Post # 1
I really enjoyed reading all the comments on the post titled, “Did you learn anything major after living with your SO that you didn’t know before.”
I was hoping people would comment on whether or not they felt that anything they learned about their SO while living together was something that raised to the level of being a dealbreaker so much so that the relationship ended or didn’t make it to marriage. Most comments seemed to list habits which while annoying weren’t deal breakers. Lots of comments said they learned about habits but they loved them anyways.
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 know I wonder that myself often. So here is what I would like to hear from everyone on here. Tell us your experiences! Answer the poll question and leave a comment.
My personal suspicion is that for most, not all but most, living together before marriage doesn’t tell you that much that you couldn’t learn from sleepovers, trips away,weekends spent at each others places, and making sure you took time to ask lifestyle questions of each other etc. I suspect that for most couples the things we discover about each other when we live together are annoying habits, and general frustrations that wouldn’t in fact be dealbreakers. Hearing people’s stories I think could help a lot of us women better decide if it is worth living together first or not.
- If you lived together before marriage or an engagement and learned something that you wouldn’t have learned not living with them and it turned out to be a deal breaker and you are glad you found out by living with them, tell us what that was.
- If you lived together before marriage or an engagement and ended up getting married. While living together, did you get essential information about who that person was that you would have needed to make the decision to get married, or was it non essential information?
- If you didn’t live together before marriage, were there things you learned after you moved in together that turned out to be dealbreakers? What were they?
- If you did live together before marriage were there things about living with you that were a dealbreaker for the guy? What were those?
Post # 2
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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.
Post # 14
mimivac : You said, “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?”
You don’t hold off on moving in together to push a guy into a corner and force him to propose. I don’t think any of us weighing our options about moving in with someone are thinking that way. I think it is more along the lines of, If the guy you are seeing realizes that you have the standard of committment before moving in and he has no real intentions of marrying you or proposing it simply flushes him out of your life faster. That is actually a great thing. If the guy really does see a future and love you, he should be willing to wait till he proposes before moving in.
the comment about why would you continue seeing a person who would string you along if you lived together is also is a bit unfair to say. Women dont’ want to be stuck with a partner who is stringing them along. However, once you move in with someone and invest in them on that level it becomes a lot harder to break it off. Us women want to make sure we give enough time to make sure they really are stringing us along and not committing. Most of us give a guy too much time i think but no woman is choosing on purpose to be in a situation where she is strung along.
I think when you said, “It’s not the living together that’s the problem, it’s the guy.” I think those things can often be one and the same. We are trying to see here if living together before a committment is worth the risk or not. If most people simply learn each other’s quirks but no deal breakers emerge, than maybe its not worth moving in. If however lots of people NEED to experience living together first for some reason or another I would like to hear about it.
Post # 15
sboom : Thanks! This was really helpful. That makes sense that living with someone would help you decide more if they were the one for you or not, or at the very least cement that you are right for each other. Thanks for sharing!