Anyone who reads my blog knows I am married. In fact, I describe myself as just a married gay guy chasing the rainbow ’round the world. One of the greatest aspects of my life is obviously travel. These days, I am often traveling while my husband is back home working his 9-5 job…which he loves. But a lot of people tend to ask me questions about my relationship and travel. Many of you want to know just how marriage and solo travel mix. Let me just say: I’m married and solo travel. And we make it work!
“How do you and your husband make it work?”
“Don’t you miss your husband?”
“Isn’t he afraid you could have an affair?”
“What if you get hurt or worst?”
The thing is, when it comes to Murphy’s Law, anything can go wrong and these situations don’t discriminate between being at home or being on the road. Bad situations can happen whether we are at home together or separated by many thousands of miles. That’s the nature of life and it’s important to be strong and know how to deal with these situations effectively. We can’t predict these things so it’s better not to focus on them but always be prepared.
Why it Works…
Do I miss my husband? Absolutely! But, in some ways, I really enjoy missing him. To me, the longing I feel for him when we are not together is a reaffirmation of my love for him. For the 2017 Euro Tour, I’m spending 3 months traveling around Europe largely separate from my husband. Before I left, I prepared tons of meals which I froze because of my concern and love for him. Even the idea of not being together stimulates loving action towards him. Spending time separate can reveal just how much you care for that person. After being together for 7 years, we definitely feel like we are in a pretty strong, committed relationship and know where we stand as far as being a functioning couple. Our relationship is solid and there is a strong level of trust between us…not to mention we are pretty good at communicating with one another.
What marriage means…
You see, when we decided to get married, we essentially agreed to merge our lives. However, we discussed what that actually means and we agreed that the two separate people that existed before we met matter. Our individual identities, goals, dreams, and everything else did not simply vanish when we merged our lives. I know Alfred has big career goals within his field and he also wants to write a comic strip someday. He knows I love travel, creating things, and want to have a positive impact on the LGBT Community. So we respect each other’s goals and individuality. We did not necessarily become one when we married. Instead, we created a lasting life partnership based in love, trust, and respect. Of course, there is certainly always room for compromise. For instance, if Alfred needs to move elsewhere in order to pursue his goals then I’m hopping right on that bus. A reorganization of priorities is certainly necessary but giving up our goals is not on the table. I believe a good marriage or relationship should add value to our situation. It shouldn’t detract or destroy the good that is already there.
In other words, Alfred and I didn’t marry each other because we need each other. We married because we love one another and that includes the aspects that make us who we are individually and as a couple. We committed to one another because we want to make a life together in the grand scheme of things not because we want to possess one another. I belong to me and he belongs to himself. There are often reasons that we travel separately. For him, his work often takes him across the United States and the world. I can’t always travel with him but he needs to what is necessary in order to accomplish his goals and excel at life. The same goes for me. So, yes, we travel separately more often these days but that’s OK. It’s not like we try to spend all of our time separate but it happens. It’s part of life…an aspect of our jobs and we are going to enjoy it as much as possible because travel is awesome!
There are many reasons solo travel is great and it has its merits.
Appreciation for your Partner
The old saying, “Distance makes the heart grow founder” is absolutely true. For me, it’s always a bit difficult when Alfred drops me off at the airport but he’s not getting on a plane with me. Nevertheless, it doesn’t stop me from traveling. Spending time apart can do really awesome things for a relationship. I’ve explained some of it above but chalk it down to longing. I usually miss my husband when we aren’t together after a bit. So, time apart reminds me how amazing he is and the many things he contributes to my life. Not only that but traveling solo gives each of us the opportunity to be with ourselves. As RuPaul says, “if you don’t love yourself, how in the hell you going to love somebody else?”
You’re the Master of Your Time
When you travel solo, you get to decide what you do with 100% of your time. Want to spend time laying on a beach, no problem. Want to explore an old library…why not? You are responsible for yourself and your journey. There’s no need to consult anyone about what you should do. That freedom is incredible. Just make a decision and go!
You’ll find yourself in some hairy situations as a solo traveler. But it’ll be OK. You will definitely figure it out. Eventually, you’ll feel a lot more confident in your ability to get around, communicate with others, and occupy your time on your own. All of these things will transfer to other aspects of your life.
In the end, traveling solo while married or in a relationship really isn’t that big of a deal. We love to travel and prefer to do it together. But we know that will not always be possible because we are two separate individuals with unique goals and expectations. But what it really boils down to is trust. We worked for a long time to build our relationship up to a level of comfortable trust. We trust one another and value our relationship. We also trust that we will have amazing experiences, not put ourselves in dangerous situations, communicate if things go awry, and teach one another. Trust is probably the most important factor when it comes to our committed relationship and that makes solo travel possible..and even necessary.
We make it work and know that traveling solo is ok.
What do you think? Could you give solo travel a try?
Pin Me, Please!