Last year, a viral post spread like wildfire across the internet encouraging others not to date a woman who travels. The post, aptly titled Don't Date a Girl Who Travels, insinuated that all women who have a love of exploration are aimless, selfish and unstable. While I was able to relate to some of the material, I found the post to be somewhat narrow-minded and bothersome.
"Don't date a girl who travels. She is hard to please. The usual dinner-movie date at the mall will suck the life out of her. Her soul craves for new experiences and adventures. She will be unimpressed with your new car and your expensive watch. She would rather climb a rock or jump out of an airplane than hear you brag about it."
Of course people across the globe can relate to this. Not many people want to date a pretentious prick. However, having a desire to disengage with materialistic aspects of society does not make one an elusive vagabond.
The writer continues to point out that women who travel extensively find difficulties holding down steady jobs, aren't capable of making a good impression on family or friends and are easily bored with familiar and regular conversation.
Having this sort of closed-minded attitude about taking pride in having a disconnect from the real world is dangerous. Of course not everyone has to be in a relationship to enjoy their time abroad -- in fact, many would argue that it's better to travel solo than have to feel tied down to a relationship. Either option is totally fine -- live and let live!
... You could date a woman who travels
While I find the majority of the writer's points to be absolutely disconcerting, what bothers me most about this post is the concluding sentence:
"And if you unintentionally fall in love with one, don't you dare keep her. Let her go."
I get it. The post is meant to be inspiring and whimsical -- satirical even. The writer's intention is to give the idea that all women who like to see the world are wildly charismatic drifters, unsure of what's next. Sure, I can relate to this wholeheartedly (my blog name says it all!), but I also feel it's extremely important to give women credit for being courageous, strong and bad ass -- whether they're traversing life independently or in a partnership.
... But you don't have to date a woman who travels
Regardless of relationship status, I feel it's our duty as women to empower one another. Whether or not the writer's post is satirical or written from her heart, I find it to be misrepresentative and misleading. Instead of doting on the fact that women who travel are irresponsible, wild and erratic, let's discuss the fact that they're often socially and financially-conscious, open minded, adaptable and most importantly -- unique.
I've met women on the road who are outgoing, but I've also met some who preferred to keep to themselves. I've met women who prefer to stay out all night partying, but I've also met ones who like to wake up early to explore every nook and cranny of a city. The list could go on and on, but the point is that we're all different. To assume that all women's ideals or lifestyles are aligned with the one described in the original article -- or its rebuttal -- is something that I have difficulty wrapping my head around.
In a time when women are traveling more often than ever before -- be it in a relationship or single -- let's be supportive. Date a woman who travels. Or don't. Follow your heart, be good to one another and hold enough trust in the universe that what (or who) is meant to enter your life will find the way.
This piece was originally posted on Laura's website, Willful and Wildhearted. To read more about her travels in Korea and beyond, be sure to check it out!