Surviving a Disastrous Date
By Claire Aldrich
In the early stages of a relationship, a really rotten date can tell you a great deal about your potential compatibility. Think about these scary scenarios and whether you and your sweetie would survive them.
When you take that first beach vacation together, be sure to lather on the sunscreen. One bad burn can ruin your whole time. Think about it--when you're badly sunburned, you're probably not going to want to do any mattress dancing. One wrong move and you're screaming in pain, not ecstasy. If the result is that you're lying around watching TV and drinking adult beverages while your lover's out on the beach, beware! You've got a perfect scenario for a takeover attempt.
A road trip can be a great bonding experience as you cuddle up and get to know each other better. Talking about hopes and dreams, singing along with the tunes, being lulled into a sense of peace by the hum of the tires...what's that thump-thump you're hearing all of a sudden? Holy crap! A flat tire wasn't in the plan. Do you have a spare? Do you know where the jack is stowed? Do you even know how to change a tire? This kind of incident can really deflate a relationship fast if you aren't prepared, in sync and patient with each other.
What about that romantic camping trip you've planned for months? While you're hiking to your ideal overnight spot, you get increasingly irritable as the bugs are biting you from ankle to forehead. Then as you're setting up the tent, it starts to pour so hard that you can't even read the instructions that you just pulled out of the box for the first time. Plan ahead much? Once you manage to get a roof over your heads and zip out the bugs, at least most of them, you realize that everything inside the tent is already soaked. At least you've got alcohol to warm you up and relax the tension. Oh, wait! Is that why your pack felt so light? Don't count on your sweetie's body warmth to relieve the chill.
A trip to Europe might be your idea of a dream vacation and a great way to celebrate your solid commitment to each other. You've mapped out your itinerary and found the most popular hotels and restaurants in each city. But you have one major unexpected problem--your passport and wallet get stolen on the second day of your trip. While you spend hours in the embassy trying to recover your identity and arrange for some funds to see you through, your sweetheart is thinking about the long-awaited tour of that castle that you're missing and won't be able to rebook because there's a months-long waiting list. You might find a really foreign look in your lover's eyes for the rest of the trip.
These types of disasters will put stress on any relationship. If you find that you and your sweetie end up laughing and making the best of the bad situation, you've got a great base for moving forward. If you find that you're both tense, snapping at each other and wondering whether you have enough in common to survive these hassles, you might need to rethink your bond.
Just remember, it's better to recognize a bad fit early on rather than enduring years of a mismatched relationship. Think of it as an assessment of your compatibility rather than a test of your patience. If surviving one of these scenarios gracefully is too much to ask, then you might have too little to make this relationship work.
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