I am sharing this info not because I like to air my dirty laundry but because I’m sure everyone goes through it and some do not make it. Our second big issue in the outback was each other. Somewhere between the first blissful months of traveling with your significant other, and, in our case month 6, you get real sick of each other (to put it plainly). In the outback this is quite heightened with the nothingness that surrounds you, and the quietness for you to think in. In the ‘real’ world you have other friends, you have separate jobs, you have phones you can pick up and call someone that isn’t your boy/girlfriend, you other humans to interact with. In the traveling world you get each other; all day, all night, all the time. You work together, you sleep together, you eat together, you shower at the same time (probably not together), you are ALWAYS together. And that is all good for a short amount of time (girls can usually hold out longer than guys do) but then you start to really get annoyed. At home when you had a problem you could pull all your friends together and go on a bitchfest for a night or the boys would go and let loose forgetting about any problems, just getting away from it for a while.
Traveling with friends, not lovers can be the same, though not as bad since in my experience you meet other people a lot more when not traveling in a relationship. In the case of a traveling couple, you start to depend on the other for companionship way too much and it puts a lot of pressure on them and strain on the relationship. And you start to bicker and you start to flight and soon it’s world war III in your front seat. A lot of couples can’t handle this and go their own ways. Some couples decide it’s too scary to finish the trip alone so they stick together till it’s over then go separate(that’s what we first decided) and others open up completely and talk it through and work it out (that’s what we finally ended up doing). To be honest though, we had gotten to the point where we actually couldn’t talk it through anymore, we let things go for so long that it all added up to be way too much. We had to either truce, forgive, forget and start over or we go our separate ways when we get back into civilization again. It took a few handshakes and a lot of time but we stuck it out. We respected each other and deep down we still loved each other so we both buckled in for the long haul and put the work into it, equally. In the end we came out victorious and are happier than ever but it took work. More work than either of us expected but we did it and we won.
My note to all traveling couples is, it will happen. Expect it, prepare for it and fight for it. In the end, going through this trip and this issue has made us a power couple but I wish we would have prepared ourselves with more communication from the very beginning. Just keep talking, don’t shut up and in the end you should be fine.