Assalamualaikum… How can one maintain a long-distance relationship with one’s spouse and keep communication and romance alive within the couple?
Note: The question has been edited according to the client’s request.
Wa alaikumassalam wa rahmatullahi wabarakatuhu
Long-distance relationships are never easy, but thousands of people get through this set-up each and every day. You and your significant other can find a way to make your relationship work despite the distance. However, it will require a lot of work.
Although it can be frustrating, challenging, and even downright lonely, it’s not impossible. With a love that’s strong enough to last, and trust between you and your partner, you can get through anything. Irrespective of the circumstances, it all comes down to adjusting your mindset, including the way you think about marriage and having a plan for staying connected and reunited.
Here are a few tips which would help you to stay connected:
1. Communicate regularly
The most important thing in a long-distance marriage is to make sure that you are communicating regularly. Since physical intimacy isn’t possible, you need to make up for it to keep the spark alive. The written and spoken words are particularly powerful here. Be careful of what you say. When you are able to connect, make the most of your conversations by sharing the details of your day. Discuss what is happening at work and at home. Tell each other about friends and family. Express your feelings for each another.
2. Stay in touch
Even couples who live together can sometimes drift apart, making it more likely for spouses who live separately to move in different directions. One way to prevent this from happening is to stay connected. That means you could make goals for how often you communicate and work to stick to them. With technology like Skype and WhatsApp, there’s no reason you cannot communicate and connect no matter where you are.
3. Make your spouse feel loved and special
When you’re apart, you might find yourself feeling a bit lonely. Appreciating each other can help you and your spouse continue to feel supported. For instance, you could send an encouraging message to your spouse before a big meeting, or send them flowers. These gestures do wonders in keeping the romance alive and remind your spouse that they’re still a priority in your heart.
If you’re both up for it, you can try connecting on a deeper level to make up for the lack of physical intimacy. Maybe video chat so you can experience the feeling of having your spouse in front of you as you share your day.
4. Work through your trust issues
One of the biggest problems we see in long-distance couples is trust. Speak openly with your spouse about your concerns, and accept any reassurance he or she provides. The more trust you put in your spouse, the more likely he or she will trust you in return.
One of the best ways to work through trust issues in a relationship is to show your spouse that you are, in fact, thinking about him or her throughout the day. Send a thoughtful text message when your spouse least expects it to show that you care. Something as simple as, “Hey, just wanted to say I love and miss you!” can go a long way. That little message would quickly brighten up your spouse’s day.
5. Make the most of the time you get together
Perhaps the biggest thing you miss in a long-distance relationship is the ability to just spend casual time with the other person in your relationship. You don’t get to be with your husband when he gets home from work, or watch your wife make you breakfast in the morning. With that in mind, you can create the feeling of hanging out with your spouse by setting up a Skype chat while you have your meals. Even if one person is having breakfast while the other is preparing for dinner, you can still feel like you’re in the same room.
6. Change your attitude
Being separated from the person you’re madly in love with can hardly seem like a positive thing. But where you can’t immediately change your circumstances, you can change your attitude.
Frustrating as it might seem to be separated, try to think of a few ways your long-distance relationship is actually beneficial. Do you have more time for hobbies, or for working out, or spending time with friends and family? Make a list of the positive aspects of the long distance, and focus on these during the harder days when the distance is really getting to you.
7. Respect the reason you’re apart
There’s no doubt you’ll have days when your long-distance relationship seems difficult. You might even be tempted to do something impulsive, like quitting your job or dropping out of school, so you can be together with the person you love.
While that might sound romantic, remember there’s an important reason you’re living far away from the person you love right now. That reason may hinge on a professional, financial, or family situation that needs to play out properly until the timing is right for you both to be together geographically.
Don’t let months or years of progress go to waste out of impatience to be together. Your relationship will be stronger in the long run if you finish what you’ve started, and finish it well.
Pray to Allah ﷻ to give you sabr and bless your marriage with a love as that of our beloved Prophet Muhammad ﷺ and Khadhija RA.
In Islam, the relationship between a husband and wife is a strong bond which needs to be nurtured with kindness, love and mercy. It is a sacred contract made before Allah ﷻ. And it isn’t always easy. It takes some hard work from both sides. It is crucial to understand that this life is just a means to a greater end and that all that we do in this world is a journey for us to reach Allah ﷻ. Your marriage is a tool to bring you closer to Allah ﷻ.
Our Prophet ﷺ understood love and marriage more than any other human. The perfection of character that he ﷺ displayed specifically within marriage is greatly beneficial to study to enhance our own marriage. It is so significant that Allah ﷻ mentions it in the Qur’an as one of His great signs in the world:
“And of His signs is that He created for you from yourselves mates that you may find tranquillity in them; and He placed between you affection and mercy. Indeed in that are signs for a people who give thought.”
May Allah ﷻ bless your marriage and make it easy for you. Ameen.
Written by: Fouzia Rehaman
Edited by: The Editorial Team
© The Islamic Reflections Blog