The J-Train is coming through and he’s got the dating advice you need!
From the long line of WWN advice columns (i.e. Dear Dotti, Ask a Chimp, etc) comes a new breed of intrepid advice giver. It’s Jared Freid aka J-Train. A frequent dater and lover…
Q. As a chick I must say your articles are pretty dead on from my experience. What is your take on long distance relationships? Are they worth it? And how do you know? How far away is too far? Any advice on this topic would be great. – Laura Winslow, Chicago, IL
Here’s the bad news: The Long Distance Relationship is never easy – shocker, huh? (That’s why they pay me the Weekly World News money.) But are they worth it? That’s a hell of a big question, but I’m not one to shy away from anything big (this is a double entendre directed at some of you heavier girls – wink, wink, nudge, nudge, obvious, obvious – Oh man what have I become?). So let’s dive into deciding factors.
This is actually pretty simple math – Distance is inversely proportional to the probability that the relationship will actually pan out. If you’re in New York and he’s in Philly, well, hell, your a train ride away (this may actually be more healthy than living in the same city) – weekends together are easy, your friend groups probably interact, and it’s likely you lead similar day-to-day lives. But let’s say you’re in Tucson and he’s spending a couple years in Thailand; you can pretty much forget it. I know you had a tearful goodbye in the terminal, and you bought a plane ticket only so you could walk him to the gate, and you each put your hands up to the windows as his plane pulled off the tarmac; but I’m pretty sure he spent the second hour of that flight on his iPad playing with the “Asian Hooker Finder App” while he listens to ‘Me So Horny’ by 2 Live Crew. And it’s not only because Thailand is thousands of miles away; the moment he steps off that plane in the Far East, you officially have very little in common – you see, everyone thinks that if you both liked Gremlins 2 when you were a kid, that you’re meant to be together; ‘We like the same quirky crap!’ Well, I call bullshit – what determines compatibility isn’t your shared obsession with art you have no real connection to; it’s the lives you lead everyday and the choices you make in the face of all that – Who you are really. So if he’s really the type to spend two years in Thailand without you – leading a completely different life – then move on; he’s clearly less invested than you are.
‘But J-Train,’ you ask, ‘What about the in-between? You know, like Dallas to Chicago, or San Francisco to Boston?’ Well, the good news is I saw a movie about this exact thing with Drew Barrymore and the guy from the Apple ads. The bad news is I fell asleep. But I think it ended in a murder-suicide, and Drew Barrymore had to submerge herself in molten steel to save the future from being taken over by machines. Anyway, determining whether the ‘in-between’ (5 hours or less flight time) is worth it depends on a few factors:
Money matters more in relationships than anyone cares to admit, and this is magnified in any long distance relationship. Can you afford the plane ticket? Do you have your own apartment, or at least your own room when your boyfriend visits? Can you afford a nice web-cam to awkwardly cyber? If you can’t see the person regularly, then your relationship will fail. This shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone. If you can’t make a physical/visual connection at least once a month, then you don’t have a boyfriend, you have a pen pal.
Are you the jealous type? Then you are in trouble. Being away from someone makes it easy for your mind to create something that isn’t there. Let’s say you get a text from your girlfriend saying: “Going to Dave and Buster’s for some skee-ball!! Call you tomorrow”. Now that’s a pretty harmless text, but if you’re the crazy type, the distance makes you think, “who are Dave and Buster, and why hasn’t she mentioned these friends before? And what the hell kind of hand job is a skee-ball? And why is she calling me tomorrow instead of tonight? 85 straight texts and phone calls until she is as miserable as I am will fix this!” See how that works? End it; otherwise you will start the arduous process of driving that relationship into the ground you nut job.
And what makes it even harder is that some nights, he may not want to talk to you. It may have nothing to do with you – maybe it was just a long, hard day. Do you have the strength to be 500 miles away, hearing a disembodied, exhausted voice and not ask, ‘Is this about us?’
You asked at the beginning, ‘How do you know?’ I honestly can’t answer that for you. I do know this, soul mates don’t exist, so grow up and ask yourself this: Do you see yourselves together in the near future? How about the not-so-near future? And is that future a truly happy one? Or is he getting skee-balled by Buster in Dave’s weird sex dungeon?
Each one of these factors has to be taken into account, and it takes some real honest looks at yourself and your relationship. And if you really want to make it work, make sure you manipulate your birth control so you’re not menstruating the whole week he visits. Please.
Do you have dating questions for J-Train? … Email me!
Follow J-Train on Twitter … http://twitter.com/#!/jtrain56