Living together or not before marriage, what was your experience?

posted 1 year ago in Relationships
  • poll: Pick one that describes your situation
    You lived together before marriage- You did find a dealbreaker from living together : (5 votes)
    5 %
    You lived together before marriage- You did not find a dealbreaker from living together : (70 votes)
    69 %
    You did not live together before marriage- You did find a dealbreaker once you moved in : (1 votes)
    1 %
    You did not live together before marriage- You did not find a dealbreaker once you moved in : (25 votes)
    25 %
  • Post # 2
    104 posts
    Blushing bee

    My husband and I did not live together before marriage. We were together 2.5 years by the time we got married. I slept over at least once a week and we took a few trips together. We definitely felt like we knew each other well enough without living together, and it made getting married that much more exciting. We learned little things, funny things, but definitely nothing major and certainly no deal breakers after we moved in together. 

    Post # 3
    1035 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: August 2019 - City, State

    We lived together before marriage. Because we saw each other in our “natural state”, I learned that he has my back 100%, no matter what, in any circumstance, no matter how terrible situation is.

    He will always be there for me, and support me. He has seen me at my ABSOLUTE worst, and helped me through it. If I didn’t know that about him, (or anyone I was with), I would not have proposed. 

    Post # 4
    1012 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: October 2017

    My husband and I did live together before marriage. All the big things I learned  were while we were long distance or traveling together. We moved in together because we wanted to and knew we would be getting engaged soon.  Neither of us saw it as a trial period to see if we were committed or compatible.   More like, we moved in together because we were committed and compatible.  I can’t think of a single thing that living together revealed that we didn’t already know about each other.

    Post # 5
    9857 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper
    • Wedding: August 2016

    My husband moved in with me about 6 months after we got engaged. So we lived together for about 7 months before the wedding. I really didn’t learn anything new about him, not even strange or unusual habits. We dated for 7 years before getting engaged (started dating at 18) so we really knew pretty much everything about each other before moving in together. Moving in together wasn’t about testing out our relationship. We already knew we wanted to get married (that’s why we were engaged!). 

    Post # 6
    2126 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: October 2018

    We lived together before marriage not to find out if there were any dealbreakers that we didn’t know about before (there weren’t), but because it was the natural progession of our relationship. We were serious enough about each other to move in.

         “There have been discussions on these boards a few times about if living together or not before  marriage is worth the risk that the guy might just be stringing you along and never propose or marry you.”

    I’m not sure why anyone would continue seeing a person who would string you along if you lived together. It’s not the living together that’s the problem, it’s the guy. Why would you want to date a guy who needs to be backed into a corner to propose and will only do it if you refuse to live with him?

    Post # 7
    1999 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: April 2018

    We lived together. We already knew we worked well together, but being together day in and day out having to deal with big and small really made it clear that we were a great team.

    No deal breakers were found. 

    Post # 8
    314 posts
    Helper bee

    So…my experience with this is a little weird but here goes.

    My boyfriend moved across the country so we could stop being long distance (from Washington DC to Michigan). He was originally renting a room from my grandmother (paying her rent each month, keeping things very clean, generally being a good renter). She had a depressive episode and kicked him out while he and I were on vacation – so he started renting from my parents. Essentially this meant we lived together – shared a bathroom, kitchen, etc – but had none of the real perks of living together (like getting ready together, sleeping together, etc). We did not plan to live together before marriage in the traditional sense (neither of us believe in it morally) and we didn’t. But we were essentially roommates for a few months. And while we didn’t find dealbreakers – my word it tested our relationship. It is very hard to put up with somebody’s housekeeping idiosyncracies without getting any of the benefits of living together (we were required by my parents to go upstairs at minimum 15 minutes apart and same for coming down. we both had to wear day clothes – no sweats or pajamas – any time we were together, etc). We defintely learned a lot about what household management would look like post marriage and that was helpful. However I do not recommend our arrangement and we are definitely experiencing less stress now that he has his own place. 

    (Bit of extra info – we’re both in our 20s and work full time)

    Post # 9
    3533 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: January 2021

    My Fiance and I have lived together for over 2 years, just over a year in the house we own together.

    We did not learn of anything major after moving in, but I still feel much more confident and comfortable in my decision to live the rest of my life with him now that I have had the experience of seeing him at his best and worst, and vice versa.

    I think you can really learn a lot about whether your partner is the right one for you whether anything major occurs or not. It’s the little things that determine whether this is the right person or not. How do the two of you cope with challenges? Bad moods? Anxiety?  Life changes? Etc… you might not have a huge blow up or learn a terrible secret about your partner after moving in, but you do learn whether your coping mechanisms and daily habits are compatible. 

    Post # 10
    2849 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: August 2018

    ladyjane123 :  We moved in before getting engaged, neither of us saw it as a “trial” like some people say. He was always over at my place since I lived alone and he had roommates, so when his lease ended he moved out and in with me. It was just the natural next step for us. There weren’t really any surprises when we moved in together.

    I lived with an ex and when we moved in together I realized I did not like being around him that much, we were fine when we spent nights together but I could go home and do my own thing, have my space but living together definitely made me realize this was not the person I wanted to share my life with forever.

    Post # 11
    389 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: July 2018

    I’ve had both experiences. A previous boyfriend talked a great game and really had me believing he was great. Then we moved in together and he was the laziest piece of crap. Never gave me his part of rent on time, never helped with utilities although he liked to be freezing in summer and warm and toasty in winter. Never helped around the house, borrowed $1200 from me and never gave me a dime of it back, pawned his kid of on me during his weekends. I got the rose colored glasses taken off really quick after moving in together. It was easy for him to hide most of that when we weren’t living together, because like I said, he talked a good game.


    My husband and I lived together before getting married. Nothing surprising or deal breaking in that experience Obviously lol

    Post # 12
    386 posts
    Helper bee

    Darling Husband and I didn’t live together before marriage. I’ve yet to find out anything new after 2 plus years! Nothing changed at all. Often I’d stay at his maybe 2 days max, we’d had a week away together on holiday but that was it. The transtion from ‘sleepovers’ to married couple with house felt natural! He was a big of a slob so often when I was round I’d clean up and do laundry, so moving in together I already knew that I’d be taking the reigns on food prep and cleaning. I’d say what peoples downfall is if their OH or themselves don’t act like their relaxed self with their OH prior to moving in, eg. house looking perfect, always being well groomed. I’d recommend letting your OH stay over at yours while you have the flu! Then you’ll see them too ill to hide any bad habits!

    Post # 13
    3096 posts
    Sugar bee

    In my first marriage, we lived together before we got engaged.  He told me that he wanted to “see how it goes” before we decide on marriage (HUGE red flag).  I can’t say that I didn’t know things about him before we moved in, but I didn’t really pay much attention or think they would affect me in the way that they did.  

    For instance, I learned quickly that he hated getting rid of stuff.  Hated.  It became a problem because he also loved to buy new things, but refused to get rid of the old.  I had to convince him that we didn’t need 3 full sets of dishes for our 850 sq ft condo.  We ended up having to get a storage unit because he had boxes and boxes of old magazines (like Maxim and FHM…not collectors stuff) and weird shit that had some sentimentality to him.  I didn’t make him get rid of it, but we couldn’t fit it in our condo.  I hate clutter and he thrived on it.  

    But this takes me into the next really big issue that came up.   When I met him, he was in sales.  So he got his base salary paycheck once a month and then his commission check for the other one.  When we were still dating and he had roommates, there were a couple times that he needed to have his roommate cover his rent until the commission check came in.  I should have seen this red flag and ran for the hills, but of course I didn’t think much of it because of the sales thing.  Oh boy was I wrong.   And remember how I said that he likes to buy new things?  Well it was a huge issue and he hid some major debt from me.  Like 5 figure debt and it was the nail in the coffin of many other things.

    But with my fiance it was different because we moved in together after we had bought the ring and had already talked about our future and knew we were on the same page with everything.  Also, previous to that, I paid very close attention to how he kept his house and how he felt about his material possessions and knew we were very similar in those respects.  He went from a 2800 sq ft house and moved into my 850 sq ft condo.  He downgraded in the biggest way and i knew we were very compatible with the way we lived.  And he is older and both of his kids are done with college and on their own and his finances are in order.  

    The moral to my story is that you do not need to live with someone to figure out if you are compatible enough.  The writing is on the wall, you just need to pay attention and not brush it off.  I knew my exH was a slob, but I made myself think it wasn’t a big deal.  I knew he was terrible with money, but I brushed it off saying that it was due to outside influences.  


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