For those times when your partner and you are physically separated, here are some tips for making time for you, as a couple, using the resources of the Internet:
* Set aside a regular time period, no less than half an hour, that both of you are available and undistracted. It may be early in the morning, or it might be late at night.
* Decide in advance whether you want to use instant messaging or an exchange of emails for your "conversation."
* Every day, each of you should find something online that interests you. This is your own homework. It might be a short video, an article from a web site or a cool new blog you happened to stumble across.
* Reduce distractions by turning off the TV, phone and radio. Put magazines and books out of reach.
* When your together time arrives, send your partner the address of the web item that interested each of you.
* Link to that address and watch the video, read the article or explore the blog.
* Send your initial reactions to your mate.
* Discuss for the rest of your allotted time. You'll probably find that those initial comments will lead you to some very interesting tangents.
Life is busy! It's hard to find time to focus with your partner on your relationship and shared interests. There is so much work to do and household chores. The To Do list seems endless. Sometimes our conversations with our mate amount to little more than "How was your day?"
It's even harder when you and your loved one are separated by many miles, whether on a business trip, taking care of a family member two states away or moved because of a new job in another city. Follow these recommendations, and you will have shared some truly valuable time together. Maybe it's not as good as being together physically, but you can still mature and strengthen as a couple. It's even possible that the quality of those thoughtful online exchanges will actually improve your communication during those times when you are together in the same physical location.