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A reader wrote to me and explained how she had fallen in love on holiday in Jamaica and after many emails and phonecalls, plus a bit of saving, headed back to continue her romance only to be confronted with disappointment. Whilst she did see him on her visit, let’s say that out of a proposed fortnight it was about 3 times and when she did speak to him he was asking for money. She was fortunate to be staying with his friends but she didn’t see them either as they had to work and she also endured their pity for her situation. She did give him the money because she felt that she loved him but naturally feels cheated. Her friends think he’s a rat and whereas he’s telling her that of course he loves her and not to listen to anyone. Not listening to anyone could be her biggest mistake and his greatest advantage!

Call me cynical, but sometimes I’m inclined to feel that holiday romances should stay on holiday. A lot of people go on holiday hoping for sun, sea and a spot of sex and can often end up with more than they bargained for when they tot up the emotional and financial investment.

1. Don’t be an ATM. Don’t be played for a sucker and strike a financial balance. It shouldn’t be you doing all of the spending. If you are, I would bail out now before you end up broke. If you hear that word money too often, it’s not good.

2. Don’t confuse the combination of great sex/big dick, with sun, sea and sand as the start of the fairytale. Being on holiday creates an ambiance and atmosphere that can make you feel a bigger connection than actually exists and before you know it you’re building sandcastles in the sky.

3. Ask lots of questions. Yes it’s not romantic, sexy or slushy, but if you ask more questions you get to know them and it also gives you the opportunity to spot holes in his story. If you can verify information then great but keep in mind that Googling him may not be an option depending on where he’s from. Use your intuition rather than your horniness and hormones to guide you.

4. Do listen to his and your friends. Obviously if someone hasn’t met him then it’s difficult to listen to their opinion as they may be basing it on their own perception of how they would be in the situation, however, it will do you no harm to listen. If you have been talking about things he has said and done, they may spot oddities quicker than you. If his friends are warning you I would pay particularly close attention and beat a hasty retreat if necessary. If they are saying that his behaviour is wrong, ask yourself why YOU don’t think that there is something wrong.

5. Ask yourself if you would consider anything he says or does odd if you were both in the same city/country.

6. Discuss the arrangements for a visit extensively. Try not to plan trips that involve you doing all of the spending and always ask how much he will be able to see you. You can be damn sure that if I went to Jamaica to visit a guy that the least he could do is be available every evening! Don’t forget to tell your friends and family where you will be just in case something happens.

7. Don’t even think about being a long distance The Other Woman. Being the other woman is never a good option and it’s not made any better just because you aren’t in the same country or area code.

8. Keep a balance of give and take. One person should not be doing the chasing and one person should not be burning up their phonebill. Keeping a balance will ensure that you don’t get carried away.

9. Don’t bank all of your life on this romance. Keep a level head, enjoy yourself but don’t derive all of your happiness from this because if you get hurt, you will crash and burn. Keep seeing your friends, working and doing normal things.

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