You want a break, not a break up (Picture: Getty Images)
Taking your first holiday together as a couple is a great opportunity to get to know each other better – but as this research shows, that’s not always a good thing.
A recent survey by Dating.com found that almost half (47%) of respondents had ended a relationship after taking a trip with their significant other.
Spending so much time with someone can reveal quirks that are anything but romantic, changing the way you see your partner and their habits.
31% of those who’d ended a relationship due to a holiday did so after being woken up too early in the mornings, while for 38% lateness was the straw that broke the camel’s back.
A whopping 40% felt that their partner’s bathroom habits (like leaving a mess and not replacing loo roll) was too much for forgive after returning home, and a further 31% said they were turned off by rudeness to flight attendants and waiting staff.
‘A couple’s first trip together is a major relationship milestone, whether it happens in your first six months of dating or on your honeymoon,’ says Maria Sullivan, Vice President and Dating Expert of Dating.com.
‘Spending several hours with someone isn’t the same as spending several days with them, and even spending weekends together isn’t the same as spending several weeks together.’
But what can you do to ensure these incompatibilities don’t hit you like a ton of bricks at the check-in desk?
Try to manage your expectations of a holiday rather than putting too much pressure on it (Picture: Getty Images)
Dr Laura Vowels, principal researcher and sex therapist at sex therapy app, Blueheart, tells Metro.co.uk: ‘Both of you are likely to face difficulties that you don’t normally experience as a couple. This can include travel delays, getting lost, disagreeing on activities, having different approaches to exploring new cultures, and spending a large amount of time together without any breaks.
‘In some instances, holidays may heighten existing tensions that you may not have had the chance to work through before going away.’
Laura recommends sitting down with your partner before the holiday and sharing your expectations. Agree on things like budget and what you’d like to do while you’re there, and make compromises if your plans don’t necessarily match up.
She adds: ‘It can also be helpful to remind each other of the reason why you want to travel together: to create memories, to spend quality time together and to relax in each other’s company.
‘Bear in mind that your holiday won’t be a completely “Insta-perfect” trip; small arguments and moments of stress are to be expected, so it’s important to accept that it won’t always be perfect and glossy.’
Agreeing on a budget and itinerary beforehand can also ease tension (Picture: Getty Images/EyeEm)
If the trip isn’t going well when you arrive, try to avoid a heated argument by talking through your feelings before tension grows.
‘Also, don’t be afraid to spend some healthy time apart from each other whilst you’re on your trip,’ says Laura. ‘Even if you’re not in a tense situation.’
She continues: ‘Having a morning stroll, a quick swim, or doing an activity solo, can give both of you time to ground yourselves and decompress from spending all of your time together.
‘Once you’ve had some time alone, you’ll find that both of you are in a better space to appreciate the time that you do spend with each other.’
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Overall, the key to creating a chilled and romantic environment is accepting that things won’t be chilled and romantic 24/7.
Laura says: ‘The most common holiday arguments are sparked by issues around planning, getting lost, and money. If you find yourselves in a tense conversation about any of these topics, remind yourselves that it’s more important to be happy, than to be right.
‘Additionally, if any topics seem to create tension between both of you, try to discuss them rationally and understand where the other person is coming from before they develop into an argument.
‘Like most things in life, compromise has a big role to play when it comes to holidays.’
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