Some people say that absence makes the heart grow fonder. Others say "out of sight, out of mind." It's always possible to find an idiom to suit your needs, so many are rather contradictory. This is largely irrelevant though because all of them can be true at some point, depending on the circumstances.
It depends on the type of relationship you have as to which saying will be true in this case. Everyone of us is different, and so every possible combination of people will also be different. What works for some won't always work for another.
Take a couple who meet up often in person but are rarely in contact when they're not together. If one of them goes away for a week or two, this may throw up some interesting new feelings if the relationship is imbalanced. The partner who has remained at home may need to receive some form of contact - via email, text or phone - in order to keep that link with the other. If their partner doesn't keep in touch, resentment will build.
In this case, it will appear that the absent partner has been thinking "out of sight, out of mind", when they've probably just been concentrating on their business trip or holidaying somewhere without mobile signal. It's always best to discuss your desired level of contact before a partner goes away, so that you can both manage your expectations.
Now imagine a couple who are apart for a couple of weeks, but who are used to keeping in touch via email, text message and social media throughout the week. They tweak their behaviour to replace some of the missed face-to-face time with a bit more texting and some IM chat. Before long, the love that was a background hum turns into a loud roar as they can't wait to feel each other's touch again.
In this case, absence does make the heart grow fonder as contact is maintained, allowing both partners to express their longing for physical touch once more. They bond over their shared desire. This is how many couples make things work when they are apart for long periods of time. However, there's only so much you can do if it's an extremely long distance relationship, as most of us need that face-to-face time.
So, it depends on the strength of your relationship, communication, balanced needs/wants, length of time you are apart, whether it's possible to remain in contact... no wonder some people say that absence only makes the heart grow fonder if your relationship is 'meant to be'. Sounds a bit soppy and romantic but I have to admit I agree with them!
Lori Smith is the BitchBuzz Sex & Relationships columnist. She's been in a relationship for 13 years and has probably learnt loads of lessons over that time. If only she could remember them!
Image via What What's Flickr photostream.