Living full time in an RV with your significant other can be truly amazing, yet very challenging at times. I said it can be repulsive, but Joe said, “How dare you say that about me, lol”. If there were any secrets before, living in a 26ft confined area can really test your love and compatibility in a relationship. If there’s one thing for certain, you’ll learn a lot about each and spend a significant amount of time together. Yesterday Joe and I were talking about how many days it’s been that we spent all 24 hours, give or take quick trips to the store, or exploring a few times, and we settled somewhere on a couple of months. Although, that doesn’t sound like a lot of time, were ACTUALLY talking about the full 24 hours in a day. Add in all the stressful situations that arise while RVing or towing and it can really test your love and patience for one another. Luckily, Joe and I have no other options. We are far too ridiculous for anyone else. We can’t even dump our black tank without cracking childish jokes while doing so.
Disclaimer: We are going to get honest here. If you find the truth of bodily functions, extended periods of no showers, or just find childish bathroom humor too much, STOP READING HERE.
FYI, if this post sounds different, it’s because Joe and I are writing this one together and he is basically a man child.
So here goes, The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly….
- Living in an RV for a period of time allows me to explore the USA with my lova. I’m seeing places I only dreamed of visiting while getting to experience it all with Joe. I mean come ‘on, It doesn’t get much better than that!
- Drive in the car with someone for thousands of miles and you’ll really start to see sides you never knew existed. Car boredom is a beast of its own. We’ve learned to conquer this by singing in ridiculous tones to each other while remaking songs and asking the most outlandish questions. LADIES: If you have ANY questions for your man, any at all, ask them here. There is no escape for them. All those “If I shaved my head, would you still love me the same?” or “Can we get another dog?” questions you have stored up for a rainy day….ask them HERE!
- You learn great qualities about your significant other that you may not have had the chance to see before. I’ve only ever been around men that totally self-destruct at the slightest inconvenience, so the fact that Joe is as level headed as they come is a HUGE plus. There have been countless times I’ll notice something wrong with the RV and I’ll tiptoe over to him in anticipation of a full-blown meltdown that never happens. Quite refreshing if you ask me!
- I’ll say it here first, I am MESSY! Joe, on the other hand, loves order and cleanliness. He never shy’s away from an “RV clean-up day”. As much as I despise these days, it’s for the best and nice to have someone holding me accountable.
- Space is tight in all aspects when living in such a confined area together. Less space equal a smaller bed. Some would view this as a negative, but really it gives Joe no choice, but to cuddle me all night. Of course, Piper will be sleeping with us too, so that limits how far he can scoot away from me. Mwahaha! Joe & Pipey close to me ALL night?! Can I get a WOOT! WOOT!
- We knew each other pretty darn well even before this trip, but now we’ve adapted this sixth sense as I like to call it. I feel like we can sense how the other one is feeling BEFORE morale goes south. We’ve really learned to read each other’s intuitions and compensate for what the other may be lacking that day. I know when Joe is getting worn out and a night in may be warranted, or if either of us is showing signs of exhaustion and needing a “lazy day” the other picks up the slack. It’s important to be intuitive about what the other is feeling.
- RV life allows for slow, relaxing mornings without having to watch the clock. Joe never fails to start my morning with a fresh cup of coffee with 1000 smoochies on my head. I really can’t think of anything better. This trip has allowed us to enjoy our coffee together in the morning with no urgency of rushing to work. When it’s time, Joe will flip open his laptop and start his workday from the comfort of the RV.
- Quality time: My favorite nights are spent sitting out by the bonfire playing music and the nights we get so competitive in a game of rummy that lasts for hours. It’s nice to be able to sit down and not have all the distractions of life that we typically would at home.
- Living constantly on the move means you’re going to meet A LOT of people. Complete strangers become friends that you sit around the campfire sharing stories with, swapping dinner recipes, or sharing a meal. It’s nice to build those relationships with your significant other.
- These are memories we will cherish forever. That is what life is all about, making memories with your loved ones!
- I always knew I had a girlfriend who was loving, but live with someone in such a small space and you will quickly learn their level of patience. A small apartment is 800 to 1200 square feet. Now confine that even more to the couple hundred we live within. I am clean, but I am still a guy. She deals with my manly annoyances very well. She would not put up with all the inconveniences and nastiness without a lot of love. I know her commitment and genuine unconditional love for me, and it feels great.
- She has been amazing at dealing with my perfectionism in a lot of areas. I do not like messes or disorder in any way. I stress about the little things and she has adjusted herself where appropriate to alleviate at least the ones that get to me the most.
- If there was any concern about being able to deal with each other in the long term, it is gone. I miss her the second I am away from her. She is my best friend and who does not want to spend all their time with their best friend.
- We have become such a strong team at dealing with oddities that come with RV’ing. We know our roles and have accepted them very well. The efficiency is so much stronger than before.
- She is handling all the communication with friends and family. That is a weakness for me, so I am very thankful for her willingness to constantly make phone calls and strike up conversation with our loved ones.
- She adopted the struggle of dishes, cooking, and all the other things I do not have as much time to deal with working on the road.
- She is always so cheerful when I can be so cranky. Working has caused some stress that her happy mood takes away. This has been making me think of how well we complement each other. Without our goofy RV life, I would not have been able to appreciate this like I currently do.
- We will remember these memories for the rest of our lives. She pushed me to do this, and I will be forever thankful for getting me off my currently fat a**.
- Oh man, where do I even start?! There’s just SO much. Just kidding, Joe. Thankfully there isn’t too much I would categorize under “the bad” column. Not to say there’s none though….
- Joe LOVES politics. He eats, sleeps, and breathes Michael Knowles. We listen to podcasts at the crack of dawn, in the car, after dinner, around the campfire, ALL the gosh dang time! Keep in mind it’s a 26ft RV. He may be listening to Ben Shapiro at 5:30 am in the bathroom and think he’s being respectful, but you hear everything in such a small space, EVERYTHING. Sometimes you just need a break from the political feuds going on in the world today.
- Remember up there in the good column where I put quality time? That’s great and all, MOST of the time, but sometimes you just need a break from EVERYONE. Peace and quiet is hard to come by when living in an RV. It’s not like you can lay down in your bedroom for quiet time. Our bedroom is in the kitchen, the living room, oh and the bathroom. Quiet doesn’t exist.
- Speaking of quiet, mornings are ROUGH. Forget about sleeping in. It’s never going to happen unless both of you are late sleepers. I typically would sleep into 7:30-8:00 AM. Joe, on the other hand, is up around 5:00-5:30 AM hocking loogies and banging every pot and pan together for god knows what reasons.
- Issues within the RV often arise at the most inconvenient times. Did you want to wait for the next stop to shower? WABAM! Hot water heater stops working. So either you’re taking one for the team and embracing an ice-cold shower, or you and your significant other are sleeping in your stench.
- First off, I love her so much. Because I added that caveat, I am no longer responsible for what I say, right?
- You will learn the differences you hold in worldviews, whether that be from how you experience something or the conversation you have from being together so often. This does not mean we do not agree on most things. I am speaking about the lesser aspects of a worldview. Things like HOW you experience scenery or a location. We set out with the goal of finding a potential spot to relocate to. I chose West Virginia so far, and she is currently on Utah. This is not the biggest concern, but something that can be bad in the future if one partner loves an area you despise.
- Morgan loves to sing the song “That Smell” by Lynyrd Skynyrd. They hit the nail on the head when they said, “Owww that smell, can’t you smell that smell”. Yes, you can smell that smell. Our hot water heater broke and we could not take a hot shower for a while. I took cold showers, but Morgan could not handle that. I described it as cooking ground beef for tacos right after you added the taco seasoning.
- Too much time with anyone can be tough. I could not imagine spending too much time with Morgan, but more time equates to more annoyances. You will want to make sure you are compatible prior to leaving, if possible.
- There are those days when anyone is just more on edge than normal. Typically, you can avoid the other person if that is the day you are having. Sadly, I have had a few days where I knew it was me, but I was edgier than normal. I acted on the edginess and that does not always go over the best with your significant other.
- We are usually misaligned on what length of time is acceptable to be on the move. I get homesick and am working on the road. She is simply experiencing life and was smart enough to save prior to leaving. She wants to be on the go when I am too busy to move. FYI, save up prior to leaving. She was smarter in that sense.
- She does not like to spend money, go out, or eat bbq as much me. Hey, bad is bad even if I am in the wrong.
- Living in such a confined space will bring you together in ways you probably could have done without. You start to learn each other’s routines. For example, Joe wakes up in the morning, clears his throat for about 15 minutes, brews some coffee, and within 30 minutes -1 hour he is rushing to the bathroom. Remember, I can hear EVERYTHING.
- If you’re boondocking, running water isn’t always an option. On day 2 one can compare Joe’s feet to salt and vinegar chips. Ok, I’m grossed out just typing this.
- You know those cringey jokes that he makes that REALLY aren’t funny? You can only fake laugh at them for so long.
- Mood swings! I have them, Joe has them, we all have them. At times one can really get stuck in a funk. Well, it’s your job as their significant other to tune in to what is making them that way! You don’t want their grumpiness affecting your entire day! Remember, you’re in this together. ALL 24 hours a day.
- Mexican food seems to be a staple on the west coast. Unfortunately for me, Mexican food is horrendous when living in such confined corners with Joe. I’ll leave it at that.
- Differing from the bad, the smell can take a turn for the ugly. You cannot have much privacy when you are dealing with a couple hundred square feet. That is your business, as well as your significant other’s business. The opportunity to stay away or air out is not there. Remember, that contrary to popular opinion, women do go number two. Or, “drop a deuce” as my very lady-like girlfriend puts it.
- Sleep together enough nights and you will wake up in the middle of the night to a late-night gas leak. It will happen so plan accordingly.
- You WILL argue. We never had one argument, and still, our worst argument is a polite discussion on where we are staying or what we are doing. Whatever your standard, arguments will arise. Address them with love and empathy or face the consequences too far from home to take a little time apart.
- The greatest knowledge I can give is a tough one, but here goes. SHE IS GROSSER THAN YOU! She will fart. Side note, I promise she was as I was typing that. Also, she loved it. As a man, our superior stomachs will sequester the scent. Their little woman stomachs will not. Prepare yourself accordingly.
- She is hardly funny, but her insufficient sense of humor will be constant. No matter the woman, they did not grow up with a crowd that requires quality. Get ready for cringe attempts. Just remember you love her, and judge by the sub-par standard.
- As the man, you will probably handle the black tank. Yes, that is the poop tank. She will create things in there that you will have to get out of there. Good luck!
- Your health kicks, workout kicks, frugal kicks, and any other kicks she comes across will have to last a few days. Stay calm and do not explode. She will be back to wanting sweets and junk food come that lovely time of the month. Sorry, we said the ugly.
- And for the grand finale, her dog will become your best friend. Her dog will sit on your pillow. Her dog will lick her face before you kiss her. Her dog will poop, and you will have to pick it up. Just roll with it, because her dog is in a large way, more important than you.
In closing, it is worth every second. Challenge yourself and learn about each other. Relationships are supposed to have ups and downs. A perfect relationship is not a real relationship. Travel, experience, learn each other’s quirks, and you will be better for it. The greatest lesson of all is that the little things are the most important. The memories we are making will last forever. The experiences we had less than two years in are what has made our relationship so strong. She has gone from bathing and wiping me while I was injured to my partner who fills the gaps my schedule and naivety does not allow me to support. Do something stupid and spontaneous together. You will cherish the experiences forever, but also the bond as a couple ready to take on anything that comes your way.