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Long-Distance Relationships vs. Quarantine

jeikabu profile image jeikabu Originally published at on ・2 min read

Opting for the often exciting life-style choice of working overseas isn’t without its drawbacks.

I never wanted a long-distance relationship. Neither did my partner. They’re preternaturally difficult and I have a poor track record. But, despite being 1500 km apart, monthly business trips, comparable timezones, and discount airlines made it barely tolerable. Along came COVID-19.

March was out of the question. My flight in April was cancelled, and a few weeks ago my May flight got cancelled. Depending on where you are, some limitations are finally lifting. Limited international flights will resume in June and expand through July and beyond.

But, none of this means our relationship was quarantined. I’ve been contemplating this post for some time, but a recent BBC morsel made me pull the trigger. This is for all you star-crossed lovers out there.

Some ideas based on how we’ve been passing the time:

  • Use Skype, WhatsApp (or any other service) to video call each other
    • While doing "mundane" activities like cooking, chores, going to bed, etc. it almost feels like you're doing it together
  • Sending pictures and text/voice messages more than normal
  • Use Uber Eats (or similar regional option) to order food for each other and have dinner together (candle optional)
  • Watch the same movie or TV show
    • YouTube, share a Netflix account, or one of the countless competitors
    • Investigate support software (e.g. “youtube party”, “netflix party”) allowing you to synchronise video streams, etc.
    • Take the opportunity to share each other’s favorites, classics from childhood, etc.
    • Bonus points for video chatting at the same time. I like to place the camera adjacent to my seat so I turn to look at them like they were sitting next to me
  • Online video games (or board/card games- where possible), sending each other daily "challenges", etc.

Hopefully this quarantine will turn out to be a once-in-a-lifetime experience. But, it’s reminded me that many other couples go through a similar situation if work/school takes them elsewhere.

Anyone else come up with other good ways to stay connected with your significant other?

Discussion (2)

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Ben Lovy

Lovely post, thanks. I wholeheartedly agree with every point here. My only other suggestion is in the same vein, we would keep a joint playlist and listen to the same background music, reading the same leisure books, things like that. It's not easy, but in some ways it can help you grow closer as a couple too. It's not an ideal situation, but I'm grateful for many long-distance memories we've shared as well as the in-person ones.

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jeikabu Author

Oh, that's a good one! I'm embarrassed to admit I've yet to embrace the cloud music revolution; big 'ole folder of MP3s here. We seem to only like about half of each other's music, so this would be a good exercise.