They’re the ones you call crying after a breakup, and the ones you text fifty times a day.
They’re your right-hand women/men, your #1 fans and your lifesavers. Your life wouldn’t be the same without them, because they’re your BFFs.
Sometimes school or work can often leave you hundreds of miles, states and even sometimes oceans away from your best friends.
So what’s a girl/man to do when best friendships suddenly become long distance relationships?
Read on for some ways to maintain long distance friendships!
1. Never stop texting. Keep your old texting habits intact. I think you should still text them about the mundane crap in your life and theirs, just like you would when you lived in the same place. WhatsApp for free text messaging is a lifesaver! You can send messages, photos, voice notes and videos, all free and fast.
2. Visit them as much as possible. Dedicate most of your travel budgets to visiting each other. I suggest you always keep an eye out for the lowest fares.
3. Skype, duh. Skype video makes you feel much closer than regular phone calls. I recommend planning specific Skype dates, like seeing the same movie and getting on Skype to talk about it after, or cooking the same meal together and eating it at the same time. I love this idea, and its exciting.
4. Make a schedule. If there’s a huge time difference (like NYC to Nigeria), don’t hesitate to schedule weekend phone calls ahead of time.
5. Keep emails simple and frequent. A lot of people think keeping in touch means writing long emails back and forth all the time. My friends and I just constantly write shorter emails back and forth during the day, which makes us feel more a part of each other’s lives. I’ve had other long distance friendships fizzle because I always felt like I needed to write long, all-encompassing emails, and I never had time, so I’m definitely going to keep this in mind!
6. Get a blackberry and have your friend on your blackberry messenger. Its the easiest and fastest way to communicate with anyone no matter where they are in the world.
7. Offer your couch. Always let them know they’re welcome to stay at your place if they want to come visit. Some people feel weird about asking to stay over at their friend’s place. The truth is, if you both are really close, this shouldn’t pose a problem.
8. Remembering important stuffs like birthdays, anniversaries, engagements, family news.
9. Be honest. Try to let the other know what’s up if you’ll be out of touch for awhile. If you’re going through a rough patch and need to request some extra phone time, let them know that too. Just keep those lines of communication open as much as possible. It will make you feel closer and prevent any resentment from building.
10. Accept that change is inevitable. Don’t expect the friendship to be the same once you don’t live in the same place, but know that it will still be there. True that.!
Alright, GISTvillers, I would love to know about your long distance friendships! How do you keep the friendship fires burning? Have you ever had a friendship fizzle out because of distance? What would you do differently in the future to make it last?
Give me the scoop in the comments, or feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org