Breaking Up Due To Distance? Here's How To Work Through It

Relationships can be difficult when the couple lives in the same state, but when the pair lives hundreds of miles apart, it can be even more challenging. Some couples trudge through the trials and stay together, but for others, the burdens created by the distance become too heavy, and the relationship dissolves.


Ending a relationship for any reason can be hard, but if distance is the only reason, it's likely that strong feelings are attached, making it difficult to move forward. So what can you do? What do you do if you recently ended a relationship with someone you still love who lives hundreds of miles away? Grieving a failed relationship isn't the same for everyone. It could take days or weeks for some, and months or longer for others.

The good news is, there are several advantages to getting over a breakup that occurred as the result of long distance, compared to one that didn't. Embracing these benefits can help you work through the breakup and find happiness again. 

Be grateful for the distance

One of the most important aspects of moving forward after a breakup is having closure. For many people, the only way to have that closure is to cut off all communication with the ex. That's why bumping into your ex shortly after the breakup, while you're still grieving, can be detrimental to your emotional healing. Just the sight of them can be a painful reminder that you're no longer together; it could reopen the wounds, stir old feelings, and cause you to relapse in your journey to "getting over them."


Living hundreds of miles away from your ex, on the other hand, eliminates (or at least drastically reduces) the possibility that your paths will cross again in public. That is, unless you need to visit their side of town for a reason that doesn't involve them, or vice versa. Getting over a long-distance ex who you may never see again can actually take much less time than it would for a local ex. Focusing on that perk may help you get through the breakup in a more positive way and move on with your life faster.

Uprooting your life no longer has to be a discussion point

If you and your ex were together long enough, it's likely that you had conversations about the possibility of living together one day. Either they were considering relocating to your direction, or you were thinking of uprooting your life to be closer to them. Or perhaps you were both contemplating moving somewhere completely new for both of you.


Making the decision to move hundreds of miles away for love isn't always an easy decision to make. This is especially true when moving involves sacrificing things you love like your job, your home, your friends, your family, and your surroundings. What if one person lives in New York City and loves the urban hustle and bustle of city life, but their partner lives in rural Birmingham, complete with humidity and Spanish-moss trees? It's a page right out of the 2002 "Sweet Home Alabama" film. They're very different cities, so making the transition from one to the other can be difficult.

In some ways, saying goodbye to your old life can be just as challenging — if not more — than saying goodbye to love. Some people never adjust to the change and end up unhappy, or worse, they end up breaking up anyway. With that in mind, the long-distance breakup might just be for the greater good.


One or both of you can save money on traveling

Whether you lived a couple states away or a couple countries away from your ex, spending physical time together likely involved spending money. Probably a lot of money. Air, bus, or train fares, parking and gasoline fees, hotel fees along your route, and so on — a long-distance relationship can come with a hefty price tag.


Depending on the method of travel, it's not uncommon for someone in such a relationship to pay several hundred dollars every time they visit their partner. A $400 trip, taken several times a year, in addition to the expenses of going out once you're together, isn't ideal for anyone. Some people even go into debt to maintain the relationship.

That's why a breakup can be seen as a form of relief. Financial relief. On the other side of an expensive, long-distance breakup is more money in your pocket and theirs, assuming you were both visiting each other. So embrace it.

You may be able to be long-distance friends or penpals later down the road

If long distance is truly the only reason the relationship failed, hopefully that means there's no ill will, anger, or other negative feelings, and hopefully the breakup was amicable. Parting ways on good terms is sometimes an indicator that a platonic friendship may be possible later down the road, though it may take time to reach this point of comfort.


Ideally, you and your ex should no longer have romantic feelings for each other if you want to maintain a drama-free long-distance friendship. Perhaps with this new relationship, you'll be phone friends only and resort to only calling or texting each other, or both. No in-person connections whatsoever. Or you might want to keep it old-school and write letters like pen pals or correspond exclusively via email or social media.

Of course, being friends with an ex is an option for anyone, regardless of the reason for the breakup, but for a relationship that ended because of distance, it may be a more likely possibility.