The latest issue of Women's Health magazine has an article about long-distance relationships featuring this interesting statistic:
$278: Average total amount long-distance couples spend a month to keep love alive
That is quite a lot of money. For the last couple of years, I have been "seeing" someone long-distance myself, and I suspect my average monthly spending might be even higher, but you know what? I have no idea how much I've spent. Yes, despite my totally anal approach to keeping financial records, I do NOT have a Quicken category called "LDR," "Sweetie-pie," "Too-Infrequent Nookie," or anything like that.
Of course it's something my honey and I have joked about-- I've spent a lot of money on travel, telephone calls, gifts, etc., and there are times when I've grumbled to myself about how much it was costing me. (We've both spent a lot of money, but I've spent more, because I make a lot more.) At one point the relationship even made me consider leaving New York, which was part of the reason I didn't buy an apartment sooner. If you add in the amount of extra money I'm probably paying because I missed the lowest interest rates and found the place I'm buying when prices hit their highest, then my long-distance costs would truly be huge. But I can't quite bring myself to try to add up the number. It just seems wrong. You have to draw a line somewhere and love is something you just can't put a price tag on.
And yet the financial aspect of this relationship can't be ignored. As with any long-distance relationship, or any relationship at all, you wonder where it's going to go and if it has a future. As discussed the other day, financial compatibility is something to consider carefully in any relationship, and in a long-distance relationship, there can be even more at stake. To be perfectly honest, lately I think I've been starting to get to the point where the honeymoon is over and I wonder if my relationship will ever really work out. But I keep having to check myself: am I considering all the various reasons it might not work out? Or am I just being cheap!?!