How true is the saying 'Distance makes the heart grow fonder'?

Q: My boyfriend and I have only been together for about two months but we've spent a lot of time together and things have moved quickly. Needless to say it's been a great start! However he will be away for work for half a year. It seems like an extremely long time and I am worried that the 'passion' we have now will fade over time. People say 'Distance makes the heart grow fonder' so I'm hoping this will only make him miss me more but I don't know. He'll be overseas so we can probably plan 1-2 trips to visit but nothing more than that.


My answer: You and your boyfriend are faced with quite a challenge at this early stage of your relationship! It's a fine line - on the one hand, it's sensible to anticipate that a separation may be difficult, and to take steps to make sure you are still connecting regularly (modern technology makes this much easier than it used to be!). On the other hand, it will be important to enjoy your lives separately, and trust that if your bond is strong, it will survive a period of being apart.

You are quite right in saying that you don't have any way of knowing if distance will make your boyfriend miss you more. You have no control over this, and it will be important that you are using strategies to manage your own anxiety about what that may mean. Keeping yourself busy, spending time with other friends and making sure you are enjoying life would be a good start.

If you and your boyfriend manage this time well, it may even strengthen your relationship - helping you to develop and exercise skills in managing to be happy and fulfilled separately, while also thinking creatively about ways you can still nurture your intimate bond together.


Until next post, Vivienne.

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