One of the best things about long distance is that it has a nice way of speeding up the inevitable. Economist Tim Harford sometimes gives dating advice. He recently stopped by NPR's Planet Money podcast to answer questions from the lovelorn. Harford made the point that many people in relationships don't correctly perceive the "sunk cost." By this, Harford means that we often consider the good times in the past as having a factor on our present relationship. They don't. You can't gain anything from the good times you already had, the love you no longer feel, or the lost intimacy that is slipping farther and farther into the past. When you live in the same city, have the same friends, or share the same apartment, reminders of the past are all around you. Breaking up doesn't just mean ending a relationship; it often means fundamentally altering your way of life. Many long distance relationships that end are relationships that were held together by a combination of guilt and comfort, despite an absence of love. Sometimes distance is just what you need to gain some perspective and get out of a dying relationship.