There are long-distance relationships, and then there’s Heather Perriam and her husband Steve.
The couple live on opposite sides of the world and have only seen each other in the flesh four times since getting married.
Heather lives in Seattle, Washington, while her husband Steve, 52, lives in Paignton, Devon, a staggering 4,746 miles away.
"We've always been long distance," said Heather, a senior trainer for T-Mobile.
"It's hard because there are times where you really want support and it's frustrating because if something happens on his side before I wake up or on my side after he goes to bed, we can't really talk to each other about it until the next day."
The couple met in 2012 while playing an online game, initially establishing a friendship. While they were both married at the time Heather stresses that they weren’t romantically involved until after they had divorced their previous partners.
She says it was supporting each other through their divorces that brought them together.
After half a dozen transatlantic visits, the couple married in Washington in December 2019.
While the Covid-19 pandemic has prevented them from meeting more than a handful of times since the wedding Heather says: "I feel like we see each other all the time because we are constantly video chatting."
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They have an eight-hour time difference and plan their days around speaking with each other.
"I get up pretty early and we video chat for like an hour," Heather said.
"He goes and finishes his day and I start mine.
"My lunch hour is usually a phone call with him before he goes to bed. He goes to bed about 1 p.m. my time and then I’m on my own."
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But Heather said the distance brings plenty of positives to their relationship.
"The best is that because we’re separated, our time is so valuable and all we do is talk and talk and talk, so we really know each other in and out," she said.
Heather’s advice to anyone dealing with a long-distance relationship is to remember "communication is the key".
However Heather does plan to move to the UK in the near future.
But now, Heather is close to being able to move to England to live with Steve, a program manager for a government agency.
She said: "I have two boys that are now grown and he has a son that's 13, so it would have been really disruptive previously for one of us to move.
"I actually just got my spousal visa approved and that process took a lot longer because of Covid."
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