alone time in a marriage

Jazzcaster21

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I never thought I would post a non guitar/music related post on this forum but, here I go.

I have been married for 3 1/2 years but my wife and I have been together now for almost 11. In that time she has traveled often for work while I have never been anywhere by myself outside of playing local gigs. It never occurred to me that should be something to do, take a personal trip by myself. All the vacations we have taken since we have been together have been either as a couple or with her stepson but have never taken our own solo trips. Granted, work trips are different than non-work trips but you are still going away by yourself for a few days. My neighbors who have been married for over 30 years mentioned it last night as a way for me to recharge my batteries. Not to go into that much detail here but in a few words, my marriage has been under a lot of tension lately, mostly due to my wife's work (it's a pretty high-stress job at times) and other things. So now I am thinking a solo weekend trip might be a good idea.
For all you other married people in this forum, is this something you do or have done? Or do you travel with your significant other all the time when it's not work-related?
 

BigDaddyLH

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In the Before Times, my wife went by herself to Australia to visit her relatives. We decided it was too expensive as a trip for two.

These days, we are apart because of business trips often enough not to "need" separate holidays. And to be honest, I'm so cheap that I would feel guilty treating myself to a solo trip. I've got to work on that because I feel there's nothing wrong with it, but I can't bring myself to even consider it seriously...
 

David C

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I worked many years with full weeks of hard business travel, so anytime I left home without my wife, it was business. Personally, I don't believe in taking a vacation without your spouse unless it involves a group purpose, such as fishing, hunting, camping, or golfing. I have never participated in any of those adventures personally.

If your wife is taking such adventures, my question is why not join her on a few of her trips? You didn't say where she went, but you can have fun after work or spend some weekend time. In other words, mix a little fun in with her trips. If she travels by plane, then you should have enough points to fly for free, she should have enough hotel points to stay the weekend, possibly rental cars can be added for short change or use points there also.

I personally feel you should join her for some of these trips here and there. My wife and I did that for many years and she got to see a lot of the US for the price of the extra meals and that was about it.
 

dlew919

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I hated it when I did it and when my wife did it she hated it. She actually tricked me out of going overseas, and regretted it - went with a work colleague who can't walk far and has no ambition to see things. My wife later admitted that was a massibe mistake, and that I should have gone. I went on what was essentially a sporting group for my son, not alone, but with a group of people who individually I like, but collectively I loath (long story, not for here). and thought it ridiculous.

If it works for you though, you should do it. Especially if there's tension and problems. Perspective and space can fix all manner of things.
 

JL_LI

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I had a pretty high stress job that involved a lot of travel. The travel was actually my chance to recharge. I had the opportunity to work in 11 countries on four continents and visit 40, mostly on air miles and hotel points. I don’t know how my wife bore up under the load except I guess her reward was weekends in Paris and a few trips of a lifetime.

You and your wife need a real vacation. Not Mexico or the Caribbean but someplace you need to fly to overnight. And stay a while. You also need to get off on your own. Fishing? Motorcycle through the Rockies? Something. Both are necessary to keep your life and your wife’s from being the same old same old over and over again. Fly in the front of the jet. Stay in an upscale hotel if you can. You both deserve it. And you both need it.
 

dlew919

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Actually, I just remembered too, a friend of mine (he died at 92 a few years back) said the secret to his long marriage was time apart - he'd work in Melbourne through the week, and his wife stayed on the farm. He'd see her weekends.

They were married over 60 years..
 

stormsedge

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Alone time for me is important. Mrs was just saying something about it yesterday before I tuned her out 😂🤣. My career took me away from home frequently and often for 6-8 months at a time. We used to joke, "isn't it about time for the ship to go out?".

After retirement, I turned that into a lot of long days hunting and periodic trips to ride my bicycle in endurance events prior to the pandemonium. As I mentioned, yesterday it was apparently clear to her that I should plan something (my last away game was a January wedding in TX).

Short answer: alone time has always helped us (>44yrs).
 

0SubSeanik0

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I'm not sure if this works for your situation, but here's an idea to split the difference: join your wife on one of her work trips, and extend it for a day or two beyond her work so you have time together. In the meantime, while she's working, you do your day trips, explore the area, etc.

My wife and I often do this to save money (half of the trip is paid for, plus free lodging for both of us during her work days, lol). In your case, it might also be a way to shoehorn your "me" time without it seeming like a threat or consequence of the current marital stress.
 
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Telekarster

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My wife and I have been together for over 30 years. In that time we've taken weekend jaunts without each other, and it's been fine. It depends, I think, on the strength of the marriage. When we're not together, we're together... if that makes sense. Do we miss each other? Of course. Is it good to get away sometimes? It's healthy for both of us. We don't do this often mind you, maybe once or twice in 2 years, or if the trip is necessary and unavoidable like a family situation or job related. Even then we'll talk with each other over the phone for about an hour in the evening, to catch up, etc. etc.

IMO I do think it's something you and your wife should talk about first, and get each others take on the idea i.e. do both feel that it would be beneficial to have a "guys weekend trip" or a "gals weekend trip"? And not the whole "He just doesn't want to be around me... :(" sort of thing. Case in point - A good friend of mines wife just took a long weekend trip with their daughter, to get away from home for a bit. It was great for he and her because she had a good time with her daughter and got some real Mother/Daughter time together, and my buddy and I got together and worked on music and recording, without interruption! If you see what I mean... in all cases it was an agreement between husband and wife, however, so again it boils down to relationship strength IMO and FWIW.
 

Si G X

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I'm not married but I have been in the same relationship for 25 years, lived together for 24 and have 2 (adult) children, so as good as married.

We both spend time 'doing our own things' which is simply because we don't have exactly the same interests. It's never for long vacation type deals, but we've been away for a long weekend to see a friend, been to see bands, stuff like that.. and every week I go out with a mate for the evening... so maybe that's why we don't feel the need for any extended time away from each other. If we spent every hour of every week together then it might be different but it's never been like that. To be honest, with work and other things it's usually only at the weekend that we really get to do nice things together.
 

Lawdawg

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Yes my wife and I will sometimes take non-work trips without the other. Typically it's as part of a friend group (the proverbial boys/girls trip to Vegas or wherever) or for a quick visit with a relative. I do think it's important in a healthy marriage for each spouse to have some independent time - whatever that looks like for a particular couple.

That said, it's impossible to generalize too much about relationships, they're all so unique. What's worked for us (we've been married 19 years) may not work for everyone. It does sound like maybe your wife (who has the stressful work situation) needs some time to recharge as much or maybe even more than you perhaps.
 

bobio

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I don't think there is one answer to this, every relationship is different. My wife is an extrovert, while the kids and I are all introverts. The wife would go stir crazy if she didn't get out of the house every now and then. She has taken trips with her girlfriends and to see her mom. She recently went to visit her mom to help her pack up as she is moving to a new home. The only time I have gone anywhere without her is taking my son across the state to his Transplant appointments. We do most things as family though, planning a trip to DC to hit the museums later this year and a resumption of our annual vacation at Disney next year.
 

BigDaddyLH

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I don't think there is one answer to this, every relationship is different. My wife is an extrovert, while the kids and I are all introverts. The wife would go stir crazy if she didn't get out of the house every now and then.

This is an aside but figuring out the introvert/extrovert thing was a huge benefit to our marriage. My wife is an extrovert and I'm an introvert, like you two. The key thing for us was the realisation that neither "hates" being with or away from people but...
* Being around people charges up an extrovert's battery, but is wears down an introvert's battery.
* Conversely, being away from people charges up an introvert's battery, but is wears down an extrovert's battery.
 

yegbert

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Supposedly, absence makes the heart grow fonder. 😕

The first time I chose to go away from a sweetheart for a while I was 19 and just dating, and I wasn’t sure if she had “lost that loving feeling” for ever or not. I joined the AF and a little later realized that she was for ever gone to me. Well, I found out anyway. :cool:

The recent time I was (still am for now!) married, 68 and had had some health problems. I took a month to stay in another state with my sister to help her do some gardening and yard work. I’m back, the jury is still out this time. :confused:

I suggest praying about it for a good outcome. 🙏
 

JL_LI

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I'm not sure if this works for your situation, but here's an idea to split the difference: join your wife on one of her work trips, and extend it for a day or two beyond her work so you have time together. In the meantime, while she's working, you do your day trips, explore the area, etc.

My wife and I often do this to save money (half of the trip is paid for, plus free lodging for both of us during her work days, lol. In your case, it might also be a way to shoehorn your "me" time without it seeming like a threat or consequence of the current marital stress.
This is a great idea. My wife came along on trips to Amsterdam, Glasgow, and Lubeck, and Vancouver. We extended all of them. She came with me and brought the kids along when I was working in Woods Hole. They loved fishing off the MBL pier. Family vacations on the company dime are always a good thing.
 

Chud

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Like a few others have mentioned, we don't typically vacation without each other, but there have been a few exceptions for her and for me. I don't think it can ever be a one size fits all situation on whether spending substantial time apart is right for your marriage, or whether it's just prioritizing each of your own time for yourselves when needed that would be better for your own relationship. That's something you both need to discuss, compromise, and agree on for yourselves.

My wife doesn't travel for work, and I don't much now either, but when I was a consultant I did a fair amount of travel. She joined on a few choice trips to EU and to the west coast and we made it a vacation once my work was done. Worked out well the times we did it, but those decisions were highly selective.
 

Si G X

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This is a great idea. My wife came along on trips to Amsterdam, Glasgow, and Lubeck, and Vancouver. We extended all of them. She came with me and brought the kids along when I was working in Woods Hole. They loved fishing off the MBL pier. Family vacations on the company dime are always a good thing.

maybe I'm getting confused but isn't this the opposite of what he's thinking about?

He's asking if he should do something on his own, doing the above he'd be just crashing his wife's time on her own.. that could make things worse.
 

JL_LI

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maybe I'm getting confused but isn't this the opposite of what he's thinking about?

He's asking if he should do something on his own, doing the above he'd be just crashing his wife's time on her own.. that could make things worse.
Read my Post #5. You need both. What’s more, the OP’s wife is the one traveling. He can recharge while she works. My wife had plenty of alone time while I was working and we had together time afterwards. Woods Hole was like a vacation for her. The Vinyard was a ferry ride away while I worked. As for crashing his wife’s time, I had alone time in too many places to count on business travel. Having my wife along on one trip to Amsterdam, one trip to Glasgow, or one trip to Vancouver was no imposition at all. Having her along on the longer Woods Hole trips was actually fun.
 

Si G X

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Read my Post #5. You need both. What’s more, the OP’s wife is the one traveling. He can recharge while she works. My wife had plenty of alone time while I was working and we had together time afterwards. Woods Hole was like a vacation for her. The Vinyard was a ferry ride away while I worked. As for crashing his wife’s time, I had alone time in too many places to count on business travel. Having my wife along on one trip to Amsterdam, one trip to Glasgow, or one trip to Vancouver was no imposition at all. Having her along on the longer Woods Hole trips was actually fun.

absolutely, you do need both. Sorry yes... it makes more sense now I've read #5
 




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