(Closed) Adventures in Cohabitationland (long)

posted 10 years ago in Waiting
Post # 3
297 posts
Helper bee

Well, what does your gut say?  Do you genuinely think he wants to eventually get married?  If you have a strong feeling that he wants to get married but just isn’t in a rush, then give it about 6 months after you guys move in to “take the pulse”.  That’s when you’ll start seeing how the relationship dynamic goes and he should be able to give you more of a clear answer. 

If your gut is unsure, then you should have the chat again though before you move in.  Instead of grilling him, say “I’m really excited to move in.  I think it will be a great way to tell if we are compatible for marriage.”  See what he says.  If he doesn’t say anything, then maybe ask him to clarify the reasons why he wants to move in, and what his end goal is.  If he’s wishy washy or gives superficial reasons, you may want to take some time before you move in to think things out.

When SO and I moved in, a year ago, I said to him “Hey, just so ya know, I want to get married.  How about you?”  He said “Well, yes, I  do, but I’m just not in a rush.  We haven’t even moved in yet!”  (With a laugh).  I knew his end goal was marriage though and he used phrases all the time like “You’re the love of my life” and it was already kind of the unspoken thing with his family that I’m the “future wife”

Post # 4
7429 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2009

Hmm, I moved in with hubs knowing we would get married, but we had no timeline in mind.  We ended up getting engaged about 2 years after I moved in, but I really had no idea when it would actually happened, and it worked for me

Post # 5
3135 posts
Sugar bee

My Fiance and I talked about marriage pretty much from the get-go and he and I had a timeline of this summer (the engagement happened a bit sooner as he won’t be here now this summer :(()  I would have moved in even if I didn’t have the timeline though, because to be honest, it was never a worry in my mind we wouldn’t be married in the near future.  I wasn’t even thinking of it then.

Can I ask how old you guys are and how long you’ve been together already?

Post # 6
293 posts
Helper bee

When we moved in together we had talked about the fact that marriage would be in our future and I had no worries that it would happen, but there was no timeline. We ended up getting engaged about a year later.

I do think the article makes sense in its advice (the quote you posted anyway, I didn’t read the whole thing).

I don’t think you need to set a timeline, but I do think it would be good to have a serious talk about whether he sees marriage as a strong possibility, and judge from there.

Post # 7
10282 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2011

I think this depends on a number of factors. How old are you? How long have you been together?

When Fiance and I moved in together we definitely did not have any kind of a timeline in mind. We were 19 and, in my opinion, much too young to even be thinking about marriage. We knew we loved each other and we wanted to be together so that was really all we needed at the time. Since marriage wasn’t even on my mind at that point, discussing a timeline was never an issue but I’m sure that if I would have brought it up, it would have made him uncomfortable. We both knew that we would want to get married eventually but we weren’t necessarily in any rush. We ended up getting engaged a few weeks after our 5 years anniversary, which would have been about 4 ½ years of living together.

I don’t always think that timelines are needed. We didn’t have one and everything worked out perfect for us. We’ve been together longer than a lot of engaged couples but I wouldn’t trade the last 6 years of my life for anything.  

Post # 8
411 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: January 2011

It kind of sounds like you’re thinking this because other people are telling you to think this – don’t fall into the trap! Only the TWO of you can decide when it’s time for an engagement, marriage, etc. I’m very pro don’t-move-in-unless-engaged-with-wedding-plans, but I know that the mentality is just mine, not everyone elses. Plenty of people live together without even an inkling of an engagement, and it’s perfectly fine. 

Post # 9
1724 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

Moving in together is a double edged sword:  It’s great to be together and still feel ‘free’ to bail if you find out the other person isn’t who your thought they were after living with them a while… BUT it can also lead to many men feeling too comfortable to feel any need or ugency about getting married.

Men typically begin to feel ready for marraige in their later 20s and early 30s.  There are lots of statistics on that.  Also while there are plenty of couples who make it from first date to the alter in under a year, a lot of people seem to feel that ebing together at least 2 years is best because the ‘feel good’ lovey-dovey chemicals in your brains are wearing off a bit, and you get to see each other in the light f who they really are.  It’s kinda like whn a bar turns on the lights at 2 AM and you realize who you’ve been talking to all night 😛

Magazines are written to provide baseline ideas, which might be good to use as a springboard for discussion, but I wouldn’t follow any advice based only on a Cosmo article.  If you don’t want to move in without a more deinite timeline based on either a number of months/years before you think it’d be ridiculous to not be engaged, or a timesline based on a goal in life, like finishing school/grad school/getting your ‘real’ job/saving up $X for a wedding/honeymoon…  All of these are reasonable ways to mark when you guys could expect to be married.

He needs to know now that it’s important to you.  If you disregard it now, it will just get harder to bring up.  If you don’t want to move in without either a ring on your hand or a pretty good idea of when that could happen, he needs to know. 

Post # 10
3216 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: February 2012

Personally, I don’t plan on moving in with a significant other unless I know we are going to get engaged– this doesn’t necessarily mean a timeline or a ring on my finger before we sign a lease, but rather a feeling.  I wouldn’t move in with someone who I thought would drag their feet or who was unsure about me and wanted to “test the waters” by living together… by the time I’ve dated someone long enough to live with them, I know whether they’re marriage material.

Post # 11
363 posts
Helper bee

I agree with some of the other posts that it depends on a number of factors.  Every situation is different.  I an only speak from my own experience soooo here goes.

I think a “timeline” is a good idea.  I personally would not bring it up as such “hey by the way, my timeline is December 31st, and then I’m gone”.  But you could bring up (like one poster said) “I want to get married one day, how about you?” And see where he goes with that.  If he’s completely “closed” (you don’t see any progress of him wanting to marry), then you may want to leave it at that but set up a date (in your mind) when you will bring it up again.  “So, where are we into our relationship, do you see us moving forward” etc.  This type of subject in my opinion, can be brought up every 6 months or so.  If after a few tries, it’s really not going forward, then yeah, having a timeline would be a good idea. 

It’s hard because some men just need time, but I’m 33, and had 2 major relationships in my 20s where I thought he was “the one”.  Turns out I waited and waited, and it didn’t get anywhere.  No progress at all.  But I’m not saying that’s your situation, it’s just to make a point that some men need time, some men will never go there even with an extended period of time.

Good luck!

Post # 12
6571 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: February 2010

We moved in together after dating for five months. If I would have mentioned marriage then, he would just have freaked out. I think that you just have to trust your relationship enough to feel comfortable that you guys will take that next step when you’re ready. I didn’t mind living with him at all before talk of engagement. Actually we never talked about it, 6 months after I moved in he proposed.

Post # 13
1126 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2011

I definitely think you want to be sure you’re both heading toward marriage before you move in (if that’s what you want).  But the timeline may be a little strict.  Fiance and I moved in together after a year, and we discussed the fact that while neither of us were sure or ready enough to officially get engaged, we both thought that’s where our relationship was headed.  We had also discussed the future – jobs, kids, geography, etc. so we were on the same page time-wise.  After living together for a few months, I brought up the timeline thing again, and said I would like to be engaged in the next year and a half (coincided with a career change/move), and he agreed that that was reasonable.  He proposed eight months later, and here we are.

So have a couple serious conversations to make sure you’re on the same page.  If he says “not in the next year,” just make sure that you’re both heading toward marriage.  Then once you’ve been living together for a while, bring it up again, because he may be thinking a lot more marriage-mindedly.

Post # 14
42 posts

I moved in with my SO without a definite timeline and now I regret it.

Like Isilme said in her response moving in together is a double edged sword sometimes it helps couples get engaged but in our case it has made him super comfortable with our arrangement and he doesn’t understand why I want to “rush” into marriage. Mind you we’ve been together 7yrs, living together 2yrs, and we have a child together so I don’t think i’m rushing. 

In my opinion you guys should have a serious conversation about what you both expect out of the relationship. If he doesn’t see you guys getting engaged in a year then when does he feel it would happen? 1.5 yrs? 2? You might have to ask yourself how long you would feel comfortable living with him without an engagement.

Post # 15
1724 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

Another benchmark for seeing if you’re where you want to be, marriage-wise is simply to re-evaluate each time the lease comes up.  That’s be the best time to move out, should it be what you want/need to do. 

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