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Maintaining a healthy and happy relationship on the road

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Living on the road in a caravan and being restricted to a confined living space would be a test for many couples who aren’t used to seeing each other 24/7.
Be patient
The absolute number one take away from this trip is to not blow your stack when your partner does something that rattles you. This year Drew and I both made silly mistakes while adjusting to our new home, such as leaving the Weber on for three hours after dinner, and emptying the caravan sink without the bucket underneath to catch it and soaking the front door mat with dirty dish water. Rather than get angry at each other, we’ve learnt to be patient and laugh at our mistakes, and then to move on.
Socialise with other travellers
There is only so much conversation you can make with your partner when you are constantly together, which is why Drew and I really enjoyed conversing with other travellers wherever possible. At most campsites there is a ‘happy hour’ going on from around 4pm to 6pm during which time people are keen to get to know you, hear where you are from and chat about your travel plans. We found being social essential to maintaining our sanity!
Keep your independence
This could be as small as ducking into the shops separately or going for a short stroll alone.
I really enjoyed doing yoga in the mornings or going for a swim, and Drew busied himself with fishing, servicing the car or reading a book. Taking time to ourselves meant we weren’t always in each other’s pockets.
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Teach each other tasks
We found our trip a great chance to learn new things, so rather than each having set tasks around the campsite, we shared the load. I learnt how to hitch and unhitch the caravan, and Drew rolled up his sleeves to cook, clean up camp and even wash clothes.
Share the driving
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Even though Drew drove the majority of the trip, I always made sure he knew that I was more than happy to share the driving when he wanted a break. Often one person is more confident driving than the other, but even just taking the wheel for a couple of hours here and there reduces stress and allows you both to enjoy the journey.
With a little patience and by being prepared to share the responsibilities around the campsite, Drew and I have been able to maintain a happy and healthy relationship while living on the road.
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Drew and Court are a Melbourne couple who have been traveling around Australia whilst writing about their experiences for Without a Hitch, giving us the real story of life on the road.
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