How sex doesn't work in a long-distance relationship

LONG-DISTANCE relationship? You can’t have sex if you’re not in the same place. Shag someone local. 

But if you insist on trying to make the impossible possible, there are as many options for making sex not really work for anyone as if you shared a bed. Try kidding yourself with all this crap, even though long-distance loving is like a vegan egg: no matter how much you want it to work, without major technological advances you’re setting yourself up for failure.

Zoom it

Being in a long-distance relationship means you can spend steamy evenings – or 2pm on a Wednesday, depending on the time difference – telling a laptop the kinky shit you’d love to do it, as you shift the camera between your face, boobs and fanny. Tip: turn off the pinned window.

If you ever get over feeling a complete tit and manage to enjoy a moment of sexual abandon, enjoy the aftermath: always wondering if some geek hacked in and is laughing at your cum face.

Sext it

How better to keep things spicy than naughty texts from someone who won’t be there to make it happen? LIke writing up minutes for a meeting nobody will action, there’s nothing that reminds you how lonely you are like a catalogue of sex acts you can’t actually do.

If you were physically with your boyfriend, you’d never agree to half the ambitious dildo-up-the-ass-based options you’re casually giving a thumbs up on WhatsApp: what really unleashes your inner beast is the safe knowledge you won’t actually have to see anything through. You minx.

Don’t have it

In many circumstances, long-distance is a plus. Never has there been a more legitimate excuse for keeping your dick dry than being oceans apart. Or even just the train journey from Pangbourne to Ludlow: three changes including Wales? That’s not sexy.

With no way to have sex and no need to examine the reasons, you’ve got a free pass to live your life as a singleton and prolific masturbator, sidestepping the ballache of every prick trying to set you up with their ugly friends.

Have it with others

If you can’t be with the one you love, fuck around. If your girlfriend’s long-distance shagging her is impossible, but shagging other girls is infinitely practical. You’ll never get caught and lying’s easy on camera, especially if you turn it off. Fancy your side of the relationship being open? Bash off an email and get transferred to the Dortmund office.

Lie about it

Whatever you do it’s vital to convince yourself everything’s fine, or what kind of farce is this relationship? Want to prove your shitty friends right when they warned you a Hong Kong-Lisbon time difference would shatter true love? Fuck no. Embrace denial. Anything rather than admit you’re permanently horny.

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Let's move to an extremely wealthy left-wing utopia by the sea! This week: Brighton

What’s it about?

A dilapidated seaside resort on England’s south coast which appeared in Quadrophenia and hasn’t done anything notable since, Brighton is the unofficial gay capital of the UK and within commuting distance of London.

That means cool Londoners can pop down for the weekend, have a hedonistic night out at the Queen’s Arms, ignore the city’s homeless problem, then shuttle back home to tell all their friends about their bohemian weekend.

If you’re ready for a social life containing more failed aspiring DJs than Ibiza in 2002, this is the city for you. Marvel at your lowly place on the food chain as seagulls swoop down on your fish and chips to assert their dominance.

You’ll need a full-time corporate job and five quirky side-hustles to fit in and afford the tiniest of bedsits the city has to offer, so you might as well move to West Worthing, like four out of five supposed Brighton residents.

Any good points?

Brighton is famous for its progressive outlook as well as being home to the only Green Party MP, Caroline Lucas. This sounds wonderful in theory, but it does mean that if you’ve ever eaten a bacon sandwich or called the police after a burglary you’ll be regarded as a fascist by the mysteriously wealthy locals.

Culturally there’s always something to do in Brighton. Want to see comedians hone their act before realising they can’t afford to take their one-person show about their privileged upbringing to Edinburgh? Komedia and the city’s comedy festival are bound to pique your interest.

And no article about Brighton would be complete without mentioning that it has a pier you can walk onto, piss away the best part of 30 quid with nothing to show for it, then walk off again. Exhilarating. There’s another pier, but it’s a ghost.

Wonderful landscape?

Brighton’s biggest selling point is its beach, which combines pebbles you wade through with filthy, ice-cold water best enjoyed from a distance. You’re never alone on it, not even at 4am, so you’ll never feel relaxed or safe.

The desolate view of the English Channel can also be relished from the i360 observation tower, universally beloved by residents due to its beautiful appearance and affordable tickets. What a thrill to see uninspired street art from a higher elevation for £15 for 20 minutes.

There’s also Brighton Pavilion, a culturally-appropriative palace built for Prince George from Blackadder the Third, and the famous Sussex Downs. They’re gentle, unexciting hills for the elderly.

Hang out at?

The Lanes are a popular shopping destination for locals and tourists alike. Here you’ll be able to pick up a second-hand flannel shirt for the bargain price of £30, browse but never buy vintage tat from Snooper’s Paradise, and if you’re lucky you might be able to find a Los Pollos T-shirt in one of the many hip clothes shops. Don’t hold your breath though, these are extremely rare.

If you’re a cooler-than-thou hipster, be sure to plug your laptop in at one of Brighton’s many happening coffee shops before longboarding your way to the Green Door Store to watch a band you will immediately disown as sell-outs if they get played on 6Music. Eat like a proper Brightonian at vegan buffet Foodilic, chewing chunks of cold butternut squash in a cramped room while onlookers glower at you through the window, waiting their turn.

Where to buy?

Brighton is overflowing with spacious, multi-bedroom houses that are well within your budget if you’re one of the many vloggers who have followed Zoella by moving here and ruining it. For normal people living on regular salaries, your options are the pavement or a houseshare with a dozen creative types, and even then cramped bedrooms in Kemptown are so in-demand you’ll be on a waiting list for years.

If you want to say you live in Brighton while not actually living in Brighton you could always move to nearby Hove. This upmarket area has none of Brighton’s charm but the houses are just as expensive. Alternatively, just move to Worthing and lie when you pop in to Alcotraz at the weekend.

From the streets:

Ryan Whittaker, 28, said: “Fatboy Slim lives here. That’s not an endorsement, it’s a warning. Run.”

Steve Malley, aged 49, said: “Ah, the sea. Everyone goes in it once.”