That first holiday together as a couple can really do your head in. Here is a list of the top ten worries facing men and women who dive off the deep end vacay a deux.
1. Where will we go in the first place?
The worrying begins long before you arrive at your destination and actually starts in the holiday planning process: How will we agree on the destination? If they let you make the decision, you get your way but the stress involved in making sure you've made the right choice could almost kill you.
You'll spend your days pointing out how nice the weather is, how great the restaurants are and how empty the beach is. If you let them decide, how on earth do you expect to bite your tongue when the cyclone comes, the beaches are full of Coke cans and plastic and the hotel is rubbish?
2. Was holidaying better as a single person?
In bed by 10pm every night at a resort overrun by children? Unable to do the things you really want to do because your other half isn't interested? Suddenly your mind drifts back to that amazing trip we've all had in our lifetimes, when we were younger and crazier when everything was open to chance.
Strangely enough, all the horrors of sleeping in bus stations and airports and the near-death experiences are forgotten. Instead you'll worry that travelling has lost its spontaneity and magic.
3. I'm the only one with love handles on this beach
Okay, so these last six months we've kinda let ourselves go. How can we compete with the local pretty boy or gorgeous babe in the black bike pants or the string bikini who does nothing but jet ski and swim year-round while we're forced to sit in offices and eat fried chicken?
It can be murder to get into a bikini or board shorts when everyone looks like they just stepped out of a Calvin Klein ad. Having our partner there to spot the subtle differences between local muscle and tourist lard just makes it much worse (but it's also just as bad if it's our partner who's let it go!).
4. We are mere mortals actually, we're hardly even that
While we're at home we can tell you just about anything. When we're on holiday you realise we lied about everything
. We weren't really chosen to swim in the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games training squad; we're terrified of even the tiniest of waves. And going to Thredbo for two days on our year nine school excursion doesn't make us fearless downhill skiers when we holiday with you in Japan. In fact, we can't even handle the idea of driving on the other side of the road can you take the wheel?!
5. Oh no, I'm really busting
We mightn't be living together yet or we have a bigger house with corresponding work schedules but now suddenly we're stuck with each other in a small romantic room where the toilet's 2m from the bed ... or sometimes even in the same room!
What is it with romantic resorts the more expensive they get, the less privacy is offered? Booking a cosy room together can be an exercise in toilet opportunism. Will you go while your partner's asleep? How long will they be away having that swim? Can I hold it in 'til we go for breakfast?
6. 24/7, 24/7, 24/7
It's all well and good to love someone's quirky characteristics when you see them for a few hours a day, but how will you fare when you're together 24 hours a day, seven days a week? Suddenly, their traits don't seem so cute anymore.
Unless you work together it's unlikely you're spending more than a few waking hours a day together, the transition to complete immersion with someone can destroy a union. However, on the upside, should you survive that first holiday together, you're probably set for life!
7. Everything must be perrrfect
Nothing is perfect at home but for a few rare days a year men become so worried about making everything fall into place that the stress can get too much … for both parties! Raining when you arrive? My God, the travel agent lied about the weather! A room that doesn't face the ocean? Noooo, this has destroyed everything.
Soon hairs left on the sink by the cleaner and a long check-in line will be enough to make him think the whole trip's a complete disaster and he's failed you.
8. Money can't buy me love, but it can sure end it
Going on holiday together can produce a thousand conundrums. Who pays for what? Are we expected to go "dutch" for everything? Who should offer to pay for what? Are you discovering new traits about your partner you didn't see before at all?
Do they really hate eating by the beach and prefer dark, dingy, smelly laneway eateries because they're "more authentic"? Was that a grimace on their face when you ordered the lobster?
9. Are they addicted to home?
Thought your partner could relax and be all yours for a week of holidays? So why are they spending three hours each morning and evening checking their e-mail, or scanning news websites to find out the latest changes to their footy team for this weekend's game, or what's going on with the latest Lara Bingle bungle?
And do they really need to talk to their mother or best mate each day of your three-day break in Vanuatu? And why do they need to upload shots of your holiday each day on Facebook? And when is the next plane leaving?
10. Will the romance go too far?
Everyone has them friends who got engaged while on holiday. It makes sense days of perfect sunshine in azure lagoons, evenings of romantic dinners beside candlelit beaches ... before you know it, you're getting carried away and asking them to marry you. Or worse, is it paranoia, or are they expecting you to ask them … maybe tonight underneath all those bright, perfect stars?
Or are you worried he's about to ask you and you're already concocting a way to not scar him for life? Too much romance in a paradise that doesn't exist for less than $1500 a day plus tips can lead you to something you regret forever.