Post # 1
Hello bees! I’ve been engaged since December and we are planning for a November 2013 wedding. This means a lot of time before the big day. Fiance and I do not live together and we both live at home with our parents. I’m 22, he’s 23. I’m finished with school, he has a semester left. Ideally, we would like to live together before the wedding because we don’t get to spend a lot of time together between work and his classes. I would also really like to become more independent before getting married because i’ve always lived at home with my parents (didn’t go away to college). Even though I pay for all of my own expenses, I do not pay rent/utilities or anything like that. I don’t want it to be a huge “culture shock” to move in together when we’re married, like with managing finances/household chores/living together in general. I would like to have that experience before we exchange vows.
Has anyone been in a similar situation (lived at home with parents before moving in with FI)? Or those who are married and moved in after the wedding, but previously lived at home, was it a huge change that you wish you had lived together before marriage? I’m just looking for other’s experiences and to share your stories! Thanks 🙂
Post # 3
My SO wanted to live together before engagement. I’m not against it…but after 5 years I’m against moving 500 miles away without an engagement! So based on my timeline I hope to be engaged at the most a few months after I move in. We’ve been having to be LD.
Post # 4
Argh! I didn’t mean to put this in the “Dress” Category. Is there a way I can change this? Does it matter?
Post # 5
@danafish: I’m in the exact same situation. Fi already has his place but he lives 2 hours away. The thing here is that I’ll be burned alive if I move in with him, it’s a Taboo thing (lots of religious people).
I’d have love to live with him prior to marriage, but it’s ok.
Post # 6
We bought a house about 3 months after we got engaged. We did not live together before we got engaged (we both lived with our parents). I guess I wasn’t totally comfortable changing my life that much when we were just dating, although I did hate leaving him every night. Once we got engaged I was ready to go for it full force though. We found what we wanted and didn’t want to wait so we just went for it! I’m glad we did, but it pretty much already feels like we are married.
Post # 7
We’re not engaged yet, but we have been living together for about a year and a half and I have to say that it was alot of adjustment. I’m not saying its a bad thing, just a reality. I dont think its necessary to live with SO before getting married, I’m just saying that its important to be aware that its not always easy but its definately worth it 🙂
Post # 8
We didn’t live together before getting married and really it just wasn’t even a thought or option to have it any other way. We got the keys to our place the week of the wedding, stopped off here to change before getting on the road for our honeymoon, and officially moved in when we got back.
I’m so glad we waited….. Now we had already hashed out & combined finances when we got engaged to start taking care of wedding stuff, but the living together part was what made getting married different.
I lived with my ex-husband before we got married & getting married pretty much felt the exact same as every other day… I liked this way MUCH better.
ETA: I’d like to add that all of the expectations of living together, who does what, how much is spent on what, etc.. was all part of our pre-marital counseling (about 3months prior to the wedding) so that was all taken care of too. We didn’t need to actually live together to get all that out & known, so when we did move in together we really didn’t have any surprises on what the other expected to be done/not done be the other.
Post # 9
Fiance and I lived together before getting engaged.
He had bought his own place and was having trouble affording it. I wanted to move out of my moms house and was looking for my own place so it seemed a logical step.
It wasnt too much of a shock for me because even though I lived at home I helped pay all the bills since I felt bad for my mom paying for everything as a single working mother.
What was a shock was having to think about another person, like oh does Fiance need shampoo too?
Should I buy these towels? Maybe Fiance won’t like them.
I think it was good for us. We dealt with a lot f financial issues and discovered that we could handle problems without fighting. We had some hard issues like us both losing our jobs and then losing the apartment, him having to declare bankrupcy, etc.
Fiance has even told me that he feels confident in our spending our lives together because we dealt with our problems without breaking up.
Post # 10
We didn’t live together before marriage and like amnystik it really wasn’t even considered. It’s just not what’s done in our culture/group/friends/family/what have you.
It has actually been an extremely smooth transition.
I moved into a new place about 2 1/2 months before we got married and he moved in essentially the day we got back from our honeymoon. Though he’d been slowly moving his stuff for almost a month.
We haven’t really had any issues with chores/cooking/purchases/etc, except what I already expected because he’s a very picky eater.
I’m happy with the way we did it, and anyone who tells you that it’s harder to have a good relationship/marriage, a peaceful life, a smooth transition, or anything life that without living together first is fooling themselves. It is possible, and if you approach it in the right way it’s even easy.
Post # 11
I lived with my parents until I moved in with my Fiance (now husband). I didn’t pay rent or anything like that either, just my own expenses. To me, I dont think it would have been any different if we wait until we got married. Basically moving in engaged, we started living the “married life” and nothing changed after the wedding. I dont really think there was a huge shock. The only shock for me is trying to keep us as well fed as my mother had me. My husband and I are both savers and manage money pretty much the same so there was nothing to get used to there. The household chores took a little working out, but we fell into our roles pretty easily there too.
Post # 12
@danafish: I’m currently engaged and will be married towards the end of this year. My Fiance and I live with our parents and we are waiting to move in together once we are married. During our relationship Fiance has wanted to love out into his own place and have me move in with him but I did not want to. Personally, I am not against couples living together before marriage but I would prefer to experience that chapter once we’re married. I really don’t know how to explain my stance but I want to experience the “newness” of living together and waking up/falling asleep next to my husband. Fiance would counter my POV with the “speech” that it’s important to live together first before marriage to see if we get along or not. Although I understand FI’s stance, I believe that if we both are determined to be together because we love each other than we will give it our all to learn how to live each other, understand each other and make it work the best we can. Besides, Fiance and I see each other everyday (we work together, lol!) and we know each other’s pet peeves, likes, and dislikes when it comes to the duties and organization of a household.
Post # 13
We moved in together the day I turned 18! As much as I love my parents, I needed out! We have been living together ever since and we will be just shy of the 7 year mark when we get married in July. Whilst we moved in together fast, defacto and marriage are so different in my mind. We have been together so long now that a split would still be messy and would still require a divide of assets, but I still feel marriage should never be entered into lightly so I wont enter into it until I know we can work.
I am of course biased towards living together before marriage. I cannot comprehend getting married to a person you have not lived with. Marriage is LIFE LONG how can you possibly know a person well enough to marry them if you have never lived together?.. explains why its taken us 7 years ;P I really need to know if it can work! I refuse to become a statistic.
I need to know how good they are with their money (and how they are when you dont have any!), how they cope with anger/stress (ie fights, work related stress and money stress) and their expectations when sharing a house and their personal space (which In My Humble Opinion you cannot know if you dont live out of home and experience sharing chores/bills etc). Pre-marital counselling may ask these questions, but how can you answer them if you have never experienced those situations?
But like I said I am biased due to my position. Heaps of people have wonderful marriages without ever living together. As long as you do what you feel in your gut is the right choice (not the choice of those around you!) then you will be fine 🙂
Post # 14
We lived together for about a year and half before getting engaged. I was living with a group of girls and while I loved it, had I not moved in with Fiance, I would’ve moved out on my own.
The girls I lived with are devout Christians and so living together before marriage wasn’t an option and all three of them went through various types of adjustment after they moved in together. Nothing bad, but it just takes time to get used to another persons habits.
I never lived with a guy before Darling Husband and it was a mild adjustment. The hardest thing for me was sleeping in the same bed as him. I went from a soft soft bed to a pretty hard bed so most of it was the mattress but I had a full on breakdown one night after about 3 weeks on insomnia. Darling Husband woke up in the middle of the night to find me in a fetal position crying hysterically about how much I just wanted my old bed back!
Anyway, I would encourage you to live at home just from a financial stand point. Save Save Save! Plus, there is something so amazingly romantic about coming home to YOUR house for the first time after the wedding. I really missed that part of it.
Post # 15
Let me preface this by saying: I don’t think it’s a big deal either way. Some people do and some people don’t. As my Nanny said, “It’s something your generation tends to do more. I don’t find it necessary, but it’s a good thing sometimes. You learn to adjust whether it’s before or after the wedding.” <– Right on, Nanny.
Our story is that we DID live together before getting engaged. For a few years pre-engagement, actually. We moved in together for lots of different reasons, but one of the main ones was financial. We both went to the same school 2+ hours away from our families. Why pay rent at two places when we knew we’d be spending most of our time together anyhow? So that’s what we did. Our parents approved because of that reason and because my parents felt “safer” that I was living with a guy — along with many other reasons, like they loved Fiance. Lol.
We lived together for about 2 years before Fiance proposed and obviously continued to. We bought a house together while we were engaged (August of last year) and now we live in a real house together…with our 2 puppies. Lol. Sure, we learned to adjust to one another. It came with it’s own set of issues. But we did it and we’re fine, just like people that didn’t live together learn to do it.
Post # 16
We didn’t live together before getting married and I have been perfectly happy with that decision from the start. No regrets. (And yes, I was living with my parents before my husband. Interestingly, independence was one of the reasons I didn’t move in with him before we got married.)
Kala put it very well:
“I’m happy with the way we did it, and anyone who tells you that it’s harder to have a good relationship/marriage, a peaceful life, a smooth transition, or anything life that without living together first is fooling themselves. It is possible, and if you approach it in the right way it’s even easy.”
That’s exactly what we experienced. Moving in with Darling Husband was as untroubled and straightforward as the rest of my relationship with him. I can’t say that anything surprising or earth shaking showed up. I’ve lived with other people my whole life, and it wasn’t a stretch settling in with DH!
Plus, it’s made the first year of our marriage special, informative, and a kind of foundation laying. The experience of living together has become part of our being husband and wife, rather than boyfriend/girlfriend. I think the attitude is different. We’re creating a life together, not testing the waters. We make decisions about our life in the mindset of permance and long-term happiness, not like we’re trying to set up a current living arrangement that’s acceptable. (Though I feel that way about our duplex, lol! Oh, the difference between slapping paint on the walls and saving for our own place…)
You’ll be fine either way; but don’t worry, you don’t need pre-marital cohabitation to ensure your relationship! Just talk with each other, make sure you understand what they say and feel…so that you can say it and truly understand, and feel the same things and empathize. Assume that the weak/strong spots between you aren’t going to change when you live together. The relationship will always need work, love, and trust. 🙂