Ask Gigi: How Do I Keep Intimacy Alive in a Long-Distance Relationship?
Welcome to Ask Gigi, an advice column where certified sex coach and writer, Gigi Engle, answers your most intimate questions. Nothing is off-limits! From threesomes to anal, unrequited love to cheating: we want to hear it all.
For questions on relationships, sex, or anything else, email Gigi at firstname.lastname@example.org
I’ve been with my partner for nearly two years. We’re long-distance, which is really tough for me. When we’re together we have a ton of sex to make up for lost time, but that doesn’t make it much easier. The time between is hell. Do you have any advice on how to keep intimacy alive in a long-distance relationship? Because I’m going crazy.
Thanks for writing in. You can totally pull off an LTR, you just have to be willing to do the work. It takes both of you putting in the work to make it thrive. That’s the first bit of advice: You both need to be in this 100 percent.
Keep conversation fresh and communication open
As anthropologist Wednesday Martin, PhD., points out in her book Untrue, the key to healthy sexual and romantic relationships over the long term is spontaneity. It doesn’t matter if your partner lives 5 miles or 500 miles away, keeping it fresh is important.
This isn’t all about being sexy or hot, it’s about sparking continual curiosity in your relationship.
Keep conversations interesting. Don’t make it all about saying how much you miss and love each other all the time. Send funny memes, send jokes, and create a narrative that makes you a part of each other’s lives no matter how far apart you are.
You want to be best friends as well as lovers. Even though you partner is not with you, be sure they’re the first person you tell about that annoying thing Karen from accounting did yesterday or the how you finally got that raise you wanted.
Keep your communication consistent! Send videos, texts, and photos all day long. You would if they were close by, right? This shouldn’t be any different.
Have regular (video) sex
Just because you’re apart doesn’t mean sex is pushed to the wayside. Distance does not negate your physical need for intimacy. Make sure you’re having regularly scheduled sex dates either on the phone or on video chat. Rile your partner up with some anticipatory sexting during the day.
Get creative. If you’re up for it, sneak into the bathroom at work and lift your shirt for a quickie naked pic. Why not?
You want to make sure the relationship feels fresh, no matter how depressing it feels when you’re apart.
Have lots of video sex and stay on a schedule. Video chat is the preferred medium for virtual sex dates because while you’re not in the same place, seeing each other and looking into each other’s eyes makes you feel closer.
Bring in the toys! Try sexy outfits or new lingerie. Use a vibrator while your partner watches. This can all be super hot.
Make your time together count
Long-term, long distance relationships mean you have sporadic and limited time together in the same place. Whether you’re with you SO for three days or three weeks, try to make it count. Make sure you’re doing fun things and making plans. Don’t just sit around and watch Netflix. Have a spontaneous sexy time together.
LDRs aren’t all sad. The time you have together is extra special.
This is one of those silver linings to all that missing each other; when you’re together it’s super special. Make sure you remind each other of this. Make fun plans, do activities, and have a LOT of sex.
Lastly, you need to plan for the future
When it comes to a long distance relationship, you need to be able to see the light at the end of the tunnel. While living in different cities, states, or countries can work for a while, you need to reinforce the idea that at some point, the distance will be worth it.
The long distance couples that survive are the ones who see a future together and are willing to work for and towards it. Both of you need to put plans into place to build a life together and not let anything stand in the way.
You have to go the distance for love … literally.
I hope this helps! Stay sexy and remember, long-distance relationships can (and do!) totally work. I’m currently doing semi-long distance with my husband and trust me, our video sex is HOTTTTT.
Sections of this column originally appeared on Dame Products’, The Horizontal
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