Long Distance and Law School

By Ashlyn Bourn

When I started law school, I met so many people who started school in long distance relationships, and most of them were over before the midterm… Now, don’t let that freak you out! Most of the time if a long-distance relationship does not work it means it was never meant to be. However, I am here to (hopefully) help you out with some of the bigger long-distance issues.

Law school takes up a lot of time -most of your time actually- and would put a big strain on even a normal relationship, but especially long-distance. So here are some tips and some tricks to help you through it, from someone who knows long-distance very, very well.

Now one tip that might seem a little obvious but needs to be said is that you have to talk, A LOT! Some people are not very into texting or talking on the phone but it kind of comes with the territory of long-distance.  If you are just the kind of person that hates texting and only wants to talk on the phone, I recommend keeping a journal.  Carry it around with you in your backpack, purse, or wherever.  When something significant happens, write it down.  By doing this, you can remember everything that’s been going on when you are talking to your significant other later in the day or week.

Okay, so you need to talk a lot, but you do not have to talk 24/7.  I have seen people in long-distance relationships before who say they talk to their significant other on the phone every day for hours on end.  If you can do this, more power to you, but do not put pressure on your relationship to talk that often.  Every relationship is different, and you will have to find the balance that works best for you.

I also highly recommend sending things to your significant other, especially if you are going a very long amount of time without seeing each other.  Send things like letters, care packages, and just little gifts to let them know you are thinking of them.  It does not have to be extravagant, but it is the thought that counts.

This next tip is for those who will be flying to see their significant other.  If you already have a credit card, make sure that you have one that has great travel benefits.  There are tons of websites out there that tell you what the best travel credit cards are, and how to make the best use of them.  Now don’t go out and rack up a bunch of debt trying to get these points…but if you already have a credit card, why not get some free travel out of it? This can really help when planning trips, because it will put less of a dent on your credit card.

My biggest piece of advice so far is this…Make a schedule! It is likely that your partner works, is in school, or is doing both; and being in law school will keep you plenty busy.  I recommend making out a schedule with your partner months in advance.  Plan out any holidays that the both of you have, and also big days that you know you will be busy, like exam week or a big meeting.  Then, take those schedules and see when the best possible time will be for visits.  This is very important because it will give the both of you a specific date to look forward to when spending time apart, and it can be planned during a time less stressful for both people.  Once again, if you are flying, planning far in advance will also help you get the best price possible on plane tickets.  I hope this advice can help anyone in any way!