A phone dating relationship comes with a ton of perks. One of the biggest perks about having a phone dating (where most of the relationship is spent on the phone rather than in person) relationship is the amount of space it provides both you and your partner. Your significant other is just a phone call away, but not on top of you. It’s not that you don’t want your partner to be around, but space is healthy and necessary in any relationship. And, while space can be a nice perk, it’s also the biggest disadvantage to phone dating relationships. In fact, that space can cause strain and stress on the relationship. So, how does a phone dating couple absorb the pros of space without letting the stress of it get in the way of their happiness?
It’s important first to address what this space or distance can actually cause. Starting with the positive side of the spectrum, space can cause the heart to grow fonder. You’ve heard the saying, absence makes the heart grow fonder, and most of the time, it does! Think about times when you’ve missed your phone dating partner, and then you finally get to see him/her. How magical does that time feel? Does it strengthen your bond? More than encouraging a sense of yearning in the relationship, space also allows for people in phone dating relationships to truly live their truths and their dreams. Rather than fostering codependency, individuals are free to live their lives. According to various studies, codependent relationships are far more likely to fail and breed toxicity than relationships between two independent partners.
Now, let’s address the stressors. What stress does distance or space cause? It can absolutely lead to paranoia within a pair, distrust, and anxiety over losing the relationship altogether. All of those feelings are terrifying, and not something that any sane person wants himself/herself or his/her partner to feel.
(Similar to this article: How to Express Doubt in a Chat Line Relationship)
If you feel yourself plagued with these feelings, you’ll want to start by addressing the core reason that you feel this way. You need to determine if your worry is even warranted in the first place. For example, let’s pretend your anxiety in your phone dating relationship is that your partner is cheating on you, and you feel this way because he/she has been calling less and less. The fact that your partner is calling less and less is the ‘why’ in this situation. It’s why you have anxiety. Before jumping to any conclusions, carefully examine that why. Try to gather context clues that give your partner the benefit of the doubt. Did he/she get a promotion at work? Did he/she disclose any family issues that are surfacing? There are a ton of legitimate reasons as to why someone is establishing distance.
If you can’t determine a legitimate reason for why your partner is calling less and less (or doing any other behaviour that is causing you to stress), you can absolutely ask your partner. However, because most of the narrative is going on inside your own head at this point, you’ll want to approach this issue in a lighthearted way. You can call your phone dating partner and say something like, “Hey Jason! We’ve been talking less and less, so I wanted to check in on you and make sure you are OK.” This gives your partner (Jason in this example) the chance to tell you if the distance is not personal and rather due to something specific going on in his/her life outside of the relationship. Additionally, it shows that you feel concerned for both your partner and the relationship, without bombarding your partner.
Your partner is going to respond in one of three ways. Your partner might either respond by telling you his personal problem, expressing his doubts in the relationship, or pretending that everything is fine. You need to absorb his response and let it marinate before jumping into an action that you might regret. If your partner expresses a personal problem and tells you he/she needs space, then give him/her that space. Reach out periodically to make sure he is OK. If your partner expresses problems in the relationship, don’t panic. In fact, this should relieve stress as it gives you an answer to the ‘why’ and also gives you a starting point to begin working on the relationship. If your partner pretends that everything is OK, you’ll need to probe a bit further.
If after calmly questioning your partner, you still do not have answers, you’ll need to hit him/her with an ‘I feel.’ The ‘I feel’ is a way to express your anxiety to your partner. In the example we’ve been working with, the ‘I feel’ might sound something like this: “Jason, I feel anxiety because we haven’t been speaking. I need to hear from you more or understand why there’s been distance.” You might fear sounding needy, but you shouldn’t. A person who you enter a partnership with is supposed to respect your feelings. A person who you enter in to a phone relationship with should be able to comprehend why distance is anxiety-inducing. Here’s why expressing what you feel and need relieves stress: It gets these feelings off your chest, allows for your partner to react, or allows you to end the relationship. Think about it. If your partner doesn’t change after you express these feelings, it is time to move on. You can’t control anyone but yourself and relationships should not produce feelings of intense anxiety. If they do, both partners should at least work out how to subdue the anxiety.