Last Peace Corps Long Distance Relationship Standing

My boyfriend informed me a couple weeks ago, that the last couple (besides us) in his PCV group, in a long distance relationship had ended.  So we are it–we are the last Peace Corps long-distance couple standing from his group.

This news, of course, made me reflect.  There have been tough times for me in this relationship, where I felt lonely or a little insecure about what would happen, but ultimately I think the reason we have worked is because we have communicated on almost a daily basis.  I also took my ego and the game playing out of the equation, and let myself cry and be needy sometimes.  I also wrote letters (in a journal) to my boyfriend when I was working through issues to help me sort out feelings, which was generally a great tool and sometimes helped me frame conversations (or reflect on them).

I want to reiterate for anyone thinking of embarking in a long distance relationship with someone in the Peace Corps that communication is key.  This week, we went about a day and a half without a real call or Skype chat and that was a lot of down time for me.  Yes, sometimes that happens, where we can’t have a lot of talk time, but really I do everything possible to make sure we get as much talking together time as possible.  It is so incredibly important.  I guess maybe it is also about how one views the boyfriend/girlfriend dynamic, or what you want for your relationship–but honestly what I want and have is a boyfriend who is my confidante, my support system, my rock and my best friend.  He is the person I love waking up to in the morning (even on Skype) and the one I brush my teeth with at night (again on Skype).  We are not just talking every other day or every week, we speak almost every day. It’s important for me that he knows everything that is going on in my life on a daily basis, and that I know everything that is going on in his.  It keeps us connected as partners.  Again, this might not be the relationship that everyone wants or needs, but this is the one we have chosen and has worked for us.

I also have wondered if the reason we have succeeded in our Peace Corps long-distance relationship is because we are a little older than most volunteers.  Most Peace Corps volunteers are right out of college, but we were a few years older when my boyfriend joined the Peace Corps, late 20s.  Due to our age, my experiences with relationships taught me what I wanted and how rare it was to have found what I did with my boyfriend.  I spent a long time figuring it all out in my 20s, about what worked and what didn’t. So when I finally figured it out, I could finally settle myself down and commit whole-heartedly (even though ironically once I found him, he moved to Africa after dating for a few months).  You have to find the humor in these kinds of things.

So maybe it’s the age, or simply finding the right person.  Whatever it is, if you do want to be in a long-distance relationship with a Peace Corps Volunteer, just remember that communication is the ultimate key.