I was reading in another thread about couples living together before marriage and I noticed alot of bees stated that they would not marry someone if they hadn't lived with them first. I personally, dont live with my FI because we are ldr and also, I know my parents are really religious (neither FI and I are), and they would absolutely hate it. But besides that, I wouldn't want to live with him before we get married. I want the new feeling of living with him for the first time, as my husband, and settling in together in our new home. But after reading so many posts, that contridict that, I'm curious to see what everyone else thinks. Is living together a deal- breaker? Do people really change, or do you see their true colors? Would you consider getting married to your S/O without living together first?
I really think it depends on your situation, but I cannot imagine marrying someone without living with them first. Living with someone you really see the best and worst sides of them. I am a very careful, thoughtful, slow to act person- I never thought I would get married- so I was definitely going to live with someone first for awhile before they convinced me that we could get married and nothing would change because things are already great. (Which was the only way I would marry someone!)
I would not date someone who required me to live with him before proposing. I would break up with him as soon as I found out he held that view, regardless of him suggesting I move in yet or not.
I couldn't imagine not living with someone before we got married. FH and I had a good relationship before, but I'm glad we are living together before the wedding. We've seen the best and worst sides of each other. We have discovered annoying habits that we have that we get to address and deal with now rather than spending the first few months of our marriage being absolutely annoyed with each other because FH doesn't know how to use a clothes basket.
Unless there were special circumstances, living together is a must for me.
I would never have married anyone who I hadn't lived with first. Someone who didn't want to cohabit pre-marriage wouldn't have been right for me anyway.
I do not believe in living together before marriage, which is a part of my faith. My husband shares my viewpoint, and this was very important to both of us. We learned what we needed to know about each other while dating, seeing each other every day, and going through pre-marital counseling. We moved together the night of our wedding. We've been married for 9 months, and things have been great!
FI and I shocked ourselves by living together before marriage-- it wasn't in the plans at all, but both of our roommates moved out the same month, 10 months before our wedding. I would have married him without living with him, but not without some type of "let's see if we can live together" experiment. We took 2 week vacations which gave us a sort of clue that we could live together and did multiple night sleepovers that were enough for me. I would not marry someone who I had not done weekday sleepovers with.
Originally DH and I had planned on not living together until we were married. Just something that I only wanted to do until married, a little bit of religious influence on that but mostly a personal preference (my reasoning was I never wanted to go through a break up while living with that person). I told DH I would possibly consider living with him once we were engaged if need be (obviously more of a commitment there so significantly less likely to have a break up). I lost my job with the military (due to defense budget cuts) and didn't want to move all the way back up to VA so I essentially (physically but not completely on paper) moved in with FI 4 months prior to the wedding (all my stuff was in storage until the month before). I kind of was a transient, living at both my parent's house AND DH's house. I would spend a few weeks to a month at each place. Between planning for the wedding up in VA and wanting to visit with him down in FL it worked. Had I not lost my job, I would have stayed in my own house until the wedding.
With all of this though, I was supposed to have a new job (outside of the military) in Texas... and DH was already looking for a new job (they were closing down his store *can you guess what dying retail company?). In Texas as well. We were going to have the wedding in Texas and he was going to move in once his store shut down (a few months prior to the wedding) But that job fell through and DH got a really good manager job with a growing retail company (thank goodness) in FL and we moved the wedding to where my hometown in VA. So yea our situation was super complicated... Oh and we were doing the long distance thing for about 10 months prior to me losing my job.
So what did all of that say?? lol Basically I planned on not doing it.. but financial situations and the distance it would have imposed upon us made me change my mind about living together. BUT I still would never have moved in with him if we weren't already engaged.
@Pollywog: Yes, Fi and I have also taken vacations together, and spent weeks together when we fly out to see each other. So I know we are compatiable in that scenario, but I'm starting to wonder, if there will be a significant difference in getting adjusted to living with each other 24/7.
Ideally, I'd like to move in together at engagement-at that point, I would be almost certain that this was the person I should marry, but if I found out something crazy, like he was cooking meth in his basement, I would still have time to get out.
I would have a problem if someone wanted to move in together in the early stages of the relationship because a) I like my independence, b) I see living together as a way to confirm compatibilty, not to test it out in the first place and c) I want to avoid, if at all possible, going through a breakup with someone I lived with.
On the other side, if we couldn't move in until after the wedding, I would still go through with it, provided that we had been together for at least three years and we had done some long trips/visits together. This is influenced by the fact that my parents didn't live together before marriage and they said they had a fairly seamless transition (but they dated for six years and we friends for several years before that.)
@moleskinlover: Absolutely-- it is like living with any new roommate. There is some adjustment, but the adjustment to him was the same when I moved in with my best friends. It was really easy. Doing the weekday hangouts made us realize we could live with each other's quirks. So the living 24/7 (or realistically, the 1 awake hour we have before work and 3 hours before bed), has gone smoothly. I know he reuses water cups for days and doesn't put them in the dishwasher, he knows my long hair will be everywhere. Those were known annoyances. The only real challenge we had was physically combining stuff and the transition of what stuff is mine, his, and ours.
I think it depends on your situation and preferences and there is no right or wrong. I'm pretty traditional and never planned to live with a guy before marriage but due to many circumstances, we didn't have much choice and it worked best for us. For the past few years I've been really sick, and he was essentially my caretaker. I needed him to help me, and for us it has been the right decision. But I think it's ok either way!
I am completely non-religious and have no moral qualms with living together. But I was not interested in living together before being engaged as at least pretty close to the wedding date.
It's mostly practical. It is much harder to split up when you share a lease/bed/toaster, and ai never wanted to stay in the relationship because it was too much hassle to break up. I know people like that.
I was committed enough to not living together that when I moved 3 hours to be close to FI, we did not move in together. I moved into my grandmother's basement. And I owned a home in the other city, so this was a pretty big sacrifice for me.
Right now it is looking like I am going to rent a home in the next month, and FI will move in at the end of Februrary when his lease is up. Our wedding is 5 weeks later.
i wouldn't marry someone without living with them first. there is sooo much to learn by living with someone 24/7 vs. just dating.
SO and I aren't moving in together until we are engaged, but that's because we both agree that it could create a "stagnate" phase in our relationship. And the end game for me in a relationship is marriage.
But I wouldn't marry anyone without living with them first. Better to be engaged and living together and find out something doesn't work than already married IMO.
It would be a deal breaker for me if we DIDN'T live together. We moved in together at 1 year 4 months and it was another 2 years 2 months before we got engaged and that was fine with us. We knew we wanted to get married but needed to see if we could really work together and there was a spoken agreement about a timeline for getting engaged and if it didn't happen, I was free to leave. Living together only confirmed to us that we were meant to be together and I advise many friends to do it but understand the reasons that many couples would not want to.
Depends on the situation as PP mentioned...I dated my FI for 3.5 years before moving in with hiim 3 months ago...honestly...living together just made our lives easier moreso than anything else...we lived about an hour away from each other prior to this and it was more irritating than anything else driving in to see him 4 times a week....now the stress of driving back and forth is gone, and after 3 years of dating I knew him well enough to know we would be fine living together and so far things have been better than ever!
I can't imagine marrying someone who I didn't live with first. I was with my first serious boyfriend for 5 years, and we moved in together after 4. I thought I was going to marry this man, but living together made us realise out incompatible we were, and we broke up after a year of hell. After that, I knew that it would be essential for me to live with a guy before making such a huge committment.
I think it depends on what's right for you. I didn't live together with my husband before we got married, for similar-ish reasons to you -- we were in a semi-LDR (working in different cities), plus both sets of parents wouldn't have liked it, for religious/cultural reasons. People are kind of shocked when they find out I married him without having lived together first, but I was never too worried about it. We've spent weekends with each other for the past 4 years or so (either I stay at his place or he stays at mine) and we've been on extended holidays together, which means we know a fair amount about each other's objectionable habits.
And you know, historically people didn't live with each other before marriage. Of course, historically divorce wasn't as acceptable (or even legal) so people just stuck it out even if they were miserable, but neither of us are from cultures where divorce is common so that sort of applies to us. Obviously I hope we aren't miserable! But I figure most things can be overcome with patience. We already know the big things, i.e. we have similar approaches to education, finances, career, family. Something like being a bit messy can be dealt with. At least we've got a headstart compared to, say, my friend who met her husband via an arranged marriage (and is incredibly happy with him despite only having known him for about 4 months before she married -- it can be done!).
We lived together beforehand, but it wasn't a dealbreaker for me. I would have been happy to marry him if we hadn't lived together. I did enjoy it though, as we weren't living together after we were married for a while.
My husband and I did not live together first and things have been just fine. Both of us lived with roommates/family up until we were married, so we were already used to living with others. Granted, we've only been married for 2.5 months, but it has been great! Both of us agreed before we were even dating that living together before was NOT an option (religious/moral reasons). I wouldn't be worried about just moving in after the wedding at all.
I have always been very anit-living together. I told my boyfriend I didn't want to live together until we were at least engaged, but guess what :)
We're getting engaged soon (he already bought the ring and talked to my Dad so it's going to be soon. Yay!) but, sometimes it doesn't work out like you absolutely imagined it.
We had to move in together unless we wanted to wait even longer to get engaged for financial reasons, but idealy I would have liked to wait.
IMHO I would never consider marrying someone I hadn't lived with first. There are so many dimensions to living with somone..it's another level of compatibility that needs to be explored.
I understand that some people don't because of religious views, but I personally would not marry someone I hadn't lived with. There are too many things people can hide when you don't live together. If not living together, at least I would want them to stay over a lot so I could observe their personal habits.
I think that the biggest thing is that thw two of you can find your problems before marriage and find your middle ground with each other's lives without getting it on paper, first. I think that this is a good way to know if you are ready to marry someone. I would much rather just move out of a house then move AND have to go through a divorce if something were to happen.
@maliceforalice: Yeah, but the stats for divorce actually show that those who live together first are more likely to divorce. Recent research shows that depends on intent though. Those who move in together with no specific intent of marriage tend to "slide" into it and have higher rates of divorce because it wasn't always a very specific and intentional choice. Those who move in together with the intent of being married, even though they aren't engaged, have a lower chance of divorce. Interesting stuff.
I had never considered this before. I didn't set out to live or not live with someone prior to marriage. It just kind of fell into place for FI and I. We ended up both moving to a new location and it made the most sense for us to live together so we did. Looking back, I'm glad that we got all of our getting used to living together-ness out prior to getting married. We'll be going through enough in the months before/after our wedding without adding that into the mix.
I can't imagine finding out all the little things that drive me insane AFTER we got married. I think living together first gives you a real dose of reality, before you commit to being with someone for life. It gives you time to work on those things, and it gives you time to decide if you can live with those things that can't be changed or won't be before you say forever.
I definitely would not have said yes when he proposed if I didn't know what it was like to live with him first. I'd need to know him inside and out in every single way and that means living together first for me. Learning to share each other's things, sharing a bed, sharing bills, sharing space in general are better taken care of before marriage as well as learning each others habits. It all makes that transistion into married life so calm and relaxing instead of new and stressful. I'm glad were having a fun filled amazing first year of marriage instead of the whole 'the first years the hardest' school of thought. It's also different for me though because I have a son and I needed to make sure they got along well too. He already told me he wouldn't have proposed if we didn't live together first to see if we were compatible.
I'd want to move in with someone at the point where we were considering that we might marry eventually (before engagement). Our first year living together was great but had its difficulties, and I'm glad it happened outside marriage.
The problem arises when people move in together just because it's easy and then end up getting married without really talking about what marriage means to them and what the expectations are. They slide into marriage because it's easier than breaking up after you've lived together awhile, and they go "this is fine, I could stick with this I guess." FI and I moved in together because we both moved to a new place and couldn't afford rent by ourselves, but we wanted to be together anyway and when we got engaged, we had (and continue to have) talks about what we expect to change, to not change, etc. about being married vs. now.
Yes, for me the requirement to live together before marriage would be an instant dealbreaker. I do not believe in it, have no interest in it, and it would actually make me very uncomfortable. I told my SO and he respects that.
I'm not really religious, but for (let's call them) "personal freedom" issues, I don't really believe in living together before marriage--for me. I don't care if other people do it. Personal freedom meaning, I would never put myself in a position to rely on someone, like signing a lease together or worse, living in a place where I'm not on the lease or mortgage and have no rights, unless I knew I wanted to be with them forever. I think you can learn enough about a person through sleepovers withut signing leases. And on some level, I guess I don't believe trial runs work when it comes to people. There's too much statistical evidence to the contrary. You can be married happily to a guy for 20 years and then become unhappy and divorce a few years later. A few years together before marriage guarantee nothing.
Having said that, while we were dating, my husband and I lived seperately. Meaning, we had our own houses and our finances were seperate, but we were together 5-6 nights a week. My husband proposed in Feb, we set our date for September...and at the end of May he got a job offer in another state he couldn't refuse. So in June (with our wedding planned and invites sent since we had a lot of invitees from other countries) I moved to be with him, only beause I found a job immediately and had to move and we were getting married just a couple of months later.
ps. For the record, we didn't discover anything new about each other. And we haven't had any "moving in together" pains. But we're older...32...and that helps. I don't have to deal with a slobby, game-console addicted, 21 year old boy. I got a responsible cleans-up-after-himself man. So maybe just THAT is the key. Picking the right responsible guy in the first place = no need for a trial ;-)
everyone is different but for me, i would like to know what i'm getting into for life first.
my brother married his highschool sweetheart. they were together for 7+ years and never lived together until they were married. it lasted less than 5 months.
We didn't live together until we agreed to marry each other - so basically only after he proposed.
I was 35 at the time, owned my own house, I had to be sure it was the real deal before selling my cute little house! No religious reasons here.
I think it depends on your situation, beliefs, and etc. but for me, personally, I couldn't imagine NOT living with someone before marrying them. While it took us all of 2 days to settle into living together, what if it had been much more difficult? I couldn't deal with all of that AND being just married and the same time.
I think that living together shows you aspects of your SO that you aren't going to see any other way. It's not hard to be on "best behavior" when you only see each other during the day or by staying the occassional night. I think that if you're going in to marriage, hopefully you view it as a forever type deal so I wouldn't want any surprises.
If you had the option to try out a bed for a month before agreeing to purchase it, or purchase it after laying on it for a minute what would you choose to do? Kind of a weird comparison I guess, but valid.
We won't live together before marriage, but I spend most weekends at his house. This has allowed me to see how he operates and goes about his business at home. I know I will still find out a lot about him after we're married, but at least I have somewhat of an idea.
Living with someone is so hard, and I feel like you have to mesh well with your living style. I know some couples who CAN'T live together... they clash so much that they can't stand to live together.
I moved in with DH while we were dating because I found black mold in my apartment and I was sick ALL the time. Before that happened, we had no intention of living together before marriage. We both did it with exes and thought it was a mistake. Well, the mold turned everything upside down. I had no other place to go. It wasn't ideal for us, but it worked out very well because we work opposite hours and we got to see each other a bit more throughout the week.
I selected other, as for me I would want to live together before marriage, FI and I are planning on living together for at least a year before marriage. But for other couples I see nothing wrong with waiting until marriage to live together :)
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