RelationshipsHow to Go on Vacation Together Without Breaking Up
Salient tips for avoiding murder charges and more.
Vacation may have been all the Go-Gos ever wanted, but for the rest of us, it's little more than a time-sucking money pit that keeps us from the things we're trying to accomplish in the long-term, like dying at our desks. Research indicates that more than half of Americans don't take their paid vacation days, and when we do, we end up in some horrible location, knee deep in strangers' bodily fluids, not unlike the cleanup crew at a Justin Bieber concert. Are romantic vacations little more than a way to lure your significant other to the edge of a cliff in a country that won't extradite felons, or worse, a day at Madame Tussauds? What is the key to spending a vacation together without breaking up?
Consider your financial constraints: For those of us dating sheiks, Miranda Kerr, or the version of Leonardo DiCaprio that vapes in a pageboy cap, it's fine to forget your wallet when you hit up Eleven Madison Park for dinner. However, for the idiots among us who do things like "go to work," "pay rent," or "have a secret family," money is a pressing concern, particularly en vacances. Make sure you're on the same page about the type of activities you want to be doing and how much you're willing to spend on them. Nothing is more embarrassing than finding yourself on a werewolf safari with the North Korean royal family only to discover that somebody's too cheap to spring for silver bullets.
Give yourself some alone time: Vacations are all about spending time together, right? WRONG. They're all about deciding after a few day of non-stop interaction whether you still care enough about your significant other to not leave them in an Eastern European sewer inhabited by krokodil addicts. Think about this: There are few times, even in the most co-dependent, marginally employed couple's lives, when they actually spend 24 hours a day together, except on vacation. Over the days, weeks, or months you spend on vacation, the pressure of feeling obligated to sleep, eat, shower, and edify yourself in the company of someone who forced you to watch 27 Dresses with them on the plane can quickly become exhausting. To sidestep this landmine, make sure to enjoy plenty of time to yourself, whether that just means going shopping alone, getting some time to take a solo run, or simply allowing yourself to get taken, hoping to god your father has acquired a very particular set of skills.
Don't pressure yourself to have sex: If you calculate backwards 40 weeks from your birthdate, chances are, your parents were having vacation sex. Forming beloved memories of vacation conceptions you later recount to your horrified children is just one of the reasons we were given genitalia to begin with. (The other being Puppetry of the Penis.) It's why Ron Howard insisted on giving his daughters middle names like Hilton Garden Inn and Outback Steakhouse Near Niagara Falls. However, this doesn't mean that you should push yourself to conjure your inner sex-Olympian just because you have a layover in Ann Arbor for the night. The pressure to have mind-blowing sex every night of your vacation can make what's supposed to be a beautiful, high-intensity game of wits in which there can only be one victor turn into something dull and monotonous. Let the inclination to bone come to you naturally, after candlelit dinners, walks along the Seine, or those Czech warehouse parties that make you sign a waiver before you put on a mask.
Separate blankets: Depending on where you're traveling in the world, your bed can either be a goose down cloud that keeps you cozy and comfortable as you have that recurring sex nightmare about Jamie Foxx, or you can be left bed bug-bitten and exhausted on a lumpy mattress stuffed with the limbs of the guests who preceded you. While it's virtually impossible to tell which will be your fate before booking, you can do your best to keep the peace by giving yourself some unstealable bedding. Most hotels and decent AirBnb hosts are happy to provide you an extra blanket (or set of sheets) to nestle into as that hauntingly poor rendition of I Got A Woman scares you to sleep.