There are different levels of bad decisions people make in life. On the one hand, you have the small stuff, like taking the wrong freeway home from work, or eating gas-station sushi. And on the other, the monumentally awful decisions: ignoring the IRS; signing A-Rod to a three-year/$61mil deal right before he turns 40; and, yes, trying to forge a relationship with someone you meet on vacation.
The problem is, of course, that A-Rod's also coming off a one-year... sorry, wrong example. The problem is that movies about vacation flings that fall apart the week after everyone gets home don’t really sell tickets. But fairytales about love-at-first-sight do.
And since we know that almost all real-life travel romances end in disaster (OK, you're right -- it worked for Kevin Jonas. And for your cousin in Milwaukee who met her husband on New Year's Eve in Hawaii), it's our responsibility to counteract the damage that Hollywood’s done by giving you a hard dose of reality. Here are 10 reasons why getting involved on vacation is the worst idea since giving ALF his own talk show.
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Your mind’s in a different place on holiday; you can relax, enjoy meals, appreciate the scenery, and basically do all that stuff your yoga sensei tells you to do every day at home. That also means, when you meet a new person, your first thought won't be: “Well, this won't work; the guy wears board shorts on Tuesdays.” Instead, you'll think, “Wow, that guy looks hot in board shorts.”
You don’t have to see what they’re like in real life
Since there was no work to go to, friends to spend time with, or any of those other things couples who live in the real world have to deal with, what you just experienced was basically a honeymoon with a stranger. Which is sexy, but it's also not real life. Unless you’re crazy rich and can do stuff like sitting around in a bathrobe all day.
You’re not yourself on vacation
You’re the best version of yourself. And, sure, it’s great to put your best foot forward, but your new "friend" isn't seeing you after your boss kept you late, or your dog ripped up your couch, or you lost your keys, or all the other things that make you look like you're starring in a Snickers commercial with Steve Buscemi. And this other person, like the Hulk, may not like you when you’re angry.
They may have a completely secret life
The only time anyone ever felt sorry for George Clooney was when they saw Batman and Robin. Actually, there was another time: when he showed up to surprise Vera Farmiga in Up in the Air and (SPOILER ALERT) her husband was at the door. And if it can happen to George...
You'll miss out on your trip
Unless your name is Stella and you’re on a mission to get your groove back, chances are you booked your vacation to do something other than spend it with someone you just met. Remember, you likely won’t be back to your dream destination for a while, and spending that time taking couples selfies instead of snorkeling or hitting the sites you came to see is a waste of your vacation.
You can’t keep the spontaneity and excitement going at home
Yes, there’s something inherently hot about meeting someone and having an immediate connection. But as anyone who’s been in a relationship for more than a week knows, that fades -- and even faster when you don’t see each other after returning home and (gasp!) meet other people. It’s a long-distance relationship built on the shared memory of sipping piña coladas on the beach.
Their life story could be completely made up
Sure, in the age of the Internet, it’s a lot easier to uncover information about people. But it’s also a lot easier to cover things up, or invent lies and put them online. Facebook isn’t exactly the greatest identity verification system, so the chances of this “perfect” person actually being a recovering meth addict with surprisingly good teeth are higher than you think.
There’s no light at the end of the tunnel
Unless your "vacation” was also a job-hunting trip, the fact is, you both have lives that neither one of you should sanely pack up and leave. Because while quitting your job without a new one is generally not the smartest career decision, doing it for someone you met after a WEEK is even crazier.
You (presumably, since you’re reading this article) may find the wisdom to say, “This is ridiculous,” and stop daylong texting marathons with your weekend fling. The other person, on the other hand, may have seen a few too many John Cusack movies and think that all it'll take to get you to move to Saskatchewan is some grand romantic gesture. Which may or may not involve physical damage to your car... Again, you don’t know people.
You could end up married. Fast.
One thing you might not know about people in other countries, a lot of them want to move to the United States. And the fastest way around our pesky immigration laws is marrying a US citizen. So, that Brazilian smoke show you met during your semester abroad may have thought your complete inability to samba was adorable, but you know what's even more adorable? Your ability to get a green card. You’ve been warned.