I’ve known Joy since I was 14 and she’s the person I’ve traveled with the most. Mainly because her boyfriend, Shanky, lives in Singapore and we both fly there almost every year. I’ve seen her happily spending time with him and I’ve seen her cry in airports for leaving him.
I’m no relationship expert and don’t even get me talking about being in one but, there’s something about Long Distance Relationships (LDRs) that seems so gratifying even if most of the time, it is quite misunderstood.
So here’s a little experiment. I’ve sent both Shanky and Joy the same set of questions about their LDR. Let’s see if she looks at things the same way he does.
Me: Hey guys! Where are you now?
He Says (Shanky): I am from Singapore! the little red dot.
She Says (Joy): The hottest place to be right now – Manila
Me: Living far away from each other, how’d you end up meeting?
He: As in how we started? Through Tumblr. Joy was playing hard to get. She showed no interest and doesn’t want to continue the conversation. I thought, this girl aint worth my time, but after some time, I just talked to her again and since then, we never stopped talking. From Tumblr messages, to MSN then to Skype. But I have to give it to her, she has more balls than me. She confessed first than I.
She: How we ended up meeting – this thirsty fool sent me a message on Tumblr in response to a picture of me supporting our national rugby team. Here’s the message:
Me: Obviously, technology plays a big part in Long Distance Relationships (LDRs) like yours. What are three (3) apps that helps that both of you keep in touch?
She: The three apps that we use the most to keep in touch are Skype, Line, and Facebook.
Me: Any downsides with using these apps? How about downsides with technology in general?
He: Oh shoot, looks like I already answered one of the downsides of technology. We didn’t use Couple for long cause we were bored with it. Even though these technologies help bring us closer but it is still not the same as being with each other physically. Makes you realize the value of a simple touch like holding hands.
She: Although there are so many useful and sophisticated apps that exist today, nothing can really come close to being with a person face to face; not even virtual reality which is what people are excited about right now. We make do what we are given, so I can’t complain much (except for the internet connection here in the Philippines). It’s a temporary fix anyway since we won’t be in a long distance relationship forever (hopefully?).
Me: What makes LDRs difficult?
He: The D in LDR is difficult. Whether if you are both in the same or different time zone, we all go through the same shit. Distance away from each other. Many people think that LDR is not as real as any relationship. On the contrary, we spend all the time talking and getting to know each other. Of course, like any relationship, we all need support. My parents, unfortunately, don’t really support us. So, to me, its the distance and the support.
She: Having only a few days in a year to spend together and having to say good bye again and again. It’s the bittersweet side of meeting. Also, the lack of physical connection (hugs, holding hands, cuddling, dot dot dot – kidding! Not really) is difficult for me because it’s how I show my affection. In short, I can’t make lambing and pa-cute whenever I’m in trouble.
Me: What makes LDRs worth it?
He: Is it worth it? Hell freaking yeah! It is tough. We have been together for 4 years and met 5 times. But we want to be together for the long run. We are serious and we mean it. This is not for the weak heart and we will keep fighting and working hard for us. Besides, she hates cockroaches. Means I will be having lots of fun when we close the distance. Lots of it. hehehe 🙂
She: I’m going to go ahead and be cheesy here: The effort and time we invest in our relationship, the steps we’re taking to be together, and the things we’re willing to sacrifice are for that one way ticket to each other. We’ve always had this goal in mind since the very beginning and that’s what makes it all worth it. If we don’t end up together, I’m going to write songs about it and have Adele sing them.
You can read more about Joy, her adventures in fitness, BJJ and her passion for education children with special needs at here.