Love at a distance

By Faire Davidson and Candice Navi

When Nora Rothman ’09 joined Chamber Singers as a sophomore, Sam Usher ’08 intended to make their platonic friendship something more.

“We were friendly first, although Sam always had romantic intentions,” Rothman said. “I was not big on relationships—my record long was five days—so when he asked me out in November, I was tentative.”

Usher now attends Brown University. Being so far apart has allowed each of them to grow as separate people, but at the same time it has altered their relationship to some degree.

“It is hard to watch someone you’re so close to grow and change at a distance. You don’t really get to feel involved in their life,” Rothman said.

The change in their relationship has been a tough lesson for Rothman to accept, but has also allowed her to be an “independent adult who is in a relationship.”

“It is easy to let your life pass you by while you are waiting for him to come home. You have to take a step back and let your relationship change, even though it is scary,” Rothman said.

Rothman and Usher make up for the distance by video chatting regularly, and are physically together “at best once a month,” Rothman said. Since they are so far away from each other, the success of Rothman and Usher’s relationship can be credited to trust and communication.

“We had to trust each other entirely,” Rothman said. “There could be no doubts about faithfulness or honesty. We also had to make sure we were tuned in to each other’s moods and mindsets in order to feel connected over such a distance.” Rothman and Usher have now been dating for two and a half years.

Like Rothman, Genevieve Dash ’09 wasn’t looking for a long term relationship when she went on a date with Peter Bloomberg, a current junior at the Crossroads School.

Dash had just ended a six month relationship and, at first, thought her relationship with Bloomberg was a rebound. They have now been dating for almost three years.

Both being “incredibly awkward” and not having many mutual friends, at first there wasn’t a lot to talk about, Dash said. They ended up talking about their respective schools on the first few dates.

“While we do love spending time with each other, we both enjoy having our own friends and independent existences,” Dash said.

Dash credits part of her relationships success on the fact that neither she nor Bloomberg drink or do drugs.

“I think that has really kept the trust intact; no inebriated ‘bad choices,’” Dash said.

Next fall, Rothman will be reunited with Usher because they will both be attending Brown University, though his attendance did not influence her decision.

Rothman is thankful that their relationship can return to a more normal state in the upcoming school year.

“Sam and I are both so much stronger than we were in August,” Rothman said. “Once we are together again, our relationship will be stronger, too.”

The hardest part about maintaining their close relationship from a distance was not the loss of her boyfriend, but mostly Rothman’s closest friend.

“Sam is my best friend,” Rothman said. “When he went away, I wasn’t only losing my boyfriend, I was losing my best friend.”

Bryce Tobias ’10 has been dating Cami Winding, a junior who attends Marymount, for the past two years. The story of how they met is certainly a complicated one, but one which ended well for both of them.

Tobias met Winding through Caity Croft ’10 and Meg Norton ’10 since they attended St. Matthew’s elementary school together.

Tobias did not ask Winding for her number the first time they met and ended up asking Croft for her number instead.

They met again after a week of texting each other by hanging out with their common friends, Croft, James McNamara ’10 and Norton.

“When they ran across San Vicente to Blockbuster, we just kept walking down the street and I just asked her if she wanted to be my girlfriend,” Tobias said.

The negative and positive parts of going to separate schools are not very different for Tobias, but he appreciates the amount of distance it allows them to have in their relationship.

“The pros of having an out of school girlfriend is that you do not get sick of seeing each other everyday and when we do see each other it is really great and special,” Tobias said. “The con is that you do not get to see each other every day.”

Since they do not see each other at school, they talk on the phone or video chat every night. They also text one another often and are together all weekend, usually spending the whole day together, Tobias said.

Dash and Bloomberg are also unable to see each other during the week because of school work but see each other almost every day of the weekends.

“It took longer for us to be totally, 100 percent comfortable with each other,” Dash said. “Of course not seeing each other every day inhibited getting to know each other quickly, but it was not detrimental to our relationship in the least.”