How We Handle Long Distance

I debated whether or not I should write this. I then debated whether or not I should publish it. But this site is about me and my life, and since many of you are curious as to how Tor and I manage certain things of our marriage, I felt it wasn’t too off-topic to share. As I write this post, my husband Tor is en route to Ireland to film his latest project (I will let him announce what it is). If I told you that I handle all of his travels abroad well, I’d be lying. In this extremely personal post, I am sharing how we handle long distance.

Tor and I have had to deal with long distance during our entire relationship together, which will be 8 years this upcoming July. Tor and I understand that we don’t have an ordinary relationship or life. We aren’t naive – we know how lucky we are to be able to spend as much time together as we do and that we have careers that take us all over the globe by each other’s side. But that doesn’t mean it’s always easy. There are some projects that take him abroad for six months, like in 2016 where he had to relocate to Spain just one week after our wedding. There are other projects that take him abroad for 3 years, like in 2013 when he booked Reign and we relocated to Toronto. I usually get to go with him, but other times I am needed at home in LA and cannot always make the journey the entire time.

The best way on how we handle long distance is communication. Since we first met in person in July 2010 (see the story on how we met and our first date here), there has never been a day that goes by where we do not speak. That’s 2777 days of constant communication. Whether it be via text or FaceTime or Skype, we are always talking to each other. When Tor is abroad in Europe, he is usually 8 or 9 hours ahead, so I look forward to waking up in the morning to at least 5-10 messages from him when he started his day. I even change my schedule back home in LA to be even earlier than usual so I can try to be awake when Tor is as much as possible. It may seem drastic to some, but it’s how I handle long distance the best.

Communication has always been our biggest method in keeping the love alive while apart. At the same time, we have seen over the last 8 years that time apart is very healthy. Tor and I are practically attached at the hip most days, especially when we are at home. One reason why that is is because we never know when we will have to be separated again, as projects for Tor can and usually come up last minute (see my post on life as an actor’s wife here). This new project he is working on came up just two weeks ago. Before then, we had no idea we would be spending the month of March back in Europe, especially since we just returned from Finland. We don’t have 9-5 jobs (though we have held them in the past), so we wake up beside each other, tackle our days beside each other, and go to bed beside each other. While this seems like champagne problems to some, it makes the first few days of being apart a bit difficult.

But as I said earlier, being apart is healthy because we are together so often. After the first few days of adjusting to not being by each other’s side, we are able to carry on with life as normal. I keep myself busy with work at home and spend a lot of time with my friends, and he keeps himself busy with filming and hanging with our many friends abroad. The best part about being separated for a time? That same exact butterfly feeling I had on the night we met nearly 8 years ago comes fluttering back every moment I see him again. I won’t see Tor again until March 26, but I am looking forward to that giddy butterfly feeling on that day.

I am so proud of my husband. He is talented, handsome, and so incredibly kind and caring. What most people don’t know is he essentially has two jobs. First and foremost, he is an actor. It’s what he has done since he was a child and what he is most passionate about. He’s been a part of so many fun television shows and movies. Every time I watch him on screen, I’m even prouder than I already am. Secondly, he is my partner and photographer for this site. I am beyond lucky I have a man like Tor who encourages me and pushes me to follow my passions and provides unconditional support. He selflessly helps me with The A List even when his own schedule is full, and for that I will always grateful. All these things make being away from him harder, but it makes for our reunions to be even happier and more exciting.

Are you in a long distance relationship or marriage? If so, what helps you cope with the distance?

Photos by Carter Fish.

 

What I Wore In This Post

Urbancode London faux fur coat (similar here and here), Sezané sweater (similar here and here), Current Elliott pants (similar less expensive ones here), Stuart Weitzman boots, Chanel bag (similar here and here), White beret, Leather gloves

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20 Comments

  1. Praveena.T

    Aww.. I love your love story and how you guys handle your relationship and marriage.. I was hoping one day , I can find love like you guys in arrange marriage..( love marriage is frown upon in my culture).. I always wish have love like you guys once in lifetime….

    Posted 3.8.18 Reply
  2. Hi Alyssa,

    Such a beautiful and emotional post! you are a brilliant writer you truly truly are. Will you be coming to Ireland and staying for a while as your husband films his new project or travelling back and forth? Good luck to Torrance for the new project!

    Posted 3.8.18 Reply
  3. Michelle B

    You are so incredibly inspiring and reading your posts about being married to an actor have really helped me. My boyfriend is an actor, and there are some aspects of the job that I have found difficult (love scenes, potential long distance). But communicating my fears with him have helped a lot and reading how you feel and deal have also helped with my perspective. While he isn’t traveling the world like Torrance (yet), I know there is a huge possibility of that happening, and you have made me realize that I will be able to deal with it if and when that happens. Thank you!

    Posted 3.8.18 Reply
  4. Mansi

    It’s actually sad that today, when communication is so easy with the advent of internet, relationships lack communication (often inspite of being in the same city). It’s amazing how you both manage. Kudos to you both! Really.

    Posted 3.8.18 Reply
  5. My favorite couple in the world. You guys are so inspirational ❤️

    Posted 3.8.18 Reply
  6. Jessica

    Alyssa,
    I can relate to this! My boyfriend and I have been together for almost 6 years! Since the end of sophomore year of HS and now we’re about to graduate college. We are long distance so we don’t get to see each other often with our conflicting schedules, however, as the years gone by I’ve learned to not be so sad every time I see a couple holding hands or just having a good time at lunch with each other around campus (since I don’t have him during weekdays!). We make sure to update each other throughout the day as much as possible, send photos of what’s happening through snapchat, and call each other (usually at bedtime) most days. Also, making each other a priority when scheduling has helped! We decided that every other weekend works best for us, which I know I’m lucky we are able to make that work. What you said about the butterflies returning is so true though! When I get to see him again, I get SO excited, which I don’t know would be the case if we went to the same college. Perhaps I would take him for granted! O.O

    Posted 3.8.18 Reply
  7. Laura Ruiz

    My husband and I spent 2.5 years apart when we were dating. We’ve been married now for 5 years and my husband has gone back to school to get his MBA. There are 2 days a week where I don’t see him or maybe see him for an hour at most. Other days he is busy studying, even on the weekends. I try to make the most of my time away from him by hanging out with friends or improving our home. The biggest thing that helps up is understanding. I don’t nag him or tell him how much I miss him all the time. Instead, I tell him how proud of him I am and try to do things to make his life easier so he can focus on school. I know he doesn’t want to be away from me but he’s putting the work in to make our life better, not just his.

    Posted 3.8.18 Reply
  8. Kelly

    My boyfriend and I will be together 6 years in April and since graduating high school it has been long distance for almost 4 years. Typically I always sleep in old T-shirt’s of his with a spray of his cologne so I can sleep peacefully (next to my cuddling cats of course). Otherwise we talk everyday and sometimes send letters because they are sweet.

    Posted 3.8.18 Reply
    • The A List

      Aww that’s so sweet! Before this trip, Tor did the same as your boyfriend by leaving out one of his t-shirts that was covered in his scent. I sleep with it beside me each night (although my cat Dany likes to sleep on top of it haha).

      Posted 3.12.18 Reply
  9. I love this so much! Your husband is incredibly talented since I saw him on Reign! ♥️ You two seem so grounded and genuine. Please keep the personal posts coming.

    Pearl
    http://pearlmargaret.com

    Posted 3.8.18 Reply
  10. Olivia Brannan

    You have a beautiful marriage and I believe you to be incredibly lucky in love!! What an illustrious life you and Torrance have built together. I understand that long distance may be challenging and difficult at times. My boyfriend and I are long distance at the moment due to him being in the military (Army) and me being in my 3rd year of college with 3 years left. Right now I have absolutely zero way of communicating with my love other than by letters once a week, for the next 10 weeks. Distance makes the heart grow fonder, they say. I know I get the same butterfly feeling every single time I get to see him as well, and I long for the moments I get to be in his presence or even simply hear his voice. This was a lovely post that I thouroughly adored reading and relating to. Thank you for sharing such a significant personal affair of your private life.

    Posted 3.8.18 Reply
    • The A List

      I commend your strength in handling long distance with your love. I know it cannot be easy for you with him in the military, but it’s true when they say love conquers all. And I am excited for you to have that butterfly feeling in 10 weeks when you see him again. I thank your boyfriend for his service!

      Posted 3.8.18 Reply
  11. Kristine

    It is always interesting to read about your life 😊 I was in a long distance relationship for years. I did communicate daily using msn messenger. One thing I didn’t do that you do is to make enough trips to the other country.

    Posted 3.9.18 Reply
    • The A List

      Hi Kristine! I do admit that we are rather lucky and fortunate that I am able to travel so often to join my husband. We know not many couples have that option. But I am glad to hear you agree that constant communication is helpful 🙂

      Posted 3.12.18 Reply
  12. Brittany

    Long distance relationships are certainly their own special kind of adventure, but can be an opportunity to strengthen your relationship. Likewise, I agree, communication is key. As I too am in a long distance relationship, my boyfriend and I are both in the military and have been stationed apart for 3 years and spent a deployment apart. It is always hard being apart and especially since we share a child together, but I have found that our time spent together is treasured greatly. The little things that would usually spark an argument in most couples doesn’t seem as important, because we want the time we have together to be stress free. Not to say that disagreements don’t happen, but we tend to handle them more maturely. I am also pleased with great happiness that I have recently been stationed much closer to him here in California. A couple hours away is a lot better than 3,000 miles, but even now we don’t live together and that is why communication is now and will always be important. Every new day we send a good morning text followed by many more throughout the day and of course a goodnight text. I have found that staying busy and doing things I like also helps keep me distracted when we’re apart. I think your post about how you handle long distance is very nice to read, as well as inspiring. To see how others handle their long distance relationships with love, respect, and maturity is somehow comforting and hopeful. And on top of it all so stylish as well. So thank you for sharing.

    Posted 3.9.18 Reply
    • The A List

      Hello Brittany! I thank you both for your service. I know it isn’t easy for either of you to be apart, especially with a little one. Love can overcome all kinds of obstacles, even distance. I admire both of your strengths and hope you will be together again very very soon!

      Posted 3.12.18 Reply
  13. Margaret

    Alyssa,
    That is such a great post and I love the story of how you and Tor met. That is wild!
    Best of luck you and your life together. I really enjoy watching Tornob screen and looking forward to his next project. ( still upset that Still Star- Crossed was cancelled!)
    Margaret in NYC

    Posted 3.11.18 Reply
    • The A List

      Aww thank you so much!

      Posted 3.12.18 Reply
  14. You two are an ideal couple. I know you will be together forever! I really really miss REIGN and Tor as Bash will always be my fave role for him. He is just so cute. Congratulations coming up for anniversary number 2!!!

    Posted 3.16.18 Reply
  15. I am so glad you are able to find what exactly keeps your relationship going while either of you are abroad! Communication is key wheather you are apart or together. I love that you posted something personal. I look forward to your travel posts, but now I look forward to something about you as well. 🙂

    Vanessa
    http://www.lifesamazingadventures.com

    Posted 3.19.18 Reply