When I speak to people about my sobriety, they imagine either that I am fighting a constant battle against temptation or that I no longer have any thoughts about drinking at all. The reality is somewhere in between. The best way to describe it is through the metaphor of something most of us can relate to - a relationship with an ex-partner, from the initial meet, to the aftermath of the break-up.
Every couple have their own reasons to leave the normal life behind. It doesn't matter why, how, where and when they travel. The important lesson to learn is that you can have a happy marriage without: a standard job, a mortgage, kids and the pressure that society puts on you.
The start-up roller coaster cliches are an understatement, and every facet of every person and relationship will be exposed in the process. If you already know every side of a person and a relationship - you're doing a pretty good job de-risking the chance of a personnel implosion.
At sixteen, I moved to France on an Erasmus exchange, the Internet was brand new and email was going to be our main form of contact with people back home. I set up my first ever email account. I did loads of different searches for suitable id's for myself.
Funny things, aren't they; friendships? When they're good, you feel like you're wrapped up in a lovely emotionally supportive and hilarious bubble, but when they go south, it can be tricky to know how to handle it, devastating, even.
Both men and women will stay loyal and supportive to their partners for many years because of the deep rooted love they have for them, however, this doesn't mean that other elements of the relationship should be taken for granted.
At the end, no one wants to get hurt again. Or no one wants to invest their time in romancing and find that only a few months down the line 'not to be chosen'. Rejection hurts. Bad relationships hurt as well.
As your average human being that grew up in the nineties and early noughties; I like to live in a reality that involves Britney and Justin eventually stopping this masquerade of 'living separate and happy lives', and one day get back together.
From what I've heard off of older, worldly people, I've found that your twenties is a decade you could potentially afford to piss into a can. They're like SATs (those tests at the end of primary school. Were they even called SATs? Who knows).
Love doesn't make sense. Love isn't supposed to. Love is here to catch you off guard, surprise the heck out of you, to show up when you aren't expecting it and make a mess of things. Love's job is to challenge you, make you a better person, sustain you through difficult times.
They tell me that I make them laugh. That say they like me. They tell me that I'm interesting, independent or 'unique'. (Which roughly translated means 'I'd rather take a bath in regurgitated cat sick than go out with you'.) However successful the dates, the follow up is much the same.
We have all had 'fiery' relationships. You know the kind, those volatile relationships that vacillate between rage and lust. They are the stuff of bad movies and cult novels. You enter into these relationships knowing the danger, but you do it anyway.
Whether your relationships at work are good, dreadful, or indifferent, there's always room for improvement.
Unfortunately I'm not in a position to comment on how Stephen and Elliot got together, nor on the validity of their relationship. I can however tell you about my relationship with a 55 year old that started when I was 23.
Being a week in, it's probably fair to say that most people will have broken their well-intentioned resolutions. With this in mind, it might be a good time to consider that, for a change, instead of giving yourself a list of things you are not going to do this year, why not start 2015 with a list of things you are going to do.
10 years on, we should be reflecting on how we can once again build the relationships. This is vital for the country to move forward otherwise those that lost their lives in that terrible natural disaster and since then, would have lost it in vain.