A fun trip ends with photos of dreamed about monuments, silly moments with strangers on the streets of exotic places, short term flings and other lovely things, but there is one thing that happens all too often that can elevate a trip from fun to life changing. Timelessly inspiring generations of romantics, this one transformative event is the incomparable feeling of falling in love.

  • Story Tiffany
  • Soundtrack of the report
  • Love Kills
  • Freddie Mercury & Giorgio Moroder

The lucky ones know right away that they are compatible and will work on ways of being together from the start. This may include plans for one part of the couple to move or for both to move to a brand new location together. The unlucky ones know they are in love, but aren’t quite sure, well, of many different things. They need time to figure out whether or not there is a future, if there is compatibility outside of the euphoria of falling in love, how to transition careers and lifestyles to fit in another person, etc…

Words of love and longing echo over Skype

As a girl who admits to ending a date after hearing the phrase, “I wish I could travel,” it is no surprise that my relationships tend to go the route of international romance. As much as I hate to be in long distance relationships and vow “never again”, I find myself again and again in that exact situation. Words of love and longing echo over Skype, emails instead of phone calls, and imagining the other person’s day to day lifestyle without you becomes the norm.

Unlike same city relationships where two people have the luxury to grow together and one day realize their lives are too intertwined to want to be without each other, international long distance relationships go through their own timeline and inevitabilities. Plans will be made on trips to visit each other’s home turfs, weeks spent showing the other person every detail of one’s life in a hyper rushed timeframe rather than letting each aspect of life slowly unfold and be discovered in their typical pace. Discussions about what would happen if one or the other left behind their life to start over again together, only to have the reality of visa regulations impede having a career and the longevity of the stay.

This leads to the “make or break” moment

Eventually there comes a day when the time between trips to visit each other become longer and longer and the realization that your two lives are growing apart rather than together. This leads to the “make or break” moment when a decision needs to be made, someone has to move or the relationship ends. Talks of marriage may enter the picture, but even in these situations, marriage is not a decision to be made lightly and so the decision becomes stalled.

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Like a “Choose Your Own Adventure” book, the decision you make takes you down different routes. One or both of you move to start a life together, like those lucky ones who knew from the start. Your relationship takes on the joys and challenges of normal relationships and time is spent getting to know each other in a different way. Or you break up and vow “never again”, only to realize it will happen again and again, because once you’ve had a taste for an international relationship, you can’t go back to dating someone who doesn’t travel.

Tiffany