He met Saidie at a party and crash, boom, bang! Instant sparks. The two lovebirds were inseparable for the next few weeks.
Everybody was so happy for him -- after all, he had been single for such a long time. But then, less than a month in, he announced that they were going to New York together... for two weeks.
Shortly after they got back, Saidie cowardly dumped Don via email. She was never spoken of again. Was it a case of too much too soon killing the romance? Pamela Catapia thinks so. She's a Vancouver-based Certified Canadian Counsellor, who works with people on, among other things, improving their dating and relationship skills. As such, she is a champion of taking it slow when it comes to taking that first vacation with a new love interest.
"There's a lot to learn from that example, says Catapia, referring to Don's 'vacation don't.' "It's rather impulsive to go away together that soon -- [it may be] something we are tempted to do because it sounds like fun, especially because everything seems fun in the infatuation stage. [But] if we think longer about it before taking action, we usually anticipate all the possible consequences in a more realistic manner and would decide to wait until we know each other better."
In short: resist the temptation.
Generally speaking, Catapia recommends just a weekender if you're in the first three-to-six-months of a new relationship and then graduating to a full-on two-weeker only after you've been together for a year.
"You need to develop a bond over time that can withstand the stress of travel and work out some of the normal power struggles [and] figure out your decision-making style as a couple."
As for your destination, she suggests keeping it simple and somewhat close to home like a short jaunt to a nearby heritage town, mountain resort or country cabin. Save exotic locals for when you're a tried and tested twosome.
And be wary of trips to the old country during that euphoric first stage. While the notion of spending time in your new lover's motherland may sound romantic at first, the reality is language barriers can create power imbalances for new couples.
"That comes from needing interpreters or one person speaking the language and the other not, [which] can be hard enough on a relationship even with the glue of a strong bond from many years," warns Catapia before adding, "I've heard many people say they hated that kind of trip or it broke up their relationship."
When it comes to your itinerary, not everybody has the same definition of a good time. And many green couples don't realize just how different theirs are until they go away together. For instance, he may want to play golf all day and she would rather spend her afternoons antiquing. And while there's nothing wrong with having some alone time, you may want to find some common interests for your first time romantic getaway.