They both have to put their work and studies on hold during the lockdown. Though not sure what their future plans will like after this, they’re making the best of the situation.
Abbey met Jason in 2019 while taking a gap year to travel in Europe after graduating from high school. She and one of her friends left their homes in Australia, with a one-way ticket to the UK to start their journey. While they were house-sitting in Southhampton, England, Abbey met Jason on Tinder, and he rode his motorbike to meet her the next day.
“His gorgeous northern English accent surprised me in the best of ways. My friend, being an awesome, protective gal, didn’t let him into the house since we didn’t know him. We ended up walking the suburbs and parks around the house together. He let me have a go on his motorbike and gave me an extremely slow ride around the block (to my parents’ horror!).
We ended up sitting in front of the house until long after the sun went down, talking and laughing and sharing stories. The next night he took me out clubbing, and by the next week, I had spent a couple of nights on his Royal Air Force (RAF) base home. I continued to travel with my friend to finish our UK trip for a week, then went back to stay with him for a week.
We were both falling for each other. However, I carried on with my plan and went to live and work with my grandparents in a town 3 hours from his base. A week into living with my grandparents, he invited me to go to his home town with him, his dad, and friend. I went with him to Northern England, where he introduced me to his family and friends.
We spent those days exploring the countryside, going on motorbike adventures and snuggling in his family’s caravan that they had let us borrow. We also traveled to the Isle of Man, watching the motorbike TT and camping. After a month of bliss, I went back to my grandparents and continued working, seeing him every few weekends and talking on the phone with him every night for about two months.
After earning enough money, I went to Europe and met up with my friend again. I really wanted and needed to continue my travel. While I made my way around Europe, we continued talking on the phone. I booked a flight straight to Northern England after a month of travel, so that we could spend Jason’s work holiday together.
Finally, I arrived back in England and we were reunited. Now for the best part: when he picked me up from the airport, he was so excited that he actually vomited outside! We spent the next few weeks in his home town again, then went down south and stayed on his base until my flight home.
We started talking about long-distance a month into our relationship, basically saying, ‘Fuck it, we love each other.’ So, when the time came for me to fly back to Australia in September, we knew we would see each other again. He came for a visit in December. He spent Christmas with me and my family and we went to Sydney to see the Harbour Bridge fireworks for the New Year.
This was our long term plan: I’d start University in 2020 and go on exchange to England in 2021, where we could see each other all the time. I’d come back to Australia and finish my degree in 2022, then move over to England whilst he finished up in the RAF. In between, we would see each other every few months. When we both finished our studying/training, we planned to travel as much as we could, then end up in Australia.”
Abbey and Jason’s Long-Distance Relationship Challenges During Corona
“Because of the quarantine, I have had to put my degree on hold and move back home. He is in England and has gone home too. He will resume his job once lockdown is over for the UK. He had flights booked to see me this month (for our anniversary), which is not happening now.
I was planning to spend my uni break in England in June. We haven’t seen each other since January. We’re really hoping we can see each other by September.
Because we were long-distance anyway, the closed borders haven’t affected us as much as it has other couples that aren’t used to the distance. Since neither of us is working or studying, we both have a lot of free time for each other. We talk a couple of hours, morning and evening, every day.
Despite that, the idea of not knowing when we’ll see each other is daunting. COVID-19 has messed up our long term plan. With both of our studies on hold, it potentially means that closing the distance will take even longer now. We are waiting until this crisis is over, so we can start to plan how and when we will close the distance.
For us, balance is key. Sometimes we call and just talk, (you do need serious talks, but try and keep things light and funny). Laughing together is the best and will fix almost anything. Sometimes we watch a movie or series, sometimes just do silly things on Facetime, sometimes we do quizzes together or read out memes to each other. And sometimes we sext and do saucy things!
I think that constant contact and reassurance is a big one as well. Having some sort of contact with your significant other every day is very important for me, even just texting or sending silly pics on Snapchat.
Don’t give up! Distance isn’t forever. Keep remembering how you feel when you are together.”