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Leaving a Long term Partner to travel for up to a year...

Travel Forums General Talk Leaving a Long term Partner to travel for up to a year...


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1. Posted by si403 (Full Member 130 posts) 7y

Hi. I am 24 and have been with my girlfriend sinc I was 19 and she 17. About 5 years and 6 months now. We are in a very stable relationship. I have been travelling to periods of up to 3 weeks, just little trips to various places seeing as much as i can in that short time

However, i want to see more, and do more and experience what it is like to truly travel and live somewhere else. I would want to do this for a year, however she has no interest in going for various reasons (family, friends, job, dislike of hostels lol). So i would have to go on my own or with friends.

Has anyobody else had to make a similar choice? She says if i want to go, then i should go, and she will be here when i get back. But i don;t know whether it is fair?

has anyone else done a similar thing? what is it like getting back, are things the same? I jknow all cases are different and it depends on the individuals involved but i was wondering what happened with you guys?

Any help would be much appreciated.

2. Posted by tleb (Full Member 117 posts) 7y

It is not fair. If you are going on an extended trip, and she doesn't want to go, you shouldn't have your hands tied by the gf back home. Unless you already have an open relationship.

Plus, this doesn't sound like an itch you can scratch. Sounds like you got the bug. Expect to want to travel more after this trip. Like always, we need to decide what is important in our lives. It can be a real f***ing drag to be seriously romantically involved with someone who doesn't share what can be such a frustratingly powerful desire. Be prepared for those two forces in your life to come to a head.

I hate sound to callous, but: Girlfriends really do come and go. A once in a life-time trip is once in a life time. Then again, my lady has finally caught the bug, so I have no conflict of interest there in my life right now.

Maybe the bug is communicable. Trying licking her face often, every time she sleeps. That'll solve the problem one way or another.

[ Edit: Edited on 19-Feb-2009, at 20:41 by tleb ]

3. Posted by nics26 (Budding Member 55 posts) 7y

Im interested in this too ... Im going on a RTW for a year in April and leaving my boyriend behind, we've only been together almost a year but I've know him about 18 years so he understands its something I need to do, yet Im worried about how we'll feel while Im away and when I return ... we've both agreed to just go with the flow and see what happens, because as we've both discovered ... you never know whats around the corner ... just as we never thought we'd fall in love lol!!!

Only you can decide but remember if you have a burning desire it want go away until you pursue it, you dont want to and up resenting people who hold you back.

I chose 2 previous partners over travel in the past and I wouldn't say I regret it but it has made me want to travel even more especially as I'm nearing 30 and thinking it's now or never for me.

Good luck with whatever you decide Si

4. Posted by eunsei (Budding Member 2 posts) 7y

i think if you didn't see her during that year, it would be very difficult on the both of you. you will be doing things and living in a way for a long time that she will not be able to share with you. and the longer you distance yourself from the life you had back home, i think the more difficult it becomes for you to still feel close to home and remember it acutely.

if this is something that is very personally important to you, i also think you should not stop yourself from doing it. maybe she can make more of a commitment: you can agree to meet up for a few weeks, several times a year. plan to meet her and travel with her for parts of your trip. that way, you both have something to look forward to, which involves the both of you, you still get to keep traveling, she gets to travel, you both get to see each other. don't know how far you are traveling but maybe there is a way you can make it closer to home several times per year. i think if you want to keep the relationship, than you're both going to have to make some significant time and money (flights, travel) commitments to find something that you can be comfortable with.

finally, i think if this is something you are aware may harm your relationship, you should both accept that this is a real possibility and then you can feel more comfortable to be honest when you or she have those feelings. the bigger fault is to act a certain way because the situation pressures you to; but you cannot be faulted if you are honest.

just my few cents. have fun on the trip!

5. Posted by si403 (Full Member 130 posts) 7y

thankyou for your responses, they are very helpful.

anybody else with similar experiences?

6. Posted by tway (Travel Guru 7273 posts) 7y

Oh my goodness, it's not a matter of dump her and travel or stay home. Geez, people!

My other half and I spent up to 7 months apart at various times during the last 5 years--me over here, and he in Belfast. You know what you do? You just live (I just mistyped that as "love", but I guess both work!). Being in a relationship is about helping your partner fulfill their dreams, not just safeguarding your own. Wouldn't you be a happier, more fulfilled person when you came back? Doesn't she want to help you achieve your big goals, and don't you want to respect hers?

No, it won't be easy. And yes, you will miss each other a lot. But if you're good for one another and give each other space and opportunities, you'll both be better off for it. Lots of emails, phone calls, little gifts, and all that help you along. Trust me, nothing says "committed relationship" like someone who stays with you even when they're 1000s of miles away.

7. Posted by nics26 (Budding Member 55 posts) 7y

Well put Tway ... Im certainly not going to dump my guy so I can travel, sure I'll miss him tons but I love him and I think he feels the same way so we'll just have to ride it out!


8. Posted by Cool Paul (Travel Guru 611 posts) 7y

this is a toughy

ask yourself this question. Will I have a better year traveling or a staying at home going through the same routine?

also I can tell you this much, traveling for a year will change you. There is a strong chance that you will not be interested in your girlfriend or even some of your friends when you get back...if you come back. you might find them boring.

plus think about all the cute, interesting, single, young women out there that' you'll meet that also love travelling

9. Posted by Amie L. (Budding Member 45 posts) 7y

You have to go and see what happens and NOT feel guilty about it. It's one thing if she supports you, but it'd be another entirely if it ends up being something she holds against you or vice versa.

But now is definitely the time, when you are younger and have less commitments, to get out there and travel. It'd be nice if it could be with her, but obviously that's not going to happen. And you can gauge your feelings and your relationship as you go. Nothing huge has to be decided now.

Have fun!

10. Posted by james (Travel Guru 4136 posts) 7y

Tough call.

I'd firstly be trying to convince her to go travelling with you. Tell her about the good times you'll have, the things you'll see, the places you'll visit and the life long (perhaps) memories you'll have. Tell her how much it means to you.

If she won't budge, be prepared to compromise somehow. Talk to her about the places that she wants to see (that you may not be so interested in) and that you are happy to accomodate her wishes in your plans.

If she won't budge at all, then I guess it's cool for you to go. After all, "she says if i want to go, then i should go, and she will be here when i get back."

She may be, she may not be; that's a risk you'll simply have to take.