Long Distance Relationships- Characteristics And Maintenance
A long-distance relationship (LDR) or long-distance romantic relationship (LDRR) is an intimate relationship between partners who are geographically separated from one another. Partners in LDRs face geographic separation and lack of face-to-face contact. LDRs are particularly prevalent among college students, constituting 25% to 50% of all relationships. Even though scholars have reported a significant number of LDRs in undergraduate populations, long-distance relationships continue to be an understudied phenomenon.
LDRs are qualitatively different from geographically close relationships; that is, relationships in which the partners are able to see each other, face-to-face, most days. According to Rohlfing (1995) he suggests the following unique challenges for those in long-distance relationships:
- Increased financial burdens to maintain relationships
- Difficulty maintaining geographically close friendships while in long-distance romantic relationships
- Difficulty judging the state of a relationship from a distance
- High expectations by partners for the quality of limited face-to-face meetings in the relationship. MAINTENANCE. New communication technologies such as cellular phone plans make communication among individuals at a distance easier than in the past. Before the popularity of internet dating, long-distance relationships were not as common, as the primary forms of communication between the romance lovers usually involved either telephone conversations or corresponding via mail. According to Pew Internet, American citizens were asked how often they used the Internet on a typical day, they reported 56% sending or reading email, 10% reported sending instant messages, and 9% reported using an online social network such as Facebook or Twitter. However, with the advent of the Internet, long-distance relationships have exploded in popularity as they become less challenging to sustain with the use of modern technology. Ultimately, communicating and setting realistic goals can help prevent disconnection and the loss of touch.
The increase in long-distance relationships is matched by an increasing number of technologies designed specifically to support intimate couples living apart. In particular there have been a host of devices which have attempted to mimic co-located behaviours at a distance including hand-holding, leaving love notes, hugging and even kissing. The success of these technologies has, so far, been limited.
Couples who have routine, strategic relational maintenance behaviors, and take advantage of social media can help maintain a long-distance relationship. Having positivity (making interactions cheerful and pleasant), openness (directly discussing the relationship and one’s feelings), assurances (reassuring the partner about the relationship and the future), network (relying on support and love of others), shared tasks (performing common tasks) and conflict management (giving the partner advice) are some of the routine and strategic relation maintenance behaviors. Source:wikipedia.com