I know what you're thinking. Um what? Helene, haven't you been with the same guy for 11 years? Yes, yes I have. But that doesn't mean I can't appreciate a different view. This is a post from my friend Kacey and I love her unique view. I happen to be lucky in the sense that Michael and I have set our priorities to traveling. But I love the stance that Kacey takes:
When you’re young, it’s time to travel. If you want to see Paris, hike the Himalayas or live for 3 months on a beach in Thailand, it’s better to do it when you’re footloose and fancy-free.
Sure, you say, but isn’t a relationship more important? Isn’t finding a great boyfriend or girlfriend the mission to accomplish in your twenties and early thirties?
I’d much rather travel than be in a relationship. Here’s 6 reasons why.
You’re Only Young Once
Chances are, you’re in a no-strings zone. Jobs? Not a long-term commitment. Kids? Nope. So, traveling across Europe, or taking several months to live in Japan and learn the language, are doable. You can travel, study and work in different cultures. You don’t have to be back in two weeks.
Once you get older, you’re probably going to have a job that allows only so much vacation a year. The time to really immerse yourself in different cultures is when you’re young.
Find Out About Yourself
Travel is broadening. You may discover a passion for German paintings or a yen to play the Indonesian gamelan that opens up a whole new world. It might set your life, education and career on a completely different course.
One of the points of traveling is that you get to find out about you. Not just about the you that’s part of a couple. Do Parisian cafes or the moors of England set off your artistic dreams? Does a hike in New Zealand nurture your inner adventurer?
Sure, you find out about yourself in a relationship too. But the discoveries are more about the you as part of a couple. What do you like to do together? How do you mesh with your friends and other couples? How much alone time do you need? What’s your favorite TV show to watch together?
In travel, what you find out about is you and the world. There’s plenty of time to find out about you as a couple later.
Travel and relationships have a different focus. Relationships are about nesting. Travel is about expansion. Relationships tend to be exclusive. Travel is about multiplicity. Relationships are about staying put, at least with each other. Travel is about movement and seeing new things.
No Need to Compromise
In a relationship, you need to compromise. You both need to like the stuff you do together. What if your boyfriend hates the sound of a gamelan, though? What if you have always wanted to go to Japan but your girlfriend has her heart set on Brazil’s Carnival? The best way to make sure you see the stuff you want to see is to set your own itinerary.
What if your partner is great in every way, except they aren’t travel adventurers? What if, once you’re in a relationship, their idea of adventure is a 100-mile journey down the road? Again, it might be wise to put relationships on the front burner once you’re got travel out of your system.
Relationships While Traveling
And, of course, one of the great things about traveling is striking up friendships and romantic relationships on the way. Make memories! When I dream about the rest of my twenties and early thirties, I’m unattached. If I meet an interesting guy at the Prado or want to join a group seeing Lake Tanganyika, I can.
A relationship can open you up to one person, but it can also make you miss relationships you’d have developed as a single traveler.
Maybe, like my friend Courtney, you’re wondering why I’m not a cheerleader for a relationship and traveling. After all, they’re not mutually exclusive. She feels that you’re less likely to be lonely or stuck if you travel with a partner. Safer, too.
Because travel beckons, and a relationship is all about one place.
Having fun and being safe is important to me, too. So my travel plans include going with friends. My future ideas might include studying abroad or a tour.
Frankly, I don’t want a relationship to be synonymous with being happy and safe. I want the independence of establishing fun and safety for myself. If I were to look into meeting new people as far as relationships are concerned, I would definitely be searching for more of an open relationship, one that I would feel confident in while being away and doing my own thing!
Relationships as Goal
Relationships are important. Way important. At this point, I want to get to know myself and my life goals through travel. After I’ve done that, I’ll focus on relationships. When I do find a relationship, I’ll know myself and have developed my interests. My life will be broad, not narrow. We can nest together after I’ve seen the world.
Maybe my partner will be a traveler. Our life together will be a journey. Maybe my partner will be a homebody on an organic farm. Our life together will be putting down roots. But I’ll know, in either case, what in the wide world is important to me.
Kacey Mya is a lifestyle blogger for “The Drifter Collective.” Throughout her life, she has
found excitement in the world around her. Kacey graduated with a degree in Communications
while working for a lifestyle magazine. She has been able to fully embrace herself with the
knowledge of nature, the power of exploring other locations and cultures, continuously building
her strong love for style while communicating these endeavors through her passion for writing and
expression. Her love for the world around her is portrayed through her visually pleasing, culturally embracing and inspiring posts.
influence of culture and the world around us.
Find her on Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.