Photography: Kaye Ford | Words: Zoe London
Being in a relationship with a blogger isn’t easy.
When you make the decision to start a blog or YouTube channel, not only does your life change but your relationship does, too. I thought I’d talk a bit today about the compromises we make in our relationship as well as how you can manage blogging with every day life. I think the first thing to note is that unlike my nasty ex boyfriend, George approves of the blog. He’s approved of it since day one. I think if anything is a pretty strong indicator of how that was going to change our relationship and my blog life, it was going to be for the better. It’s not always easy to manage and work your life around, but after four and a half years we’re getting to grips with it. Let’s talk about it a bit more today.
Day to day life changes.
One of the biggest factors that immediately becomes recognisable, is your living space changes to accommodate the needs for blogging and YouTube. At first this was hard, we only had a small one bed flat and the lounge then immediately became our place of rest, our eating space, and my filming space. Pretty tough for a small box room with two people in it, one of them in it 24/7. We learned to work with the space we had, it took time but working and living under each others noses, learning how to function working around it got easier. Four years later and we’re now in a better position, with a two bed house being the one we just bought, meaning I have an extra office room separate away from our living quarters. Easier. On that though, George has got accustomed to the house being randomly ‘set up’ for photos, little trinkets appearing here there and everywhere and generally living under the roof with someone attempting to make things look ‘insta-worthy!’
*That* Instagram Husband video.
He’s tagged in it usually once a month by someone new. I think it was funny at first but probably drives him a bit mad now…! People often say to me, aren’t you lucky George is a photographer/takes your photos and video etc? George isn’t a photographer or videographer by trade. His day to day job *is* for a tech company, and he’s very good with technology, but prior to meeting me he wasn’t a whizz with the camera. I am lucky in that one of George’s most brilliant qualities is his ability and drive to learn. Shortly after we met, I asked him to help me take some photos in front of his garage door (blogging was so easy back in the day huh?) and he was beyond stressed. He had no idea what to do, but had a willingness to learn. Ever since then he took it upon himself to watch tutorials, tech videos and learn about the technology I had, as well as how to take a good photo. His skills have come on leaps and bounds, and now he does actively enjoy taking photos and video for me. I know it’s not the same for every relationship, but I do think with a little coaxing and some teaching, they too can take a killer Insta pic for you! George works full time, and after four years of slaving away also working on his days off to help get me to a better place, I’m now able to pay for other photographers to work with me, and shift the work load off him. He now only really takes my photos/video on holiday, and he loves it.
Holidays become ‘working’ holidays.
When you blog/YouTube full time, you consider elements of life more carefully than before. You look at everything, forward think everything you do, and make plans for content around, well, everything. Honestly, absolutely anything and everything becomes content and that changes the way you view the world. Travelling, and going on holidays are prime opportunity for maximum content, and while at first it was a little strange for George to get used to – he’s fully accustomed and does actually come to me with ideas about what we can shoot while we’re away. He loves to fly the drone, and of course as with anyone in a full time job, some time away from the office is cathartic and enjoyable – which for him now takes place in taking photos and video content. Our trips to California for example, while they are holidays, we shoot content too. We don’t spend all day every day shooting, actually all together it probably takes up about 45 minutes of the whole day in total, we still spend time together away from technology and enjoying life. But things are different with this career path, and I think you need to be prepared to sacrifice a small amount of holiday time each day to take content. Everyone jokes with me that we won’t really have a honeymoon because we will be working, but well, for George and I, time off/time enjoyed is time making art and making content, so I can guarantee we will be scouting out those locations, shooting video together and well, for a honeymoon to me that sounds like heaven!
He still likes to stay behind the scenes, though.
George doesn’t love being on camera. It only happens rarely, and it’s when we have something exciting to share, or he’s talking about something he feels knowledgable about to share. He isn’t ready to be any major part of the online scenes – part in why I didn’t use photos of ‘us’ in this blog! – but is more than happy to facilitate what he can behind the scenes. This may look like we spend a lot of time apart, but we don’t. I think managing time together can be really tricky to work around when your career is like this, but we try and have one day a week fully together, even if it’s just doing mundane things like going to the shop. I often enforce evenings where we have no phones and we sit and chat, or we play a game, or we watch a movie. It’s even more important than ever to make time for each other, especially when one week I could be in another country, and due to the nature of George’s job, he often works weekends too. It’s a strange life we live, but we have got accustomed to it, and we’ve found a way to navigate through and make it work as best we can!
This kinda stuff in life, it doesn’t come with a manual. You never know what is right and what is wrong. I think a lot of people shy away from talking about how these things can actually affect your life and put pressure on you, because it’s easier to paint a picture that everything is fine. Of course we struggle with managing things, but as the years go on, we’ve learned how to work with the curveballs my job throws at me, and make the best of them together. I’m proud of how far we’ve come, and I’m proud that as a team we’ve made it even stronger. I’m lucky to have George, but I know he’s not an anomaly. Behind a lot of your favourite bloggers, there’s someone like this, whether it’s their family, friends or partner, supporting them and making life changes to facilitate their dream job. Today I salute them all, and I hope that we can all give back to you whenever and wherever we can. I wouldn’t be where I am without George, and not a day goes by that I’m not grateful for him.