Long Distance Gay Dating: Make the Heart Grow Fonder?

Doublelist Team

January 30, 2023 11 minutes read
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So, you’re in an LDR (long-distance relationship), huh? Somehow your happy romance went from an in-person affair to phone tag and “I miss you” messages. Or maybe you’re a true masochist. Perhaps you’ve been long distance gay dating since the start.

However you got into this predicament, we’re sure your head’s swirling. Part of you is wondering if it’ll last. Part of you is sick of lonely nights and itching to have a sex life again. Another part is stubbornly telling yourself that your relationship is the exception and it’ll stand the test of time. And some part of you can’t get “Near, far, wherever you are” from that Celine Dion song out of your head.

Deep breaths. Let’s break it down. Consider this your ultimate gay long-distance relationship survival guide. Complete with simple steps to keep your LDR thriving and answers to all your burning questions. (Yes, we even have info for you people who are actively seeking out long-distance situations.) Close out your anxiety-inducing text threads, and keep reading.

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Can Long Distance Gay Dating or Relationships Last?

Yes, long distance gay dating or relationships can last. We know, everyone has strong opinions on this topic. Some people swear that it’s doomed if you’re not in the exact location as the person you’re dating. They tell you the separation will slowly tear you apart or that someone will crack and sleep with someone else.

Others say that long distance dating only works if it’s true love. You or your partner moving far away isn’t automatically the death of your dating life. But it also doesn’t mean that the challenges of dating magically disappear just because there’s mutual love and care.

The truth is it takes a hell of a lot of effort. Separation adds another difficulty to your dynamic. Things that were once simple because of proximity now become complicated. Throw in the logistics of time differences, scheduling conflicts, and stress, and it’s no wonder LDRs get a bad rap.

But if all parties want it and put their all into keeping this relationship alive, distance couples can last.

Average Length of a Long Distance Relationship

The data on the average length of a long distance relationship isn’t consistent. One German study says that LDRs last just under three years. But another recent 2022 statistic on relationships says they end after 4.5 months of separation.

That same data set puts the success rate of LDRs at 58%, which isn’t as pessimistic as it sounds. Sure, is 58% the score you want on a test? Probably not. But it puts your long distance gay dating odds of success at better than half.

Another thing to remember is that you don’t know the people behind these studies. So, before you write off your situation, give yourself credit.

You get to decide if your distance dating succeeds or not. You don’t know what steps others are taking or how their relationship was before throwing distance into the mix. Enough naysaying or doomsday-predicting. Roll up your sleeves and get into some action items to turn you into a gay LDR pro.

How to Survive Gay Long Distance Relationships: Step by Step


Before we get into the step-by-step process of surviving gay long distance relationships, take a minute to congratulate yourself. Not to get all self-help book, but the secret first step to this process is actively seeking out solutions.

If you’re reading this, you care about your relationship. You want long distance gay dating to work for you. You didn’t just through in the towel the minute the topic came up. You’re willing to think about it and maybe even give it a shot. Not only that, but you know you need a plan to make this thing happen. We’ve put together six tips for gay couples that want to go the distance.

Every dating scenario or relationship is different. But use these tips as your jumping-off point. Discuss them with your partner and figure out what’s the best fit for you both. Buckle up; we’re about to go deeper into each of these tips.

Long Distance Gay Dating Tip #1: Set Expectations

When it comes to LDRs, the first place people go wrong is by failing to set expectations. They don’t have a frank conversation with the other parties involved to figure out the ground rules. This leads to one person thinking one thing was off-limits while the other thought it was totally cool.

For example, many gay couples bring up the issue of exclusivity while discussing distanced relationships. Whether you’re in a mitted relationship or just casually dating, it’s essential that everyone’s on the same page. You don’t want to think you could find a local hookup, but your partner calls you out for cheating. Talk about a recipe for a breakup.

Before the big move, have a sit-down to get all concerns and questions out in the open. Or if you’re starting out already separated, have a call at the start of your long distance gay dating adventure. Then, and this is the crucial part, confirm that you both agreed on every talking point.

Long Distance Gay Dating Tip #2: Have a Finish Line in Site

You know what makes running a race easier? The promise of the finish line. The second reason gay long distance relationships fail is that there isn’t a clear end in sight. It’s complicated and sometimes painful to be away from your person. It causes stress and strain on even the best relationships.

For the most part, people don’t want to continue to feel this way forever. So you and the other parties involved need to discuss when you will be living in the same place again. Depending on your arrangement, it could be when a job ends, a school course finishes, or a family responsibility lifts. Whatever it is keeping you two apart, identify it and decide when that barrier lifts.

Of course, life happens. Sometimes you think you’ll only have to be apart for a year. Then things outside of your control pop up and push back that finish line. What does that mean? Time to renegotiate. We know, not the most romantic phrasing. But that’s what it is. You need to go back to the drawing board and discuss reuniting again.

Long Distance Gay Dating Tip #3: Schedule Visits

Pitstop! The next long distance gay dating tip is to schedule visits with each other. This doesn’t have to be a marathon. You don’t have to go all gas, no breaks until that finish line. You can schedule visits to see each other to relieve some of that pressure.

Protip: Have at least one trip booked and planned before you two part ways. With this plan, you have something to look forward to.

Additionally, if both of you can travel to one another, do that. Don’t have just one person doing all the traveling. That person might start to feel like they’re putting in all the effort, and no one wants resentment building up.

Of course, sometimes you can’t make visits happen. Whether it’s a financial or work thing, sometimes you have to tough it out to that finish line. In those cases, we recommend finding new ways to spend time together.

There are so many types of online connections you can use to beat feelings of loneliness. Video calls, online games, and even VR headsets are all tech-savvy ways to feel close.

Long Distance Gay Dating Tip #4: Spice Things Up

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Time for some sexual healing. Few things bring people together like sex. For many couples stuck in the long distance gay dating dance, physical intimacy is what they miss the most. So why not keep that spark alive by adding some kindling to your flirty fire? Here are some sensual strategies to try:

  1. Dirty texting. Surprise your partner with a little Call me by Your Name-level dirty talk. Keep their degradation kink going with bossy texts and voice messages. Soothe their ego with aching praise kink-themed Snapchats. Or cut to the chase with seductive photos or nudes.
  2. Naughty Cam Sessions. Onlyfans who? Date night video calls don’t have to be all candlelight and catching up on your day. Incorporate sexy underwear, a virtual peep show, or mutual masturbation to drive each other wild.
  3. Sex Toys. If it’s in your budget, you can spring for remote-controlled vibrators or other ideas for long distance sex toys. But if not, your special someone will still feel excited if you send some tantalizing toys their way. Want to go the extra mile? Personalize it with a note telling them how you’d use it on them if you were there.

Long Distance Gay Dating Tip #5: Communicate, Communicate, Communicate

Have you noticed a theme with our tips so far? Talks. Discussions. Check-ins. The bottom line: communication is key. This is true even when you’re in the same city as your S.O. Any meaningful relationship needs communication to survive and thrive.

That means telling each other when you’re feeling insecure or you have worries about your relationship. It means sharing the tiny victories in your daily life and sharing the everyday life boring details. And, of course, communicating equals telling each other you miss them, care about them, and you value them. However you and your partner(s) express care to each other, keep that going during long distance gay dating.

But here’s the catch: make sure you two match up on your communication style. Some people thrive off of constant communication, but to others, it feels controlling, like you’re checking up on a child. Other people don’t express themselves well over text or get uncomfortable with “words of affirmation”-style love languages.

How do you figure out what’s the right amount of communication? Take a guess. (Talk about it!)

Long Distance Gay Dating Tip #6: Enjoy Your Alone Time

Our last long distance dating tip is (drumroll please) enjoy your time apart. It’s understandable to yearn for your lover. And sometimes, keeping that spark going can feel like a full-time job. But you can’t make your whole life about them just because they’re gone. You also need to focus on yourself and where you are now in real time.

Doing this helps you to be healthier and happier, which means your LDR will be too. Feelings of jealousy, resentment, and frustration pop up not just from ignoring all the other tips we’ve given you. Those emotions spring up when you’re forgetting to enjoy life outside of long distance gay dating. Do that, and encourage your partner to do the same.

Finding a Gay Long Distance Dating Site?

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We’ve talked a lot about people who are long-distance by happenstance. But we know some of you want a queer long-distance romance. You’re fantasizing about an attachment that can overcome time zones and borders. There isn’t a service (that we know of) that’s exclusively a gay long distance dating site.

However, you can use many dating sites as an LDR love connection. Like Match.com, Zoosk, and eHarmony. None of these sites but location-limits on users. So if you want a man 3,000 miles away, go for it.

That said, many gay dating apps do put the kibosh on long distance gay dating. Grindr, for example, is location-specific. It aims to connect you with singles in your area ASAP. Same with Hinge and Scruff. Still, you could use either of these apps along with Tinder and Hornet while traveling. Set up your profile and link your location; you’ll find casual encounters, dating, and relationship-seekers near you. Then once you leave, bam. You’ve got yourself a long-distance relationship (if that’s what you’re after).

Alternatives to Long Distance Gay Dating

Not everyone’s cut out for distance dating. If you’re looking to cut the BS and find someone nearby, try DoubleList: the best place to find hookups, love, and more. Here, you can respond to or write adult personals.

Get as intimate as you want, and feel free to go from online dating to a long distance relationship. No matter your sexuality or how many people you want to have sex, you can find it on DoubleList. And, of course, your anonymity is always protected. Sign up for a free account today!

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