, and poor Wifi connection. But what I did not expect was managing the balance between my life on the phone, and my life at college. 

   

I didn’t want to be that girl who spent all her time with her boyfriend, and I sure as hell didn’t want to let my freshman year go to waste. Covid not only complicated this, but set me up for a long-distance companionship;  I was spending more time alone and almost inevitably, more time on the phone. And when I was with my friends, I tried not to talk about him at all, fearing that they would grow annoyed with this invisible person. I lived in this split persona for a while, leaving dinners and hangouts early to pick up a Facetime call and walking on relationship-talk eggshells around people. It almost felt like I was living two lives. However they were two lives that I didn't want to let go.   

    

But like we learned in Hannah Montana, it's not that easy to live two lives. I was constantly anxious about being a bad friend, having a fulfilling semester, and maintaining my relationship. It started to affect my mental health, and I found myself becoming even more closed off. I would skip out on my friends all together and spend most of my days alone in my room. What did I gain from this? Other than an insane amount of extra food points from missing out on meals, nothing. 

     

But as time went on, I came to the realization that there is no need to compartmentalize every aspect of life. I know now that distance itself is not the problem. It’s the partner you’re with and the people you surround yourself with that make it possible. Good friends will want to hear about your relationships, no matter how far away they are. Missing your partner is inevitable and having a support system of people you can talk to will help. More importantly, good boyfriends will understand when you want to go out, even if that means you can’t talk to them. It’s not always going to be perfect, but if they’re the right person, they’ll want you to experience life fully. It’s all about finding balance, and understanding that sometimes that balance isn’t going to be 50-50. 

  

 Long distance is never going to be easy. You’re always going to feel like you’re getting pulled in two directions. But I’ve learned that it shouldn’t have to pull you completely apart.