Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Questions, answers, tips & tricks for newbies and veterans alike
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Savannah
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by Savannah » Tue Jul 02, 2013 8:50 pm

maladroit wrote:
jkisha wrote:
Skankest wrote: she will go on backpacking trips with me (as long as I carry all the gear)[/size].
Leave her home.
It's also entirely possible (based on this thread) that the original poster insists on carrying all the gear without realizing it. She recognizes that he gets a kick out of being the provider-figure and lets him run with his fantasy.
That's quite possible. Not a terrible thing--unless one or both of them chafe under the roles.
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some seeing eye
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by some seeing eye » Tue Jul 02, 2013 9:15 pm

Here is an idea. Sounds like your description of yourself is a basic camper. And sounds like you are taking responsibility to up your game this year in comfort, food, infrastructure, etc. Consider putting your GF to work with the responsibility for costuming you for the event... Plenty to do in the next 8 weeks. Also don't overlook decorating the inside of the tent with fabric hangings, faux fur carpet, some sparkly lighting, a good light source for reading aloud. So one of you could take responsibility for that.
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by FIGJAM » Tue Jul 02, 2013 9:17 pm

Yup, give her stuff to do.

She's a participant too you know! 8)
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by Captain Goddammit » Tue Jul 02, 2013 9:35 pm

The answers to your question depend primarily on how far you're coming from and how big of a truck and/or trailer you have.

If you are forced to travel light, well, that sucks... but definitely build a "FIGJAM cooler" as described in the thread "Cooling Your Tent Or Van".
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Savannah
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by Savannah » Tue Jul 02, 2013 9:51 pm

some seeing eye wrote:Here is an idea. Sounds like your description of yourself is a basic camper. And sounds like you are taking responsibility to up your game this year in comfort, food, infrastructure, etc. Consider putting your GF to work with the responsibility for costuming you for the event... Plenty to do in the next 8 weeks. Also don't overlook decorating the inside of the tent with fabric hangings, faux fur carpet, some sparkly lighting, a good light source for reading aloud. So one of you could take responsibility for that.
I LIKE that. :o

Maybe she will, too. Or has other strengths.
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by burner von braun » Tue Jul 02, 2013 10:16 pm

I suggest you discuss the very real likelihood that at some point she will experience a playa meltdown. I had a mini-meltdown early in the week, more of a 'what the heck am I doing here?!' moment, my first year. For me, it lasted about 30 minutes, but I'm convinced that recognizing it for what it was at the time, a simple playa meltdown, gave me perspective and helped me to ease right back out of it. The rest of the week was great!

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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by maladroit » Tue Jul 02, 2013 10:42 pm

burner von braun wrote:I suggest you discuss the very real likelihood that at some point she will experience a playa meltdown. I had a mini-meltdown early in the week, more of a 'what the heck am I doing here?!' moment, my first year. For me, it lasted about 30 minutes, but I'm convinced that recognizing it for what it was at the time, a simple playa meltdown, gave me perspective and helped me to ease right back out of it. The rest of the week was great!
It happened to me once and I didn't know what it was, I just sat in my tent and wished I was home. The second time it happened, I realized that it was because the Red Bull and vodka had worn off and I hadn't eaten that day. Two Clif bars and a solid 1-liter chug of cold water and the world was beautiful again.

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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by Eric » Wed Jul 03, 2013 1:25 am

burner von braun wrote:I suggest you discuss the very real likelihood that at some point she will experience a playa meltdown. I had a mini-meltdown early in the week, more of a 'what the heck am I doing here?!' moment, my first year. For me, it lasted about 30 minutes, but I'm convinced that recognizing it for what it was at the time, a simple playa meltdown, gave me perspective and helped me to ease right back out of it. The rest of the week was great!
This is critical!

I've had a playa meltdown every year I've been - combination of heat, exhaustion, long separation from the boyfriend (BMan is the longest we're apart all year, and he definitely isn't interested in going) - and it's doesn't matter that I've been going since '03 and am far from inexperienced on the playa. They happen, and when I get to the tired & cranky point towards the end of the week I'd better be prepared to deal with it like an adult. Knowing what it is has made that much easier: get some quiet time, let my camp-mates know I need some quiet time, eat some food & drink a lot of electrolytes, and relax. I think my longest has been about an hour, and didn't affect anyone but myself. If I hadn't known it was a possibility, it would have been uglier.
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by MacGlenver » Wed Jul 03, 2013 5:36 am

2 thoughts:

1. Don't overprepare. The exhaustion from pre-burn prep can often transfer onto the playa, and you start out trying to play catch up (happened to me last year, and was tough). Try to be sure you're done preparing several days before you head out so that you can recover and it doesnt carry over.

2. Since she's reading this forum, she may try TOO hard not to get upset out there (knowing how much you're trying to prevent it). Talk about a way for her to effectively communicate that she's just hit a wall, and that it's ok for her to meltdown/cry/need you, so that she doesnt bottle it up for 3 days and then REALLY lose it.

From your further description of her and her willingness to prepare for the burn, it sounds like you're on a good path. Just help her realize that she WILL have low moments out there, guaranteed 100%. It's been a part of every burn i've ever been to (regionals & big burns), and I've actually learned to recognize and sort of appreciate it (then I go eat & drink some water).
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by Sic Pup » Wed Jul 03, 2013 5:41 am

Great thread and some great advice. Thanks for posting and being open to these folk's critiquing and opining, I'm sure many can benefit from the insight.

Not to be a Debbie Downer (but my given name is Thomas, after all) the one thing I'd be concerned about is whether she feels you're going to go no matter what and she's just hanging on for the ride for fear of what might ensue if she didn't and is just playing the trooper as a defensive move. If there's no overwhelming urge, unfulfilled desire, and/or irresistible pull to BRC on her part than I would suggest you need to evaluate just how important it is for you to burn and just how important the relationship is to you and then proceed accordingly. The catch is only she knows the answer to the question, there needs to be complete honesty on both your parts (not always a given) but you've been together for five years and your gut can lead to the proper conclusion.

If there's the slightest bit of doubt you have a much harder decision than what to do to make her as comfortable as possible. There's no point in going if one of you will be miserable because it's contagious and the playa WILL magnify everything.

Best of luck, I hope you guys have a great burn..... or not.
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by Skankest » Wed Jul 03, 2013 9:18 am

Great insight all around!

My girlfriend and I had a good laugh at the last post by maladroit! :lol: It's a bit more like I let her run with her fantasy... or at least do a poor job trying to. What would a forum be without a bit of psychoanalysis!

Preparing for the meltdown (as much as possible) is a good call and something I didn't think of. I guess she should be ready for my meltdown as well. I also agree that a bunch of mini meltdowns is better than a bottled up big one.

The figjam cooler sounds interesting... will look into it more. We're coming from NY state via flight so we'll have to stay pretty lean (although I have a ton of friends in Reno and at the Burn).

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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by Mojojita » Wed Jul 03, 2013 1:01 pm

I think that the most important thing you can bring is an escape plan. If she is miserable, there should be a way for her to leave without unduly upsetting you or making you have to leave too. If you set this up ahead of time, with her comfort in mind, you will both be glad you did - it means that both her arrival on playa and her continued presence on playa is her informed choice. That must reduce the "bitch" factor because if she really doesn't like it, she can go to a hotel in Reno, eat at the buffet, and float in the bathtub.

I just think it's good relationship insurance.
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by VultureChow » Wed Jul 03, 2013 1:23 pm

Skankest wrote:Great insight all around!

My girlfriend and I had a good laugh at the last post by maladroit! :lol: It's a bit more like I let her run with her fantasy... or at least do a poor job trying to. What would a forum be without a bit of psychoanalysis!

Preparing for the meltdown (as much as possible) is a good call and something I didn't think of. I guess she should be ready for my meltdown as well. I also agree that a bunch of mini meltdowns is better than a bottled up big one.

The figjam cooler sounds interesting... will look into it more. We're coming from NY state via flight so we'll have to stay pretty lean (although I have a ton of friends in Reno and at the Burn).
Where in NY? There's a container that leaves from the NYC area (technically Jersey City) that is cost effective for larger and heavier items.
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by dragonpilot » Wed Jul 03, 2013 4:05 pm

I took a lady I'd been dating for several months on a ski trip to Taos, NM. We stayed at a 4-star hotel, ate at great restaurants, I paid for her ski rentals...the whole enchilada. Because she didn't ski very well, I bought her an all-day lesson with Dominic, a very handsome Swiss ski instructor...so I could go off and run the steeps.

Later that day she had a meltdown accusing me of running off and leaving her...not caring about her at all...dumping her...Was this a ploy so she could hook up with Dominic? Nope...her rant so ruined the trip we left the next day cutting a 4-day trip to 3.

My point is we were not fighting for our lives in a white-out alkali dust storm in triple-digit heat, having not bathed for 4-5 days with unimaginable things coming out of our nasal passages...
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by maladroit » Wed Jul 03, 2013 4:23 pm

Every last woman is like that, too, so watch out. Only men can handle hardships or see reason.

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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by FIGJAM » Wed Jul 03, 2013 4:28 pm

Let me just move over here out of the blast radias. :shock:
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by dragonpilot » Wed Jul 03, 2013 11:29 pm

FIGJAM wrote:Let me just move over here out of the blast radias. :shock:
I'm right behind you!! :shock:
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by msj2u » Wed Jul 03, 2013 11:35 pm

Seriously, maladroit?

I take offense to your post. I am not high maintenance and put a lot of work into My camp, so if you need help let Me know.

MSJ
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by trilobyte » Wed Jul 03, 2013 11:42 pm

The fact that you've declared her as high maintenance to a group of more than 40,000 relative strangers probably doesn't bode well for you or your situation. Be prepared for crashing and burning, quite possibly while you're on the playa. Even with long-term relationships. It happens more often than you think. Take a peek at the relationship survival guide Savannah linked, read a couple of the posts in this thread twice, and I'd suggest you bring a secondary tent. Nothing splashy, a small two person tent is fine. Because regardless of your ability to keep her happy, you need to be able to keep yourself happy. If things get tense, ugly, or whatever and what she (or you) really needs is a little space.... you'll be incredibly glad for having brought that spare tent. Good luck!

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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by maladroit » Thu Jul 04, 2013 12:27 am

msj2u wrote:Seriously, maladroit?
Nope.

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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by graidawg » Thu Jul 04, 2013 12:38 am

I am seriously thinking of printing this thread out for me to go over next year, when i will probably be bringing a lady. not that she is high maintenance but it is all sound advice. Especially the get out plan
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by mulch » Thu Jul 04, 2013 5:53 am

The only way I would bring my wife of 25 years would be if she traveled with friends, camped on her own in a different place, and promised not to visit my camp

It would be nice having her out there under those terms I must admit and I'm sure she would have fun.
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by 171/348 » Thu Jul 04, 2013 5:56 am

THIS is how I ended up buying The Behemoth. Last year I went alone (with a camp) and I slept in a screen tent with a rainfly. :lol:







:shock:

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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by BBadger » Thu Jul 04, 2013 6:52 am

Rather than trying to impossibly anticipate every last whim of your "high-maintenance" lady friend, how about having her come up with the list of necessities and creature comforts that will make this trip fly. That's the least she should do in her role of bwana. Hell, she should take part in assembling these items and getting that shit ready. If she's really that interested in going she'll take time to at least meet you half-way (3rd-way?) there. If she's not interested enough to do that, leave her at home. You'll never succeed in meeting her expectations out there by your own guesswork. She'll be miserable, and her presence will be nothing but a burden inflicted on your burn.


Well... unless this is just your pet project to bring someone to the playa and you get a kick out of being a sparkle mule, in life and on playa.
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by MacGlenver » Thu Jul 04, 2013 7:13 am

^ What he said.
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by Roberto Dobbisano » Sat Jul 06, 2013 10:41 am

msj2u wrote:Seriously, maladroit?

I take offense to your post. I am not high maintenance and put a lot of work into My camp, so if you need help let Me know.

MSJ

bitches be trippin'...
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by H.G.Crosby » Sat Jul 06, 2013 10:43 am

i usually just give them a good hard spanking if they get too uppity, but that's me...
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by Simon of the Playa » Sat Jul 06, 2013 10:44 am

you two are going to get me in trouble.
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by Turtleburp » Mon Jul 08, 2013 2:43 am

I bring a very high maintenance* girl to the playa and we survive.

*more than 3 seconds without booze and there is trouble
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Re: Tips for the High Maintenance Girlfriend

Post by lucky420 » Mon Jul 08, 2013 6:51 am

Turtleburp,

You really can't count yourself :wink: ,
Oh my god, it's HUGE!

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