Long-distance love

Senior puts love and time on the line


Photo contributed by Tha Mawi

Senior Van Duh and his girlfriend Tha Mawi are on their first official date. They watched movies and ate food all day.

College Freshman Tha Mawi didn’t believe she’d end up dating her guy best friend, senior Van Duh Lian, but after talking with him for three months, she was the one to confess her feelings first. 

“We got along together really well from the beginning,” Lian said. “I felt like we were meant to be.”

Lian and Mawi met through a group of friends around September 2019 and had thus started to converse with each other, resulting in dating.

Lian was first to catch feelings and was also confident that he would end up with her, and Mawi noticed the signs. 

They would often call each other and they kept in contact constantly, because of the long-distance in their relationship.

Best friends to lovers, they had kept a low profile relationship before deciding to tell their friends and family. They were met with a lot of positive feedback, but there were a few doubts from third parties. Parents were hesitant about the other individual. 

Regardless, Lian and Mawi both had faith and confidence in each other. 

Sophomore Hannah Matthews is friends with Lian and Mawi and believes that they are suited for each other.

“They’re kind of like puzzle pieces,” Matthews said. “In the way that they fit each other well.”

Traveling to North Carolina by plane, Lian finally met up with Mawi for the first time. Despite it being the first time, Mawi says that she did not have nervous jitters, which was not the case for Lian.

“When we met with each other, I literally did not touch my phone,” Mawi said. “I was just in the moment.”

On July 17, 2020, the day Lian and Mawi met up together, they started to officially date. They hadn’t dated beforehand, because they wanted to meet face to face. Their first date was a picnic.

Lian was very open-minded about Mawi’s likes and dislikes, and since she did not like PDA, they held pinkies when out in public.

Their first date also involved Mawi’s brother following them around, which made it awkward, she says.

Both agree not being able to physically hug is a downside of this distant relationship, and it is important to keep in touch along with having trust in one another.

“Trust is the most important thing that you guys can have,”  Lian said. “Since you guys don’t see each other person to person.”

Mawi is also very academically driven and helps Lian with his schoolwork and reminds him to do it. They say they are each other’s motivation. 

In the future, they will continue to meet up. Mawi is also planning to move to Indiana after college, and start her career.

“She helps me for the good,” Lian said.