This article was provided by Jackson Nursing Professionals.
While travel nursing comes with many ups, long-distance romances can be a downfall if you or your partner aren’t equipped for it. Many travel nurses involved in romantic relationships find themselves maintaining their partnerships from afar. Still, it takes a lot of drive, dedication, and effort from both ends to make it last.
If you’re ready to take your nursing career on the road, but you’re not sure about leaving your significant other behind, here’s how to know if the time is right:
Are you willing to put in the extra communication effort?
Long-distance relationships can work – but it’s work. Surprisingly, research conducted a few years ago shows that long-distance couples can be more satisfied with their communication than couples who live near each other. Wow, right? With that in mind, long-distance requires that you either “over-communicate” or set aside time in a way that works for both of you. For instance, you may need to schedule a video chat every night, make a rule on discussing serious matters through text, or set a time to talk every day. If one end of the relationship starts to drop the conversation, it just can’t work long-term.
Does your partner support your travel nursing career?
One of the many benefits of a relationship is having that steady support system. But, if your partner doesn’t believe in your career as a traveling nurse, you may begin to doubt your decision to travel or even find it difficult to share your experiences. An interesting study conducted by Washington University in St. Louis found that your partner’s personality can play a direct role in whether or not you succeed in your career. According to the study, “workers who scored highest on measures of occupational success tended to have a spouse with a personality that scored high for conscientiousness.” So, a key question to ask yourself might be, “is my partner careful, attentive, hard-working, or ambitious?” If the answer is no, long-distance may not be the best choice for the two of you.
Are you willing to compromise?
According to Dr. Gabrielle Morrisey, before you ask your partner to “give up” something (like your nearness to them), you have to be willing to give up something yourself. It’s only fair. So, if your partner is willing to continue a relationship with you while you work as a traveling nurse, your compromise may be in the number of contracts you do back-to-back, or maybe it’s by traveling together – in between contracts – to areas you’re both interested in. Or, maybe you compromise by communicating more frequently than you might normally, especially if your partner is a better communicator than you. Most relationships require some kind of compromise; long-distance relationships just might (occasionally) require more.
Regardless of the distance between you, relationships are work. So, consider your answer to the above 3 questions before approaching your partner about pursuing a long-distance relationship. It might just save you (or them) a lot of heartache.