(Closed) Do you think couples should live together before marriage?

posted 9 years ago in Relationships
Post # 90
162 posts
Blushing bee

@bears-bub: “is there any logical reason for waiting until marriage to move in?”

I don’t believe in living together before marriage. I’m not religious (in fact I’m an atheist), so my reasons are logical ones.

*I think living together encourages you to “get stuck” in a relationship which might have ended if you didn’t live together and it was easier to break up. I’ve seen friends get sick of their SO but not break up because it was inconvenient – “he pays half the rent, I have nowhere else to go, moving out is too much hassle” etc.

*I think in many cases, living together delays a proposal. The guy already has a committed live-in relationship and has nothing to gain from proposing, so he doesn’t.

*I think you can learn the important things about someone without living together. I don’t need to know if he drops his socks on the floor etc; that isn’t relevant to my decision to marry him.

*Being married isn’t the same as living together, so I don’t think it’s a fair “trial run”. For one thing, when you’re married you’re committed to each other, whereas when you’re living together you’re still two single people with your own best interests at heart and no guarantees of a future together.

I’m not completely against living together – I think it can be good in some situations, such as:

*Very young couples who are too young to get married but want to experience a committed relationship.

*Couples who are totally committed to each other and the guy still intends to propose fairly quickly even if they live together.

*Engaged couples who are already moving towards commitment.

The one situation in which I do NOT recommend living together is when the woman wants commitment and the guy is dragging his heels. Living together just allows him to have all the benefits of marriage without actually proposing, thereby removing the incentive for him to propose.

As a 30-something woman who’s waiting for a proposal, I feel that moving in with my SO would just encourage him to get comfortable in a live-in relationship and not move it forward by proposing. So in my situation, living together isn’t appropriate as it would probably delay marriage, and at my age I don’t have time for delays!

Post # 91
466 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

View original reply
@Fiberoptic:  My Fiance and I have been together for almost 7 years. He ‘dragged’ his feet for 6 of those years and ‘had all the benefits of marriage without actually proposing, thereby removing the incentive for him to propose’… guess what we were doing in that time? Studying, working on our careers, travelling (extensively through both Europe and Asia), building up a home and spending our money on crap we didnt need (our house is gadget central). Just because there was no ring, did not mean the committment was any less.

According to you, we should not have moved in together despite the fact I have had the time of my life getting all of my ‘living’ done and out of my system and it has been shared with my best friend and soul mate in a very committed relationship with a man that I would be proud to spend forever with even if we were not married (afterall, how can I say I love him and am committed for life, if I am not prepared to spend life without marriage?). Now that we have done all the things young people do, we are finally getting married and are planning our future family.


Post # 92
162 posts
Blushing bee

I’m glad it worked out for you. However we don’t all have the luxury of enjoying a long-term live-in relationship without being in any rush to progress beyond that. I don’t have seven years to wait because my fertility will probably only last another five years… if he isn’t going to marry me within 2-3 years then I need to move on and find someone who will, or else I’ll be too old to have children. If I lived with him it would be much harder to leave the relationship.

As I said earlier, living together can be great for younger couples who aren’t ready to get married yet. But living together will (in most cases) extend the time it takes for him to propose, so it isn’t generally a good move for 30-something women who have limited time to find a husband and have babies.

The other issue is that you and your SO were obviously right for each other. But if you WEREN’T, there’s a risk that you might still stay in the relationship for convenience if you lived together. I’ve seen many live-in relationships drag on for 5-6 years when they might have broken up after a year or two if they didn’t live together.

Imo you need to be pretty sure you’re compatible and will stay together before you take a step like moving in together. Personally I don’t have time to waste living with someone unless I’m 100% sure he’s the right guy for me and we’ll eventually get married. At my age, wasting years with the wrong guy could mean I’ll lose my last chance to have children before it’s too late.

Post # 93
650 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

I think it really depends on the couple and I don’t judge whether a couple chooses to or not to live together before marriage. For us, it was the best choice and I’m glad we did, for others, it doesn’t work out that way. I never saw myself living with a boyfriend at least before engagement, but since it came down to either living 2 hrs away from each other or living together, I’m glad we made the choice we did. Honestly, I dont know if I could be marrying someone I never lived with, now that I have done it.

Post # 94
3622 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

I definitely think so! I can’t imagine getting married and moving in together all at once. I know people who have lived together but have not had sex, so I don’t think they’re always the same.

Post # 95
2649 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

I refused to move in together before we got engaged.  I didn’t want to get caught in the “live in girlfriend” trap, plus i have several friends, that really REALLY dislike their SO, but they live together and have no where elce to go.

Now that we are engaged, I WOULD like to move in with my Fiance, if olny so i can get more school work done! haha!

Post # 96
1511 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2016

Short answer: Yes

Post # 97
2635 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: December 2009

I don’t agree that couples should live together before they are married.  What I do believe is that every couple should choose what’s right for them.  For religious reasons, DH and I did not live together before marriage.  Heck, for the first 10 months of our marriage we didn’t live together (LDR).  Ofcourse there have been challenges and adjustments to living with one another…and habits that he has that DRIVES me insane.  None of which would have changed my mind on marrying him though.

Post # 98
155 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

I’m pretty against living together. For me, if we lived together, I would feel like we’re already married and there wouldn’t be anything to look forward to after the wedding and it would just be reduced to a big party without meaning.

ALOT of married women keep telling me to enjoy the planning while it lasts because I’m going to get depressed after the wedding. HUH??!! Personally, I’m most looking forward to waking up to the love of my life everyday and can’t wait for the wedding to be behind us.  I can’t imagine being depressed after the wedding.

Also, I was raised that you enter a marriage with the intention to work on things if they get difficult, not leave, otherwise you shouldn’t get married. I couldn’t imagine divorcing my fiance or not wanting to marry him for leaving wet towels on the bed, etc.  I’m not worried that there’s anything we’ll discover about eachother by living together that would make us want to end our relationship.   

I guess everyone is different and has to do what’s right for them.

Post # 99
7429 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2009

For me, yes it was a must

Post # 99
806 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: March 2013

I always thought I wouldnt’ live with someone before being engaged at least (before I met SO), but that  isn’t how things worked out.  Just made sense for he and I, timing wise, and financially. We are both at the age ( early/mid 30’s) where we felt ready – stable career wise and had both lived independently for years.  My only concern was that I was so used to having my own place that it might be hard for me to adjust.  It was easier than I thought!

Post # 100
5148 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: January 2010

Every couple and person has to do what is right for them.

Personally, I do strongly believe in living together before marriage. I myself place a very high importance on living with, sleeping with, and truly knowing my partner authentically  (and he knowing me authentically) before making a choice to marry. And yes, while I do believe you can get to know someone on a very deep and emotional level without living together, all those surface things, like how you relate to each other when you are around each other in a living together situation full-time, is something that only comes with living together and I do believe that is also important.

I have lived with two men without marriage. One being my ex (who I did not marry!), and one being my husband (who I did marry!). I am grateful, and have no regrets, in either circumstance.

Living together before marriage did NOT make our marriage ANY less special for us. Indeed, we felt incredible about making that commitment as we knew from living together we really could be together day to day for life as it came very easily and naturally for us both (and we each had good comparisons from each having lived with a previous partner!). Living together was not a “test drive”, and we were certainly committed to each other, but I can certainly say that it was for both of us an important factor in determing that indeed, we did want and were ready to get married. And no, living together had nothing to do with determining if we each picked our towels up or not before we decided to get married. There is so much more to it than that!

However, yes, if he had turned out to be a complete slob and expected me to do all the housework? Then yes, I would not have married him (he is, however, a very egalitarian partner and I am more of the slob, so no worries there). Is it possible to know this without living together? Maybe, but in my own experience nothing can replace the actual seeing it and living in it situation, no matter how much you talk about your expectations and so forth of living together.  And again, it is not just about towels. It is about all the little things that you just do not see or know even if you are sleeping over at each others places all the time! For my husband and I, living together was very easy and natural.  With my ex, it turned out there were a lot more power struggles and issues. Not because of dirty socks, but more significant, but less obvious things. There is a reason I did not marry my ex, and I am thankful I did not marry him before we moved in together!

I know there are people who say they adjusted just fine after marriage though they never lived together, but I also know a few couples who found out after marriage (and finally living together) they really could NOT live together all that well and it made things very difficult for them (and not all of them stayed together). And usually it was not about the towels on the floor, but much larger issues and dynamics that they discovered after living together.

Post # 101
1542 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

I recommend it. Mainly because theres ALOT you find out about a person from living together. Its not even necessarily because you might decide you can’t live with him. although that is a reason. However my me and my fiance lived together for almost 2 years before getting engaged. The first few months were rough. We had to learn how to deal with each others annoying habits and there were many fights like “why do you do this” It was a hard adjustment and it knocked our relationship down a notch. Ofcourse once we got used to it and learned to just “deal with the little things” then we were able to come back from it.

But i am really glad i didn’t do that as a newlywed. I questioned our relationship at the time and questioning a relationship is ALOT different then questioning a marriage.  So now i’m glad I am going into this marriage knowing all his faults instead of having to learn them later. I know i love him through all of them. I love how i know everything about him and all his faults because then i feel like i don’t have to worry. I know he’ll never leave… even when i bug the crap out of him and even if i pester him day in and day out over stupid things. I know he’ll always be there and nothing i do could make him want to leave me. And visa versa.

Thats the confidence thats going to get me down the aisle. I don’t want mystery. Ive seen the mystery. I’d take knowing over not knowing any day.

Post # 102
15 posts
  • Wedding: May 2010

I strongly believe that couples need to live together before they get married. This is not about religion or sexual sharing. They have to learn to share the life… Otherwise they will need much more time to get used to each other and their new life after marriage!


Post # 103
1542 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

“*I think living together encourages you to “get stuck” in a relationship which might have ended if you didn’t live together and it was easier to break up. I’ve seen friends get sick of their SO but not break up because it was inconvenient – “he pays half the rent, I have nowhere else to go, moving out is too much hassle” etc. “

I see where you are coming from but I disagree.

The fact that it was harder to leave kept us from leaving. It made us keep fighting intead of giving up so easily. We couldn’t just break up and get back together later so if we were going to leave we had to be 100% sure that was what we wanted. We never were. If we weren’t living together then yes we probably would have broken up. HOWEVER who is to say we wouldn’t have gotten back together. Actually i’m pretty sure we would have.

Also I would much rather feel stuck in a relationship and not break up because its inconvenient then actually BE stuck and be married to the guy.

To each his own but i think it really depends on the couple and the situation they are in. I would NEVER rush into a marriage just because we had to live together.

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