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post #1 of 14 Old 03-19-2014 Thread Starter
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Circumnavigation with partner

Hey ladies!

I am planning a circumnavigation with my boyfriend and while we've been doing a lot of research and preparation (aaaand teaching me to sail), one thing I find little information on is the real emotional impact of doing such a trip with your partner. We want to think it will be all wonderful, blue skies, swimsuits and fresh tuna but we're not that naive. I'd love some input from anyone who has done this so we can better prepare our relationship for this adventure!

Thanks!
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post #2 of 14 Old 03-19-2014
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Re: Circumnavigation with partner

We had no emotional problems at all!

She got off half way around.


Mark

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post #3 of 14 Old 03-20-2014
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Re: Circumnavigation with partner

If you are located anywhere near BC join Bluewater Cruising Association Once a year they host a "psychology of cruising/voyaging" course that addresses issues that you may encounter and is extremely enlightening, we have not put our learning to the test yet though.

This book is a great read, very entertaining and also talks about the stresses sailing can put on a relationship janna cawrse esarey

And here is a lovely blog post of a first passage S.V. Nyon: turning left: our first passage

I hope you have fun!

And Mark, getting halfway around is a pretty big accomplishment, many don't make it any further than one passage together......what is your secret
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post #4 of 14 Old 03-20-2014
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Re: Circumnavigation with partner

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Originally Posted by girlgoessailing View Post
Hey ladies!

I am planning a circumnavigation with my boyfriend and while we've been doing a lot of research and preparation (aaaand teaching me to sail), one thing I find little information on is the real emotional impact of doing such a trip with your partner. We want to think it will be all wonderful, blue skies, swimsuits and fresh tuna but we're not that naive. I'd love some input from anyone who has done this so we can better prepare our relationship for this adventure!

Thanks!
Beth and Evans Starzinger have circumnavigated, twice.
Beth and Evans Home Page

Their website doesn't necessarily go into the psychology, but the photos will clearly show that it's a lot of work, and not all sunshine and margaritas. I have chatted with Evans briefly, and gained a bit of perspective.

Please understand that I want to ENcourage you, not DIScourage you, but you definitely need to understand the difference between "adventure" and "vacation" if you're going to do this.
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post #5 of 14 Old 03-20-2014
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Re: Circumnavigation with partner

Since you posted this in herSailnet I would presume you would prefer the distaff point of view. Major fail, I am a guy. On the other hand I have done a lot of sailing with lots of different people and know quite a few cruising couples.

I have two suggestions for getting ready:
  1. Go sailing as much as you can under as many different conditions as possible. I would suggest crewing (together) on race boats. Race boats tend not to bail in marginal conditions so you will have the advantage of seeing your partner under duress. Crew for as many different Captains as possible. It will help you figure out what styles you like and dislike. Even a bad experience can be an education.
  2. Talk to each other HONESTLY about your feelings. Many people start with the dream of a circumnavigation. Very few actually carry it out. Spend some time around cruising sailors. The amount of lying among partners is amazing.
    1. "We are cruisers." "How long since you took the boat out?" "Three years."
    2. "I have to go visit the grandchildren so the significant other is going to move the boat to the next destination."
    3. "We are still getting the boat ready." "How long have you been working on it?" "Five years."
    4. etc. etc. etc.

Many are called but few are chosen. The difference between the dream of world cruising and the reality is significant. World cruising is hard work, occasionally scary and financially trying (just wait until something breaks when you don't have the money) and amazingly fun if you can tolerate the downsides of the lifestyle. Of all those couples who start out with the dream very few actually end up living the life. There are successful couples. They most likely represent less than 0.1% of those who have the dream (as in less then 1 in 1,000.)

The most important thing you can do is have a direct and open conversation before you spend money, buy a boat, and set off about what you will do if it doesn't work out. You may have to choose between your boyfriend and cruising. Or he may have to choose between you and cruising. The most frequent circumstance with couples of my acquaintance is passive aggressive behavior on the part of the person who wants to get out of the life. "The weather is too bad." "I don't want to go there." "I need to see the grandkids." The actual message is "I want out of this life."

I sincerely hope it works out for you.

Fair winds and following seas.

CAPT Roger J. Jones USN (ret.)
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Last edited by svzephyr44; 03-20-2014 at 01:43 PM. Reason: spelling
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post #6 of 14 Old 03-20-2014
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Re: Circumnavigation with partner

Save up your air fare home money,and sew it into your own secret place. I have always told my daughter to carry bus fare and there have been times it was good!...Dale

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post #7 of 14 Old 03-20-2014
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Re: Circumnavigation with partner

I forget the name of the book but one lady on a world cruise admitted that her husband would sometimes want to push the weather envelopes more than she thought safe.

To get him to stay at anchor and let the front blow by she would start taking her cloths off. She said it worked every time.

So both parties feeling safe with the decisions is something that has to be negotiated or manipulated or something.

Thought it was a little funny she would put that in her book.
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post #8 of 14 Old 03-21-2014
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Re: Circumnavigation with partner

Read a bunch of these back issues. Lots of trials and tribulations inside.

The INTERVIEW WITH A CRUISER Project
Newly Salted

You really need to first go on a coastal cruise for several weeks together. Stay on the boat every night and try to move about every day. You'll at least get a sense of living in close quarters and the effort necessary to do so.

We love it, but have certainly had moments where neither is speaking to the other. If you can get past those, when its impossible to be more than a few feet apart, you're off to a good start.
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post #9 of 14 Old 03-26-2014
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Re: Circumnavigation with partner

How do you get along when you are both REALLY tired ? Let's say you have a 400 mile passage, figure 4 days where one of you should be awake and sailing the boat. Add in some meal prep, sail changes etc. and nobody's getting more than a couple hours sleep at a time. Maybe a little rain, cold, fog, rough seas just for seasoning, some people get "edgy". Try riding a roller coaster non-stop for 24 hrs. while someone hoses you with cold water occasionally, if you still like each other you are good to go.
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Last edited by capttb; 03-26-2014 at 12:29 PM.
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post #10 of 14 Old 03-26-2014
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Re: Circumnavigation with partner

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkofSeaLife View Post
We had no emotional problems at all!

She got off half way around.


Mark
Did you asist her?
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