In my last blog -- "Trips Make Men Go Backwards" -- I reviewed the Rules advice against going away with a man on week-long trips, before you're married. But the authors Ellen Fein & Sherrie Schneider DO say it's okay to go way "for an overnight trip or weekend trip occasionally after dating you for three or four months." And with summer around the corner, your man may be making noises about taking you away to the beach or the countryside for a day or two.
So, how should you act when you're on a little getaway with your guy? Keeping in mind that even a weekend trip presents pitfalls and temptations that can set the relationship back - instead of moving it forward - here are five quick suggestions on how to act when you're away together:
- Let it be HIS idea. Don't drop hints about wanting to go away - or where you'd like to go. Remember Rule #17: "Let Him Take the Lead." First and foremost it will it give him a great sense of accomplishment and pride in having arranged things and delighted you. Plus, if something goes wrong - missed flight, bad hotel, traffic nightmares - you can be patient and supportive, instead of fearful that he may blame you in a cranky moment.
- Keep it as short as possible. Again, as I mentioned in my last blog - almost NOTHING is more delicious than the prospect of going away somewhere with your beloved. You may be sorely tempted to prolong this deliciousness, to take the day off work so you two can leave early Friday, or agree to stay a day longer when he begs - but don't give into temptation! Don't get greedy and risk him getting too much of you. Quit while you're ahead!
- If the weekend is on the longer side, work in a little alone time - even if it's going off to the gym by yourself, getting a spa treatment, or taking a walk into town. If he wants to play a round of golf, say "Have fun!" Don't make him feel like he's constantly under your scrutiny and has to entertain you. Bring a book, or a pad to sketch on, or a yoga mat - find ways to entertain yourself.
- Don't be a slob - but don't be his maid either! Men really do notice if you tend to leave your girly things everywhere, and though they may joke about it at the time, it will register with them, even subconsciously, bringing up potential issues about the future in terms of what it would mean to merge households, and how he maintains his masculine integrity. Be neat. Bring a little travel candle or atomizer, to keep the bathroom fresh. But don't straighten up his things - or nag him to do it. Just focus on having fun.
- Bring new lingerie, with tags still on (but not too expensive). You are this fabulous present that he gets to open and enjoy - so don't use recycled wrapping paper, if you know what I mean. Pay attention to proper grooming, but don't walk around with curlers or facemasks if at all avoidable.
- Let HIM be the one to break out the camera or ask strangers to take pictures of the two of you. If he sends the pictures to you, great - but don't ask him to. If he forgets his camera, let him buy a disposable one. You don't want to end up being the one who's in charge of memorializing the weekend on film. If he does bring his camera, then yours can come out too.
- Zip it. Even with a short overnight/weekend, there may be long trips in the car, cab or copter. If he's inclined to a companionable silence, then smile and focus on the scenery. As Ellen & Sherrie say: "Don't feel you have to be entertaining or have interesting conversation all the time. He will think you are trying too hard. Just be there! Remember men fall in love with your essence, not with anything in particular you say."
- Don't write a thank you note when it's over - or (God forbid) get him a "thank you" present. Thank him as you're leaving or when he drops you off. Remember, it's also his pleasure to have had the privilege of spending such special time with you. Don't act like the great aunt whom he's kindly taken care of for the weekend - act like his dreamgirl. Gracious, but not groveling.
Still unsure about proper Rules protocol on the quick romantic trip? Then sign up for a free introductory 10-minute consult at www.maliburulesgirl.com.