Why don't long-distance relationships last?

One study found that 40% of long-distance relationships fail. Conflict resolution can be difficult in long-distance relationships. When you're face-to-face, not only is there a greater chance of grasping nonverbal communication, but you can't sit with your partner after conflict. For 40% of people long-distance relationships don't work, there are 60% who have a lasting relationship.

Last but not least, a long-distance relationship will never work if you rely too much on the physical expression of love and intimacy. Most couples don't make it and often break up during the first few months of an LDR just because they crave pleasure that can't be satisfied with simple phone calls or texts. I once left Skype on for 2 days. My boyfriend and I treat him like we live together.

We performed our individual tasks and from time to time, we would stop by our laptops to talk. We had breakfast, lunch and dinner together. We slept next to each other (next to our laptops) and woke up to each other's faces. Then I did it all over again.

There are times when you cry out of nowhere because you feel so damn lonely. You're in a relationship, but you're very unhappy. You close your eyes sometimes, count to 10, and before you open them, there is a little hope in you that the person you love is right in front of you. Sometimes you get lost in your video calls and touch the screen of your laptop thinking you could feel the warmth of his face.

And it makes you feel bad. Any relationship that makes you feel as miserable, helpless, and ultimately hopeless as an LDR does is not a good or healthy relationship. If you have the feeling that your long-distance relationship isn't working, look at what contributes to thinking or what causes the long-distance breakup. When you have a plan for how long your long-distance relationship will last, you'll know when you'll be able to live together.

Look, I really hope that long-distance relationships can work, but the harsh reality is that most of the time they don't. Overwhelmingly, the dozen people I interviewed about their relationships for this story said they would rather be long-distance now, rather than 20 or 50 years ago. As a result, long-distance relationships usually exist in a state of suspended honeymoon, where everything is bright and happy, but devoid of the reality that is necessary to determine if the relationship will ultimately sink or swim. A long-distance relationship or any relationship for that matter will never work if you don't love each other enough.

This is because time and distance won't really matter as long as you look at your relationship from the right point of view. This will allow the relationship to have some forward movement so that it does not exist in a suspended state for too long. Your long-distance relationship is more likely to fail if you don't deal with the baggage it brings to your relationship from past experiences. Many long-distance relationships fail because couples don't recognize that a long-distance relationship can only function healthily for a short period of time.

Long-distance relationships fail because couples don't plan how long the distance will last and how they will manage their relationship in the meantime. Another broad demographic pattern that could foster long-distance professional relationships is that having a bachelor's degree correlates with marrying later in life, leaving a stage of life after college, perhaps a few years, maybe even a decade that can be cordoned off for career development before forming a family.

Constance Thuringer
Constance Thuringer

Freelance coffee practitioner. Freelance social media lover. Infuriatingly humble pop culture evangelist. Unapologetic internet scholar. General bacon specialist.