One of the reasons that young people prefer to hook up casually is that they are hesitant to get emotionally invested in a relationship with an expiration date on it. The school year ends, people study abroad, job offers come from different cities, as do acceptances to graduate school. Most people can expect to be fairly mobile until their mid-20s. Not surprisingly, that’s when dating is most likely to occur, as the idea of finding “the one” begins to take hold.
(Photo by joelogon via Flickr Creative Commons)
In the meantime, though, what if you fall for someone? It might not be practical, but sometimes romance does happen in spite of everyone’s best efforts not to catch feelings. Or maybe you desire a level of emotional intimacy that casual hooking up just doesn’t offer. That’s a good thing. You need practice at relationships. The person you are into this summer may not have babies with you, but there’s still a lot you can learn and enjoy from each other. You’re both into it, you go for it, D-day arrives. What next?
Sometimes couples decide to try and keep it going, knowing the pitfalls. Relationships are hard work, and long-distance relationships take a special kind of effort. If you get lazy and stop working on them, they die. Occasionally, they just fade away and no one gets crushed. More often, though, they die a hideous death as one or both partners mourn the end of something that could have been great if only they lived nearer one another.
How can you succeed in a long-distance relationship? It helps a lot if the separation is finite – you know you will (or could) live in the same place at some future date. If you do decide to try and make it work, there are key strategies that are fairly obvious:
- open and frequent communication
- sharing information about your separate lives
- visiting whenever possible
The secret to a great long-distance relationship is great sex. That means tech sex.
I once heard a guy complain that he didn’t think it would work because he had “needs.” Who doesn’t? What do you think your right hand is for? Hand + phone = good sex, at least theoretically. When I was growing up, all we had were phones (not even cordless) with heavy handsets. Nowadays you younguns have all kinds of incredible technology available to you, and you can have a pretty decent sex life with someone even if you live halfway around the world. A relationship can’t thrive forever on long-distance sex, but it can go a long way in between real visits. The hardest part sometimes is beginning. It can feel a little intimidating getting started, but it is very rewarding, so stick with it. Sometimes long-distance sex is even more awesome because you take risks and let yourself go in a way that you might not when you are together face-to-face.
- Good way to dip your toe in the pool, but lacks the immediacy of verbal/audio communication.
- Debby Herbenick, blogger at MySexProfessor.com has a great article on how to have great phone sex. She also has a recent post on how the new iphone 3GS will revolutionize phone sex.
- Send photos. You can send a progression of pics in real time as you get aroused, and of course they can be viewed again later when you’re not in touch.
- Dirty texting. Always fun, especially at times when it’s not safe! This is a great way to build anticipation for later.
- Vibrator. There’s a new iphone app from pleasure.com that turns the iphone into a vibrator. The vibrations are not very strong, but the developers’ intent is that you’ll use it slyly while on the subway, in line at Starbucks, etc. (Seriously, this might require an ample supply of Purell, ew.)
- This is the biggie, as far as I’m concerned. Talk dirty face to face. Use the webcam and your imagination to turn your partner (and yourself) on.
Synching Up Porn
- You can find porn that is relationship-oriented, appealing to both men and women. Watch it on your laptops at the same time while on your cell phones.
Internet Sex Toys
- Sounds like the technology has a way to go here, but there are devices that communicate through software online.
- The most popular combination is the Interactive Fleshlight for him and the Sinulator (rabbit vibrator) for her. When he manipulates the Fleshlight, she feels it in her vibrator. It currently requires interacting with a goofy dashboard on your computer, but the whole field of teledildonics (ridiculous word, I know) is growing rapidly.
Obviously, none of these approaches are limited to long-distance couples. If it intrigues you, try it out.
I would be remiss if I didn’t offer a word of warning here. Remember, Google is forever. It’s very common for women to be filmed with their consent for private use, and then for the film to be uploaded to the internet without their knowledge. Even someone you know extremely well may be capable of betraying your privacy at some future date. Personally, I would recommend keeping your face out of any really sexy videos or photos. Even if it’s anonymous online, all it takes it for one person to recognize you and tag it. Search engines will then find it whenever your name is Googled. Just ask Leighton Meester, whose tape of her giving her ex a “foot job” has been leaked and sold for online display. And check out this New York Times story about someone discovering a clueless friend on an amateur porn site.