Traveling Abroad With (Or Without) A Boyfriend

Here’s a topic that’s been affecting my decision to accept the Auxiliares en España program in Spain for a year.

I’ve been with my boyfriend for almost 5 years. Last year he convinced me not to go, which made sense to me at the time. It wasn’t the right time between my job, my relationship, my mental insecurity about my age (I was 29 while most people who do this program are right out of college), and my family. I wasn’t upset about the decision, but I still wanted to go someday. So this year I applied again for both of us.

Now the time has come. We both received placement together, but this isn’t his thing. He doesn’t even want to do it, he just wants to be with me and is willing to sacrifice a year to come with me. But his desires are to stay here, get a job and save up money for the future, and start growing up. I can’t fault him for that; I can only praise that. He is wonderful for having a level head and wanting what’s best for us and our relationship. I hate that I’m being selfish and asking him to come with me. I know it would be a great experience for him too and he would love it once we got there; he’s just nervous right now, but I don’t want to force him to do something he’s not comfortable with.

On the other hand, I want my loved one with me when I travel Europe and see the romantic city of Paris, or beautiful Germany around Christmas time. I want to learn the secrets of our little town of Jaen, Spain with him and participate in Spanish customs like siestas and tapas with my special someone. I want to experience all of these things with him and can’t imagine doing it without him.

So what do we do? I have already gotten all of my visa items together with only 1 step left: getting the visa. He still needs to get everything. So basically, I’m definitely going and he is 50/50. Either stay home and get a job and be a real grown-up (and we break up, each of us sacrificing so he can get his life on track and I can truly experience Europe without him worrying about me), or put everything on hold, try to figure out what to do with apartment rent, car payment, bills, etc. and go frolic in Spain for 8 months and then come home to all of the same problems.

Everything is happening fast, and decisions have to be made fast. Getting the visa is a long, hard process. It’s a scary thought moving to another continent. It’s a scary thought to leave the one you love for a year knowing it will cause a separation.

So what now?

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