How it started
It was 14th April 2006 when my current long distance relationship started. I was currently in my first year of University studying Computing. As well as having an interest in nail art and crafty things like jewellery making, I also have a bit of a tomboy side and enjoy video gaming. Back in 2006 I used to frequent an online gaming site and post a lot on the forums there. It was on this website that I found my fiancé. Believe it or not but how I found him was actually as the result of a practical joke.
There was another member of the same online community who was quite popular at the time. I had received a message from her stating that she had a friend who was also a member of the same website and who wanted to ask me a question. I remember reading this message and thinking to myself why don’t he just message me then? Regardless I decided to reply as my curiosity wanted to know what this was about and who this person was. Below is the message I received:
“hi there !
how are you ? i have this friend who’s been nagging for ages for me to tell him about you .. i think he has soemthing for you ..”
After I had replied to this, she messaged me back with the name of the person and so I decided to leave them a message to find out what all this was about. Below is the message I sent him:
gamingqueen tells me that u’ve been asking her 2 tell u about me and that she thinks u have something 4 me?”
And below is his reply:
“hmm lol, maybe she was just tricking me or summat. (a late aprill fool’s joke maybe lol)”
So it turned out she was just trying to embarrass him a bit and it was all a joke. However despite this we got talking and became friends instantly. As we learnt more and more about each other it was obvious that we loved spending time talking to each other and that despite the huge cultural differences between us, we still have a lot of interests and opinions in common. It’s funny because I remember how back then I had no intention of being in another relationship because of how my last relationship had ended 7 months previous to this. However no one had ever made me feel so good inside before and so it was not long before we realised this needed to be more than an online friendship. We knew that we loved each other.
Development of the relationship
Since this day we have communicated electronically in one form or another almost every single day. The only times we have not communicated has only been when we have had no choice due to things like failed internet or power cuts. However now that he has a mobile phone and one with internet it has been easier to at least get one message to each other per day.
In the time we have been together I have grown closer to him emotionally than I thought would ever be possible to do with another human being. I am normally a quiet person who finds it hard to not keep all of my negative thoughts and feelings to myself bottled up inside whenever I am feeling down. But with Binu I find it a lot easier to share how I feel and feel safe telling him all of my secrets. I know he feels the same way about me. Not only this but he accepts and at least tries to understand why parts of me are the way they are.
Background information on us
Binu is currently 24 years old and lives in India. I’m 25 years old and live in the UK. When we first got together, due to the months our birthdays fall on, he was only 17, soon to be 18 and I was 19. In India they do not have daylight savings time. So at different parts of the year my time zone is either 5:30 or 4:30 hours behind him. I feel the main cause of our problems during our relationship have been with my troubles dealing with the time difference. I hate when we have to say goodbye for the day. But when it is way past his bedtime for him, it is not that late for me and so it always feels like he has to go so early. This usually ends up in me getting a bit moody and then I feel so guilty for it afterwards. I often wonder how he puts up with me sometimes, but he never seems to think I am as bad as I am certain I am lol.
We also both studied both undergrad and postgrad degrees in computer science related subjects at university during the same years and so have been a great support for each other during our studies as well. Even in our differences we have always been accepting of each other. For example I know that in a lot of relationships a difference in religion can be a problem. He is Hindu and I am an Atheist lol. This has never been a problem in our relationship. I do not mind learning about things other religions do as long as I am not preached to. Similarly Binu understands that I do not need to follow a religion to get through life, especially now that I have him to be there for me. If I ever need guidance I can listen to his own words of wisdom instead.
Why I love him so much
This brings me onto the things that I love the most about him. Now I could type all day about this but I will try not to ramble on for too long…
- He always tries his best to make me feel better.
- He always gives me reasons to not be so self loathing of myself
- He is always there to support me and help me when I need help
- I know I can tell him anything and he knows more about me than anyone else ever will.
- We have 100% commitment and trust to each other.
- He accepts me for who I am and tries his best to understand me.
Activities we do together
So you may be wondering, other than instant messaging and skype, what other things does our relationship consist of. There are a lot of things we can’t do because of the distance but we do as much as we can do with what we have. Some of the things we do together to relax include:
- Playing online games together
- Looking at things online and sharing links with each other to discuss
- Helping each other with work/studies
- Learning things together
- Watching funny videos online or looking at funny pictures
- Getting the same film and then playing it at the same time so we can watch things together.
First meeting in person
Despite the fact that we have been together for over 6 and a half years now. It was not financially feasible for us to meet in person until this year. We decided that Binu would come visit me in the UK first as we felt he would find it easier to adjust here than me there. Plus with my self confidence and social anxiety problems I was not ready to travel alone yet, especially for my first time going abroad. I am currently in the process of applying for my first ever passport though and am actually quite excited at the same time as being scared about the whole travelling alone thing.
We originally planned for the trip around May time 2012. However the visiting visa application process was more difficult than we had anticipated. Due to our lack of knowledge and experience regarding such things the first application was refused due to lack of evidence. This was a very hard and painful time for both of us. But after looking at what action we needed to take and earning enough to apply again we tried again. This time we were successful and Binu booked a flight straight away for 2 weeks in October.
When Binu finally arrived in the UK, our first face to face meeting couldn’t have gone better. I was anxious of course due to family saying things like he could be the complete opposite to how he is online, but this was not the case. I felt completely comfortable with him from the very first second. I actually surprised myself at how easily and quickly I found myself being 100% comfortable with him due to the problems I usually have interacting with people. It was like our entire relationship had been this way since the start. Not only this, but I found myself being a lot more confident and adventurous than I normally would. I guess it’s the feeling of safety and security his presence gave me. For example I normally wouldn’t try to drive somewhere that I didn’t know how to get to without having someone who knew the way teach me with a few practise runs first. But with Binu I was able to do without this. Maybe this was because he did not care at all if we got lost and I knew that if we did get lost I would have him there with me for safety.
The two weeks that he was with me in the UK were the best and most fun two weeks of my life. We visited a lot of places, and I got to show him a lot of things, which I had all organised by myself. Normally I would be too anxious to take the lead with such things. I also had the opportunity to let him experience a lot of new things, and I loved how well we fitted together like a perfect team.
Near the end of his visit, he had asked my dad if it was OK that he proposed to me and we actually got engaged on 19/10/2012. For me the best part about this was that I feel like we are halfway there to being married lol. It’s a shame that the distance means that so much time has to pass before we will finally be able to start our own family.
The only downside to the trip was that two weeks were way to short and the time passed so quickly. I’ll never forget watching him disappear up the escalators in the airport. It was tough when he had to leave and it hurt a lot for the both of us, but it only makes me more determined to be with him forever. I feel that our relationship developed more during his trip and that it is even stronger than before. The only other plus side is that even though he is not with me in person, I feel a lot more confident with myself since he was here. Even people have work have mentioned that I have changed a bit for the better. Thank you Binu for being mine and letting me be yours.
Is an online relationship hard?
Yes it is harder than a ‘normal’ relationship because of the distance. This is especially so on days when you are feeling really down and all you want is all your pain to be squashed out of you by your partner’s arms. But at the same time to feel this way only shows you how much it is worth it.
As for things like arguments, yes we have had a few arguments in the past. However I believe that all healthy relationships have the odd argument or misunderstanding. It is the way it is dealt with or the reasons behind it that make the difference as to how successful a relationship is. If a couple tells you they have never had any kind of conflict, then I would have to question whether this is because they do not have any care between one another.
However I think as time has gone on the amount of arguments has reduced a lot. This is because it takes time to learn about one another and how they work. I have to admit any conflicts now are mostly me having a bad mood anyway. I think he has realised that he has to just let me have my mood/rant and I’ll be fine and apologise later lol. To be fair I would say that 95% of the time this is due to time zone differences anyway. This is because depending on the time of year he is either 4:30 or 5:30 hours in front of me. So when it is still really early for me, it is really late at night for him and so I tend to get upset when he needs to get offline to sleep in time for work etc.
Do I have any regrets?
I do not have any regrets as such. The only thing that gets me down is that I am certain that if we were born in the same country that we would have been married with children a long time ago. I do wonder how old I will be before we are able to start a family, but what I do know is that the wait will be worth the pain. I would rather be lonely for the rest of my life than give up Binu.
I feel there is a lot more I can put into this blog post, but it is quite a long read already and so I think I will wrap it up here. My long distance relationship is the best thing to ever happen to me simply because of the person who it is with. I feel it makes me a better person than who I would have been without having him in my life. This is because I find it so much easier to be more confident in myself and comfortable with myself when he is around. He has always been an inspiration to me.
It’s funny when I look back on my relationships from before. I never thought I would be so grateful to them for dumping me. If not for that I may never have found my perfect match so easily.
In my opinion there is no reason why a long distance relationship can’t work. It is not as different to a ‘normal’ relationship as people may think. This is because in any relationship, it will only work if you are committed to each other and are honest with each other. People may say things like their body has needs to be satisfied and such. But if you truthfully love someone, then they should be the only one for you and you would be willing to wait as long as it took to share such enjoyment with them. Unfaithfulness can not be a part of any kind of true relationship. Therefore the reasons why you hear of failed long distance relationships are only the same reasons why ‘normal’ relationships fail as well.
Now I do admit that a long distance relationship is harder work. However in my opinion, if you are willing to put the extra effort in then this just shows to you how strong the love and bond is and shows you whether it is all really worth it. Coping with the hardships caused by the distance only helps to make the relationship stronger. This is similar for ‘normal’ relationships as well because being there for each other through hard times will make your bond stronger.
I hope that this post is an inspiration and support to anyone reading this who is in a long distance relationship. It can work, but like with all relationships, this is only if you feel it is worth it and you are prepared to stick with it. It may seem impossible at times, but it is so worth it when you finally do get to meet them in person for the first time.
For those who have been in a long distance relationship which hasn’t been successful. Don’t let the experience put you off, try to learn from it instead. People start ‘normal’ relationships all the time and not all of them work out. Some of those don’t even last that long for one reason or another. Just think of how many divorces there are. This is because you can’t know everything about someone from day one. Relationships take time and effort from both sides. If any type of relationship has failed then it was obviously not meant to be and the person for you is still out there somewhere. Think of how many people live on this planet, and that will show you that it makes sense that it will be hard to find the perfect one straight away. Any bad experiences will help you avoid problems in the future.
Finally, thanks to those who commented on my last post regarding this. It was interesting to get an insight into other people’s opinions from both people who are in a long distance relationship and those who are not.