-- Robert Preidt
FRIDAY, July 19 (HealthDay News) -- Does distance really make
the heart grow fonder? Maybe so: According to a new study, people
in long-distance romantic relationships can form stronger bonds
than those in normal relationships.
Dating couples in long-distance and normal relationships told
researchers about their daily interactions using different methods:
face-to-face, phone calls, video chat, texting, instant messaging
For a week, the participants reported to what extent they shared
about themselves and experienced intimacy, and how much they they
felt their partners did the same thing, for the study in the June
issue of the
Journal of Communication.
Long-distance couples had greater feelings of intimacy due to
two factors: They disclosed more about themselves and they
idealized their partners' behaviors, said study authors Crystal
Jiang of City University of Hong Kong and Jeffrey Hancock of
Long-distance relationships are increasingly common and people
use many kinds of communications technologies to maintain their
romantic bonds, a journal news release noted. Recent figures show
that 3 million married couples in the United States live apart.
Between 25 percent and 50 percent of college students are currently
in long-distance relationships and up to 75 percent have had one at
Even so, many people believe that long-distance relationships
"Indeed, our culture emphasizes being together physically and frequent face-to-face contact for close relationships, but long-distance relationships clearly stand against all these values. People don't have to be so pessimistic about long-distance romance," Jiang said in a journal news release. "The long-distance couples try harder than geographically close couples in communicating affection and intimacy, and their efforts do pay back."
Oregon State University's Counseling and Psychological Services
offers advice about
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