It’s time again for “Dear Wendy Updates,” a feature where people I’ve given advice to in the past let us know whether they followed the advice and how they’re doing now. Today, we hear from “Overwhelmed in a LDR” who quickly began a LDR with a European man she met while he was visiting the states on vacation. After getting engaged, things went south when the distance began to feel insurmountable, they couldn’t agree on where to live, and the LW began cheating on her fiancé. “I have all these doubts in my head,” she wrote, “but I can’t deny how in love I am and that I still see a future with him regardless of all our problems.” Keep reading to see whether they overcame their obstacles and are still together.
We were facing a very unique situation. International LDR couples contemplate which continent will become home, what language and citizenship their children will adopt, and how much those overseas family plane tickets will cost. In addition to everything normal couples face, they face this extra burden. This is what we needed help with. We were afraid of the unknown and experienced a common human response: defensiveness. Consequently, we wanted to try every helpful thing we could to nurture our relationship instead and help it grow, like enlisting the help of experienced parties (all of you!).
This problem did prove to be difficult, and I will be the first to admit that LDR couples are forced to work harder on communication than most! While asking for guidance provided more emotional opinions than helpful ideas to improve our relationship, my attempts were not fruitless! I began thinking of what we would lose, should we not be able to overcome this hurdle. That is quite a force.
I’m so proud to announce that not only did we keep our lovey-dovey feeling, but each discussion and each disagreement has given us an opportunity to prove our strength together and our committment in the face of trial and tribulation with mature and gentle conversations. We’ve found a country that is easier for me to immigrate to and provides career opportunities for both of us (yes, we’re BOTH learning a different language!). We are planning on making the move early next year and are thrilled to finally be making this exciting transition!
I hope this provides encouragement and optimism to international LDR couples. Will you need more than the love you feel? Yes and no. Yes, in that love is work, and sometimes that work is unpleasant. It’s dangerous to believe that once you fall in love, that and that alone will carry you through. Love is every day, and it must be nurtured or it will fade. But, every single thing you do in your relationship will revolve around love. Love is taking time off work, communicating with patience, and visiting in-laws. You try because you love, and that should always be the focus, no matter what comes your way or who disagrees. This is our focus, and it has given us everything we need!
Thank you for your update and congratulations on working through some of your initial obstacles. Best of luck to you as you begin a new chapter in your life and your relationship!
If you’re someone I’ve given advice to in the past, I’d love to hear from you, too. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with a link to the original post, and let me know whether you followed the advice and how you’re doing now.
If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, you can send me your letters at email@example.com.