Bella Vendetta is a professional and lifestyle Dominatrix hailing from Western MA. Her long history with the BDSM community allows her to travel around the country working with couples from all walks of life.
In addition to being a sex worker, she is also a rock and metal journalist writing for music magazines and blogs, a personal chef, a clothing designer, and a sex educator lecturing at colleges and universities.
Bella currently lives in the mountains with two chihuahuas and her boyfriend, who used to live far away but she missed him too much -- now they keep a small farm, where no one gets cell reception.
My longest relationship . . . My marriage . . . was mostly all long distance. It started with us living almost 7 hours apart and visiting when we could, we lived together for a short time and then he ended up going to prison for 3.5 years. We stayed together and believe Me, we developed lots of strange ways to keep in touch and try to keep our intimacy.
After My marriage dissolved, the next person I became interested in happened to live all the way across the country. For Me, the distance wasn't really an issue, and I was happy with whatever time we got together and I tried to invent all sorts of cute ways for us to feel close. In the end, they thought the distance was too much. I was hurt and confused because no amount of distance -- not even an ocean -- can keep Me from someone I have a genuine connection with.
Not everyone can handle long distance, you have to be incredibly strong, really solid, very secure, and you have to WORK on your communication every single day.
In My current relationship, we moved in together soon after we first started dating, and were together pretty much all the time -- the exact opposite of anything I've experienced.
Here are My tips for folks in long distance relationships:
1: Write Letters
It might be cheesy sounding, but it's a lost art. When is the last time you actually GOT a hand written letter in the mail? Not just a postcard with a short note, but a love letter. It can take so many different turns as well: you can send casual notes about what you did that day and what your plans are for the next; they can be romantic musings about things and places you want to do and go together when you finally can be with one another; poems you write for each other; stories you each continue on and send back and forth.
Texting each other is one thing, but writing letters takes connection to a much more personal level. You have to go out of your way to send a letter, take time out of your day to sit down and write. It really shows your lover that you are thinking of them and feeling connected with them even when they aren't physically with you. It's also a good chance to do something nice, like spray your favorite perfume or cologne or deodorant onto the letter. When you read a letter from someone you love you can see their hand writing, smell their scent, feel the paper they've chosen. When writing a naughty letter I've often gone so far as to wipe the paper onto My genitals or armpits so My lover can be reminded of what My most intimate parts smell like. I also like doing things like tracing My feet, hands, breasts, etc. to remind My sweetie about the particulars of My body. There's all sorts of things you can add besides a letter too! Which brings Me to My next point:
2: Care packages
Yes, kind of like those things you got in camp or at college from your family. The ones that are the best always seem to come at JUST the right time and remind you of your loved ones in a way that makes your heart ache deliciously. As an adult, making care packages for your lover can be even more fun! After a while I found Myself looking for things on My travels that I might be able to include in the next care package. Candies from your favorite shop you always wished your lover could try, trinkets and tokens from your travels, brochures and clippings from places you want to go together or have gone. And if you're feeling daring of course, you can always send your underwear!
3: Read Books Together
Books are something you can add to you care packages. When you read a book you know your lover will love, you can send it to them and later you can each compare notes and talk about it. You might even underline parts or make border notations of the parts you think your sweetie will enjoy.
Another thing I really think is a lost art is reading aloud. After traditional school, most of us don't get a chance to read lout loud or to be read to. I personally find it very soothing. Picking a book together that you both want to read, and taking turns reading chapters to each other can be very romantic. You can read over the phone, over Skype, or even make recordings of yourself reading and send them to your lover in your awesome sexy care package you've been putting together! Hearing your voice while you are away is a great way to soothe them when they miss you so much. It can almost be like that person is right there in the room with you.
This can be really, really helpful for people who have a loved one in prison, overseas, or in a situation where they will be separated with sporadic or no contact. In one of your letters you two come up with a pre-determined time and date. Make it a week or more in advance so you have plenty of time to daydream about it and feel excited about it. On the agreed upon time and date you both sit where you can be alone and focus and for ONE HOUR you agree to meditate upon each other. Call it your imaginary date. Clear your mind of all things but your partner. Then you know that on August 25th 2015 at exactly 9 pm your partner was thinking about . . . fill in the blank here. Taking you on a trip to Disney Land, working the farm together, building a house together, daydream about surfing in Hawaii . . . or you know, since it's in your mind you can meditate on the two of you flying together, or being superheroes together.
You can use your hour-long play date together in a more intimate way and agree that you will both masturbate thinking about the other one at a specific time. These kind of sexual meditations and “dates” can make real life sex with your partner very intense. You've been meditating SO HARD about all the things you want to do to them, and you'll have a lot of time to make up for when you finally reunite.
If you have been having problems in your relationship, you can agree to take that time, think about nothing else, and try to come up with a solution. Maybe you both can write down what you came up with and send them in those awesome care packages I've been telling you about. Or, you can swap ideas about how to approach problems.
No matter what you decide to focus on, thinking of someone in this big wide world of ours that is so chaotic and KNOWING that at that moment they are also thinking of you can be a very comforting feeling.
5: Maximize your time together
If you go for long periods of time without seeing each other, it can be really easy to just spend your whole time catching up, or in bed, or on the couch just staring at each other, or holding each other because you are so glad to finally be in the presence of the person you love. But don't get caught up! If this is someone you really want a healthy and well rounded relationship with, don't forget to do those little things. Take them to that restaurant you've been longing to show them. Have them meet your friends who have all been asking who this person is who never seems to be around. Show them the parts of your life they don't get to see so they can truly appreciate the time you take to devote to them and only them. It's a delicate balance though, because you have to remember to:
6: Take it easy with each other
I know I just said to not stay in the house staring into each others eyes for too long and to get out there and do some things. But on the other hand, don't try to do ALL the things! Take a break together: order Chinese food, watch Netflix, cuddle on the couch, and just enjoy being together. Try to plan ONE day where you don't have to rush to birthday parties or parks or anything else and just stay in. TURN OFF YOUR PHONES! (If you feasibly can without like, getting fired or putting anyone's life in danger). Make out like teenagers.
The BEST PART about long distance relationship is that you don't ever really get a chance to get sick of the person. You always miss them, you always want to be around them and whenever you get it it's never enough. Hold that person long enough so when they miss you they can really remember what it feels like to be held by you.
In the meantime:
7: Use the Internets
Duh, I didn't even wanna have to say it,"TEXT!" It's 2015. Text your partner, send them cute pictures of what you're doing and what shoes your wearing and tell jokes and for Christ's sake . . . don't make them wait hours and hours and days and weeks for a response! When someone you love is far away from you your mind can go to some weird places, so nip that stuff right in the bud before it becomes an issue. Just COMMUNICATE through any means necessary.
Email each other! Skype with each other, ooVoo or FaceTime or whatever it is kids are doing these days. Find the one y'all like best and do that! Stay connected to each other, take advantage of the fact that it's 2015 and you can send your partner a Snapchat that only they can see, ya know?