It’s your last day together and everything feels like you’re counting down to those last few moments before everything about what made this trip wonderful ends.

Everything becomes the last time. The last kiss, the last hug, and the last time you hold hands. It can be a really sad and emotionally draining moment for the both of you. As you continue to meet and up until the time when you can be together permanently, you will say many goodbyes.

Most couples in long distance relationships say that it never gets easier to say goodbye. Some even say it feels like it gets harder. Regardless, saying goodbye is something we sometimes all wish we would never have to do.

What can you do to make saying goodbye easier? Here are a few tips that might make all the difference.

Plan for your next trip.

Before you leave, if possible, arrange for the next time you will both meet-up. Knowing that your separation is not open ended and having a date to look forward can be like a little glimmer of hope. You’ll have something better to focus on. Instead of thinking only about the fact that you’re leaving, you can think positively as you start to countdown to the next time you will both be together.

Contact your loved one as soon as you can after you leave.

Call them on the phone, text them, email them or have a video chat the minute you both get home. Getting in contact with the person you love soon after you’ve left them will solidify the relationship in your own mind and will put your loved one’s mind at ease knowing that you care about them and most importantly -that you are safe.

Say everything.

Don’t leave things unsaid. Everything is better when you say it face to face. Don’t be afraid to tell them your feelings before you leave. If you love them or will miss them, tell them! Never leave your loved one while in the middle of an unresolved fight or argument. Leaving in this way will cause you both a lot of pain and regret.

It’s okay to cry.

Imagine how odd it would be if both of you were blank faced and emotionless during your goodbyes. It’s normal to be sad when you leave someone you care about. Don’t bottle up your feelings. Remember that it’s okay to cry. Crying relieves you of those powerful emotions and shows the other person that you truly care for them and regret that you have to leave.

Make your final moments worth remembering.

Leave on a happy note. Tell each other how you feel, how happy the trip made you and anything else you need to say. Exchange gifts on the last day that neither of you can open until you’re apart. A CD of happy songs that remind you of him. A box of small items to remind her of you. A journal you wrote in describing how you felt on every day of your visit. A scrapbook of photos you took while together. Things like these will make your departure a sweet one because you’ll have happy things to look at and remember. There may still be some tears, but at least they’ll be happy ones.

Stay Active

Make sure you don’t start living the life of a hermit when you return home. It can be a bit of a shock to return home after having such a wonderful time together. You may be inclined to mourn or lock yourself away because of the toll saying goodbye may have taken on you. At this point it’s important for you to stay active. Dwelling on your sadness is the worst possible thing you can do. Don’t stop your life. The sadness you feel will fade much faster if you stay active with friends, family or the things you love.

Everything will be okay.

Sometimes staying active just doesn’t cut it. Sometimes you need to change your mental perspective on your situation. Instead of thinking of your separation as a permanent “goodbye,” try to think of it as though you both said “See you again soon.” As much as it hurts to not have the person you love with you, remember that you were already separated before this and you both handled it fine. You were strong enough to make it this long apart and you are still strong enough to deal with the same separation now.

Remember how fortunate you are.

Sometimes we focus on what we don’t have and don’t pay attention to beautiful things we do have. Stop and reflect on how great your relationship is and never let the fact that you are separated cloud your view of what’s really important.