#COVIDQuarantineConfession: We didn’t expect (not-so-) long-distance relationships to be this hard.
We lucky couples who aren’t separated by oceans and endless roads didn’t know just how good we had it — until the recent Luzon-wide lockdown, that is. The LDR veterans may roll their eyes and laugh at us, but that doesn’t make the separation anxiety any less real!
Much of our free time is usually spent together; heck, some of us even live together most days of the week. (Because, if I may quote Nadine Lustre: Come on guys, it’s 2020!) When you get to spend time with each other almost every single day, an entire month of separation feels almost like an eternity — OA and eye roll-worthy as it may seem.
In the midst of my friends’ sighs, tears, and countless grumbles about their quarantine-induced LDRs, I asked them for tips on how to keep the flame alive during these trying times. I asked some couples in actual LDRs for their tips, too! So, without further ado — here are a few ways couples can cope “during a time of corona”:
For LDR couples who like to keep it old-school
1. Write each other love letters
I wasn’t kidding when I said old-school! Distance (even if it’s just less than 10 kilometres!) makes the heart grow fonder — so why not make things extra romantic by penning sweet, handwritten love letters? One for each day that you spend apart. And yes, I am totally talking about the way Noah (Ryan Gosling) did this for Allie (Rachel McAdams) on The Notebook!
Once your LDR is over, you can trade letters and look back on the days you spent apart (read: missing each other). Does this sound like your kind of thing? Handwritten declarations of love never go out of style, if you ask me!
For couples who love to Netflix and chill
2. Download Netflix Party and make it a movie date — or binge-watch K-dramas together!
Nightly Netflix date, anyone? If you and your significant other are Google Chrome users, you can download the Netflix Party Chrome extension. Basically, it allows you to watch the same movie or TV show together in real time. An added bonus? There’s a chat feature, so you guys can continue making all your side comments as you would IRL!
Of course, you and your special someone do your film/series binge however you like. Say, you can both play your movie or TV show of choice (whether or not it happens to be on Netflix) and just talk on the phone or video chat at the same time!
For couples who are all about growing together, even when apart
3. Take up a new hobby or learn a new skill
Take an online course. Learn how to play a new instrument. Perfect a new recipe — even just a simple one you learned from TikTok! The possibilities are endless. And when all is over and you can finally reunite, you can compare and show off your newfound skills. Oh, diba?
4. Focus on bettering yourselves
Your (physical) time together may be on hold, but work still beckons. Take this short separation to focus on what you have to do; especially the things you’ve been too distracted to take care of. Enjoy some ‘me’ time, indulge in some self-care, read a book, and catch up with your friends — do whatever you can to help make you a better you. It takes two good individuals to make a great couple, after all!
For techie, competitive couples
5. Compete against each other via online video games
Whether it’s NBA 2K or FIFA, your favourite role-playing game, or a simple (but heated!) game of Scrabble, you and your partner can take your healthy competition online. (Thank you, technology!) You just might be surprised at how many consecutive games you’ve played in a row — the next thing you know, you’ll already have one day of separation down!
For LDR couples who love hearing about each other’s days
6. Schedule phone or video calls — whatever you prefer
Who cares if your day was spent lazing around, stuffing your face with snacks, reading a book, or ticking off tasks on your to-do list? Your significant other wants to hear about your day, no matter how boring you think it was!
Assuming you’re usually in contact via text or instant messaging most of the day, perhaps you can make things a little more personal by scheduling a regular phone or video call (whether it’s daily, every few days, or weekly). Some stories are better spoken out loud rather than told in long text messages, don’t you think? Plus, hearing your partner’s voice just might help bridge the gap between you two — even if it’s just for a while!
As much as it sucks, staying home (and apart) is what’s best for you two right now. But don’t worry — your LDR will be over before you know it. Meanwhile, we hope these tips will help you stay connected!