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CherishSweetThings

How do you make your relationship work when you have a big time zone difference?

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I met a wonderful man here in SL recently.  He had me almost at Hello! I could tell from day one that he was special and we have been connecting almost every day since we met. It has not been too long yet and we're still very new, but we're trying to work out some of the things in our new SL relationship that are posing a few small challenges.  The main one is time zone and maybe, well, time itself! He lives in Australia and I live in the USA. We are 16 hours apart! My  late afternoon and night is his early morning and daytime.  Somehow, we have made it work out so far, since he works alone at home during the day and I am on my computer at night. But of course we have to keep a balance between SL and RL.  We've been talking about ideas for how to best do this, and decided to try dedicating two days/nights (depending on which country you're talking about!) a week to spending extra time together online. The rest of the days/nights we will still spend time together when we can, but will try not to make those stretch out for hours on end.  What do you all think? Is there anyone else on here who has been faced with these challenges?  What do you do to keep your RL and your SL relationship in balance?

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Though I've never been big into SL relationships, I have some experience in long distance online relationships.

The best thing is to try your best to set dedicated hours to when you expect to see each other. Luckily SL has SLT so you're less likely to get confused about what hours to get online. If you miss a day, it's not the end of the world, but try to keep your promises to each other about when to be online.

Also, it's important to occasionally find games or activities to enjoy together. This helps with bonding as well as keeps you two from running out of things to talk about with each other. It can help keep things fresh for longer.

Having such a large time gap can be difficult. Long distance online relationships in general can be difficult, so be sure to take things day by day. Try to keep yourself occupied until the next time you see each other. Don't dwell on things and don't think the worst when something doesn't go as planned. If you two run into any problems, try to talk to them out as soon as the time is right.

Good luck with your relationship!

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I've had instances where I changed my sleep schedule so that I slept when I got home from work and got up in the middle of the night when my partner got home so we could be together. It 'works' until you actually need to do something in RL - like, go shopping or hang out with your RL friends. I can't recommend it.

Personally I think a relationship should be able to thrive even if you can only see each other a few times a week, I know I need self-time as well else I end up restless. Yet, most people I've dated in SL freak out if they can't get 8 hours a day with me, which very quickly gets suffocating no matter how much you like the person.

Play games, whether in SL (Greedy, chess, anything), watch movies/series (rabb.it is your friend), hang out with friends together to socialize.

Don't see the time difference as an obstacle that needs to be overcome, learn to work with it instead.

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6 hours ago, CherishSweetThings said:

He lives in Australia and I live in the USA. We are 16 hours apart!

You need to take a more positive approach to this :)
Its not 16 hours... Everything, whats more then 12 timezones apart, "catches up" from the other side, because earth should be a sphere.
Means, in fact you just have a difference of 8 hours. At lunchtime (12pm) in Australia, its evening (8 pm) at your place. Sounds much better, doesnt it?

I think, there is no real balance in terms of everything is easy or perfect. You or him will always kinda "suffer", because its very early or very late for you or him.
But you figured out a good solution already. Meet him as often as your hearts ask for, go sleeping before you fall from your chair and dont forget your RL friends and tasks.
Then you make the best out of that situation.

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2 hours ago, CherishSweetThings said:

thanks everybody. I am a firm believer that time zone does not really matter.  I guess its more of how we spend the time we have.  I am sure we will figure it out. This one is a keeper!

Love your attitude about trying to make it work.  One of my best friends in SL is from Tokyo Japan (14 hours) difference.  Her evenings are my mornings, vice-versa.  If you can get up a tad earlier to connect with his evenings that would be helpful and same with him.  I also found weekends more flexible to connect as well.  If you make a concerted effort to connect up on a regular basis it can work:}

 

 

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On 2/28/2018 at 1:11 PM, CherishSweetThings said:

I met a wonderful man here in SL recently.  He had me almost at Hello! I could tell from day one that he was special and we have been connecting almost every day since we met. It has not been too long yet and we're still very new, but we're trying to work out some of the things in our new SL relationship that are posing a few small challenges.  The main one is time zone and maybe, well, time itself! He lives in Australia and I live in the USA. We are 16 hours apart! My  late afternoon and night is his early morning and daytime.  Somehow, we have made it work out so far, since he works alone at home during the day and I am on my computer at night. But of course we have to keep a balance between SL and RL.  We've been talking about ideas for how to best do this, and decided to try dedicating two days/nights (depending on which country you're talking about!) a week to spending extra time together online. The rest of the days/nights we will still spend time together when we can, but will try not to make those stretch out for hours on end.  What do you all think? Is there anyone else on here who has been faced with these challenges?  What do you do to keep your RL and your SL relationship in balance?

As an Aussie myself, currently with a German partner - but in the past having USA partners - it's difficult sometimes but it can work, the hardest part being the four times a year time shifts. An Aussie will swing 2 hours away in each direction with those. 16 hours will become 18 hours, then back again.

What I do is try to allocate a fixed time and stick to it each day, if that fixed time can't be done the relationship will break down quite fast as there is really so little common time. Weekends of course to have a little more time. I find it's also incredibly important to have a backup way to talk, we use an IM program on our phones to tap out messages if we are delayed or early.

Other than that, just realising that it can really put a large strain on the relationship. To be accepting of the fact this is out of your control and to communicate if you start hurting due to it.

 

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I too met someone with a big time difference from me. He's 7 hours ahead of me in the UK while I'm in Western Canada. To make it work has involved lots of late nights for him and some really early mornings for me. We usually touch base at least once or twice a day on our lunch breaks and then spend more time together on the weekend when we can both be online for longer periods of time together. We also use skype messenger throughout the day and talk that way since we aren't always logged in to sl everyday. Honestly if he were anyone else, I probably would not be putting in all this effort to get to know him, but like you I could tell from the get-go that he was someone special.

Edited by Kendraskyye

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My Sl wife and I depending on the time of year have about 5 to 6 hours between us. I handle mine with coffee and alot of late nights. Sometimes may only get afew hours, but some time is better then no time in my book. Just have to do what you can for as long as you can. There are times it sucks because I am alone alot of times and it does get very lonely, but I'll say this much. Not for once. Not a single moment have I ever regretted it because when she walks threw that door my heart ships a beat and my pixels get all warm and fuzzy inside. lol I mean she is my world. I think about her when she is gone. She is the very first thing I think about when I wake up and the very last thing I think about when I go to sleep. Why the heck she picked me I'll never know because I am a handful and need supervision half the time. lol Thing is though if you love the person you will make it work. Where there is a will there is a way. So ya I am good and 10/10 would sit around alone until she gets home saying this sucks all over again. lol ;)

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My partner is from the US and I'm in New Zealand, depending on time of the year there's either 16 or 18 hours between us. It's never really been a problem, we just make sure we make the most of the time we do get with each other. And we also communicate outside of SL via email and skype. 

All in all it's not that difficult to make relationships with big time differences work, you just have to be willing to put in the effort. Just like an relationship 

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I think I just got very lucky being nabbed by my guy on his first day in SL.  Same time zone, same city!  Those early days we were online together for too many hours and even now after 9 years you can still find us logged in doing stuff at 2 am our time.  I truly believe for those on different time zones if it's meant to be you will just find a way to make it work.  It's not necessarily about quantity of time but quality of what you do when together. :D 

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Thanks for all your thoughts everyone.  I did not even realize that there will be an 18 hour difference at some point between us, but I am not too worried! I know we will find a way to make it work. Even if its only a couple times a week, that is good for me!  I think he feels the same way.  When we miss eachother, we leave messages on line for the other one to say hello. Its been nice.

 

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An update all!  This week was to be the first week of trying things on a more scheduled meeting time. We had agreed to make a point of trying to spend a few hours together two times a week, and the rest of the time we would just not worry if one of us could not make it on, or whatever.  Well, the first of the two times a week we had planned, my bf did not show up at all, and even though he wrote me a nice message later on, there was no explanation as to why he did not show up during the time we discussed.  The second time was supposed to be tonight, and he still has yet to show up.  He writes me nice notes when he has time to get on SL but again, nothing explaining his absence or where he is right now. I do realize things come up, but I thought we made plans like this for a reason?  I have spent too much time this week waiting around for him to show up on SL.  This is not how I want to spend my SL time, or my own RL time...checking SL to see if he is there or not.  He and I are going to have to talk. It won't work if he can't pay attention to a pre-arranged plan.....I havent' seen him in a week.....That is a long time in SL time....

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I have said this before but time zones mean nothing, what matters is your RL schedule and how it impacts you time online. If you get online at the same time then great the relationship can work, even if the times on you RL clocks are different. I met the absolute perfect guy, and we both live in the same time zone, but he works nights, I work days, we get online at the same time about once every two to three weeks, end of relationship.

Edited by Talligurl
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Not seeing each other for a week is hard (I should know since I haven't seen my lover since our son was born on Sunday, and it's currently Friday :(), but this can be rectified by talking as you mention. Maybe explain to him how important it is that you see him online at least a few times a week and that things won't work for you if you can't. No point waiting around in sl for someone who won't put in the effort to make time with you a priority.

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I have had problems when it comes to trying to arrange to meet up, and so far hasn't worked, i was the one always going on at silly o clock, and him saying don't plan it, we'll see each other when we see each other, and hardly ever happened. It really affected my health in rl. So i have given up now.

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I think it's never good to stay up until silly o'clock in hope to see your significant other inworld, or to have to wait for hours and days in vain. Either both of you manage to get together regularly for some quality time (for example in the morning your time/late evening their time - or vice versa) - or the relationship isn't worth the hassle. Sorry to say that, but I go by the principle that Real Life always has absolute priority over anything else. And lack of sleep does make you ill.

Anyways, if you count D/s-relationships in: I have a few girls with 6-9 hours time difference to my own timezone (SLT+9); and yet, we find time to have an hour or two together every day. And that, even though I almost always log off around 10pm my time (13:00 SLT) to go to bed. Sometimes we see each other inworld early morning their time/afternoon my time, sometimes  late evening their time/early morning my time, sometimes both. But we always find some time so that we can see each other every day.

Edited by ThorinII
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Well i said i gave up, i did till i met the guy i am with now, I am 8hrs ahead of him, so far it works, because he isn't vague, if he says he is coming onto sl he does (a 1st for me) we do offline messages, and only get to see each other properly 2/3 times in a week, but i am the happiest i have been on sl for a long time :) I have better balance with my rl life too. So all is tickety boo, i won't lie, it is still awkward at times, as i tend to stay up too late lol, but he is worth it, found my partner in crime :D

Edited by Misty Selentiak
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And I am still with my guy too....as the starter of this post, I am happy to say its been 3 months now and we do get to see each other a few times a week. While it is not always easy, if you love somebody, you just make it work.  

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I always have this issue as I am in NZ and almost everyone I have been involved with is in the US, so can be up to almost a day behind me.

The main thing to make it work - communication.  Email, skype, kik, whatever works for you.  You can do this via phone when you are working and not able to be together inworld, and just enjoy the time when you are.

If its worth it, you make the effort.

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Since i wrote on here, we broke up a few days before we were meant to get married......we are now with other people, and i am with someone in my own timezone :D

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I work “3rd shift” in the central USA and my Partner operates on eastern Canada/US time.

Thats actually kinda similar to a US-Australia relationship as when I DJ in the mornings I catch Australia later in their evening.

I sleep about 2 hours after getting home and get up in Prime Time to be with her. I do my shopping at “24 hour” mega stores before work and my fitness center is also open 24/7 so I can go work on that “last 5 lbs” late in the evening before I go to Herd the Cats.

Yes, I and my partner and wrap our RL stuff around our SL life together. After 12+ years together here (counting our pre-crazy-stalker original avatars) - we’re kind of stuck on one another :-)

Nobody ever accused me of being normal....

giphy.gif

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