Long Distance Relationships: Also Known As, "Wait, you haven't met in person yet?"
I’ve been in a long distance relationship for over two and a half years and I still get the same reactions from people, despite my boyfriend and I having spent months together in person over the course of our 7 visits to each other so far: “Have you met him yet? You can’t know someone till you meet them!” “Wait you met online? Do you know what he looks like?” “He lives in ENGLAND? Is this actually serious then?”
Despite everyone being supportive, this is still ultimately what I hear at most of my Big Fat Greek family get togethers.
I’ve seen “Catfish”, you’ve seen “Catfish”, and clearly not every online relationship turns out like the plot in “You’ve Got Mail.” That being said, I wish the older generations had more faith in us younger kids. We ARE the generation who deals with the online community and thus we are smarter about who we talk to. Of COURSE I saw my boyfriend on Skype before I accepted his asking me to be his girlfriend. I know some people don’t video chat (and please, if you are one of those people: VIDEO CHAT NOW, you have to always be safe), but the majority of us do because we know that there are creeps out there. So yes I know what he looks like, yes we met online but YES that DOES mean I “know” him.
Okay. Okay. OKAY. I understand that there is something different about meeting a person face to face, touching them, spending late nights in bed together doing nothing but talking until the sun comes up, ending the night, or morning, with a beautiful kiss. I get it.
But it is an absolute waste of your breath to tell me I did not know my boyfriend before I physically met him. Spending over 6 hours on video chat EVERY SINGLE DAY is the exact reason I DID know him so well before we “met.” For 6 hours every day we sat at our computers just so we could see and talk to one another. We spoke about his family, my family, our childhoods, what his dream career is, what I think mine is. We cooked food together, we played Pictionary, I spoke to his mom multiple times and sat on video chat talking with his best friend and brother while he went to cook food. We stayed up late on the phone talking about what we wanted our futures to be like, including what our future would look like. I sent him a package for Christmas and he cried on Skype because I knew exactly what to get him, which he still says no one else ever does, because I knew him so well. When he would get frustrated over his video editing I knew exactly how to calm him down. When I was crying because my birthday ended up sucking, he knew how to stop the tears. ALL we had the opportunity to do together was talk. Being in two different countries meant we only got to talk. As a result, we developed such a deep understanding of one another. When all you have is video chat, and yet this person still wants to spend time with you rather than someone they can actually hold, you know you’ve found something real. Being together meant we finally met a person who understood us. Who made us feel happy, and special. Who really made us laugh, and I mean really laugh. Someone who wanted to be there for the other even if it meant staying up till 3am because of a stupid time difference. Being 3,000 + miles apart didn’t mean we were going to stop feeling what was inevitable.
This was all before we “met.”
It wasn’t until 8 months into our relationship and a year into being in each others lives that we were able to stand right in front of each other. But don’t you dare for a second believe it took us meeting in that airport to “know” who the other was.
If you’re in a long distance relationship like I am then I’m sure you understand what I mean. And for those of you reading this who may not understand why people date online, wait 3 years to meet, and spend hours upon hours on their computer to speak to their love, I hope this helps you a little more in stopping your judgements.
Love is love and it’s “real” no matter if you’re able to hold hands or not.
-Soph (of the tumblr blog “ldr-some”)