Five weeks after I started dating my boyfriend, David, I moved away for seven months. That was when I really understood how hard long-distance relationships are. Before this, I knew I was going to miss him, and feel lonely. I knew that I might have to deal with some jealousy and insecurity, and that I might feel left out or have communication problems. But there was so much that I hadn’t considered, and when David turned 26 I encountered yet another area that long distance makes more difficult: gift giving.
It’s not only the big gift-giving occasions like birthdays, holidays, or anniversaries that are harder to shop for – the “just because” gifts are, too. When we were living in the same city I loved doing small, specific things for him like buying him a beer after a long day, cooking him dinner, or buying him skittles and eating the flavors he didn’t like.
I know others in long distance relationships have encountered this problem, so here is a list of gift ideas that you might not have thought of yet. They’re good for everything from a birthday to a “just because.”
1. Gift Subscriptions
Beer subscriptions, wine subscriptions, coffee subscriptions, beauty product subscriptions, book subscriptions. The list is never ending! You can get a twelve-pack of specialty craft beers from all over the US, coffee from all over the world, or a new book delivered to them every month while you’re away. You might not be able to actually bring them a glass of wine to relax, but it’s the next best thing.
[Image Sourced from Clubs Of America]
2. Food Delivery
Not able to bring them lunch at work or cook them dinner? It’s just as easy to order their favorite takeout and pay with a credit card over the phone for your long-distance sweetheart as it is to order it for yourself. So make a note of what they like to eat, from where, and you’ll be able to surprise them with your thoughtfulness.
There are a ton of places you can get candy on the web to send to your love. And, even better, you can buy red Skittles, orange Jelly Beans, or green M&Ms! So even if you aren’t there to eat all the ones they don’t like, you can still send them their favorite flavor in bulk.
4. Themed TV Show Care Package
Care packages are popular gift ideas for the long-distance relationship, but try one that is themed around a television show that you both enjoy. I say television and not movie because it can be difficult watching a movie over the phone in two locations if you don’t hit that play button at the exact same time… But if you’re both in the same country, you can watch a TV show together. The care package can be Super Bowl themed, Shark Week themed, or Walking Dead themed. This way you get a fun gift and a date night out of it. Here is an example for inspiration.
5. Name A Star
Cheesy? Maybe, but when I was away from David I felt so disconnected from his location. I was in an environment vastly different from his and the only thing that was consistent between the two of us was the sky. Keep in mind that naming a star is sort of controversial. The name of your star isn’t really recognized by anyone except the company you purchased the star from, so don’t spend a fortune on it. But it’s a unique idea to look up and know that both of you can see the star you named after the two of you.Being away from your significant other can be a difficult experience, peppered with an array of problems and heartaches. Your relationship will inevitably be more difficult to maintain, but there are ways to get through the time apart and see some positives arise from the distance. So try out these unique gifting ideas to help feel closer to your love and make the time go by a little faster.