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Holiday SOS for couples

Going on holiday together is a milestone for any couple, but it can bring with it a whole heap of new worries. Avoid a relationship meltdown with these tips for a trouble-free break.

Disaster: Help, we've never shared a bathroom!
SOS: It's not glamorous but a real relationship has to be able to withstand the intimacy of a shared bathroom. If you're worried about it, make light of the situation and tell your partner when the bathroom's a no-go area, or send them to fetch the paper or the drinks if you want him out the room completely.

Disaster: I don’t have the same amount of cash as my partner
SOS: You can’t go on holiday without parting with some cash, but have a chat beforehand about what you're willing to spend while you're there so neither of you has unrealistic expectations. It might help to have a kitty for rounds of drinks and taxis so you don't have to quibble over every last penny.

Disaster: I'm not bikini ready!
SOS: You may have already seen each other starkers, but there's something particularly nerve-racking about donning swimwear around each other for the first time. Invest in some togs you feel comfortable in, and then just relax - you know he fancies you so what do a few bits of material matter?

Disaster: He's a beach bum, I'm a city girl

SOS: It's unlikely you'll want to do exactly the same things on holiday, so a bit of give and take is a must. You could alternate days on the beach with sightseeing trips around the town so both your tastes are catered for. That said, if your partner's desperate to abseil down a waterfall and you're terrified of heights, there's nothing wrong with spending a few hours apart - it'll give you lots to catch up on when you meet up for dinner.

Disaster: We can't stop arguing!
SOS: Even though they're meant to be relaxing, holidays can be surprisingly stressful, what with airport hassles, jet lag and extra planning to contend with. If living in each other's pockets is making you bicker, take time out by yourself for a walk or a swim to cool off.

Disaster: Our plans have fallen apart

SOS: Whether you've trekked miles to a restaurant that turns out to be closed or the sat nav's gone haywire and taken you to the wrong town, there's plenty that can go wrong when you're in an unfamiliar environment. Try where possible to have a back-up plan. If that fails, be prepared to go with the flow. It could turn into an unexpected adventure.

Disaster: We've run out of things to say!
SOS: When you're spending so much time together, there are bound to be moments when the conversation reaches a lull. Don't assume all silences are awkward. You can still enjoy the holiday atmosphere and each other's company without having to talk all the time. If your holiday involves a lot of driving, take CDs with you to play while you enjoy the scenic drives, and if you’ll be in your room or on a balcony a lot, take some mini-speakers and pre-assembled playlists.

Disaster: The beach is awash with beauties
SOS: If you're at a sizzling destination, chances are there will be some scantily-clad hotties sharing your sunbathing space or sexy young things serving you at the bar. Try not to stress about your partner finding them attractive - he’s with you after all. And if this head does get turned occasionally, shrug it off and check out the eye candy yourself through your shades.

Disaster: My beauty secrets will be exposed!
SOS: Wanting to spend time together doesn't necessarily mean you want your partner to know your exact make-up routine and which bits you wax. But holidays should be about relaxation, and that includes your beauty regime. Do your essential grooming before you leave and invest in a slimmed down make up bag to help you look fresh faced and carefree on the beach. It’s amazing what a little sunshine will hide.

Disaster: Erm, I'm not feeling too good...
SOS: Whether you've eaten some dodgy prawns, overdosed on tequila or succumbed to seasickness, there's nothing worse than getting ill on holiday. It may mean waving goodbye to your dignity around your partner, but don't let this worry you. He'll probably welcome the chance to lavish you with care and the episode will give you something to laugh about together when you're feeling better.
 

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