Post # 47
Your family dynamics are so different that I can see where your SO is coming from. I know from personal experience that it comes as a real shock to realise just how interfering some people’s parents are and when I say “interfering”, I don’t necessarily mean that in a bad way. However, it is disconcerting to discover that your partner is still joined at the hip despite being, in theory an adult.
Your family probably do “baby” you or at least spoil you in a way that your SO finds a tad baffling if he is used to paying his way, servicing his own debts and buying his own cars. He might well be worried that if you don’t live together before marriage, he’ll be marrying a daughter, not a wife. And that’s not a great basis for a marriage!
Whether or not you want to live with him is a decision you need to make. Your parents, with respect, can like it or lump it although I would suggest putting this to them in a more tactful format! They have no right to put a spanner in the works or use emotional and moral blackmail to ensure you comply with their wishes. So if you refuse to live with him solely because of their views then I suspect you are not ready to embark on a marriage. And I suspect that your SO is equally concerned in this respect.
Post # 48
If you dont feel comfortable moving in with your S0, dont do it. But don’t blame your family or claim it’s for their benefit, you need to start making choices for yourself. It’s really hard to be torn between your SO and your family, but it’s easier if you tune them both out and ask yourself “What do I want?”. Both your family and your SO just want you to be happy, and you know best how to achieve that.
Post # 49
I’m actually not that surprised/worried that your SO changed his mind about living together. People do change their minds about big issues like this, particularly in their early-to-mid 20s as they have different experiences. Personally I was always one for co-habitating before marriage, but if I hadn’t been, some things I witnessed in my early 20s would have changed my mind.
I think at the end of the day, you have to do what’s right for YOU and take your parents’ opinions out of it. If you still think co-hab is a bad idea, and your SO is 100% for it, would that be a dealbreaker for either of you? If not, what other issues may come up down the road that you would disagree on, that WOULD be dealbreakers? THese are the things to figure out now, before you are engaged/married.
Good luck, and hopefully you find resolution to this.
Post # 50
Not gonna lie im kinda of digusted by the lack of empathy alot people of posted. I think for ALOT of you its hard to understand that family opinions matter and that taking into account your parents wishes does NOT make you immature or not ready for marriage.
Also there are just as many people who dont live together before marriage and have happy marriages as those who live together before marriage and have happy marriage. YES you do learn things by living together that you dont learn by just dating ..but just becasue you learn those things and then decide to get married doesnt mean your marriage will automatically be happy. I understand that its common in american society to believe that cohabitation before marriage = happy marriage but this is indeed FALSE.
I think one poster said that not living together before marriage is like playing russian roulette….and to that i say, GETTING MARRIED is like playing russian roulette. There is no guarentee that you marriage will be happy one.
Post # 51
Does your boyfriend not realize thaT soon he will have the same family as you? Does he really want to piss them off royally and get their backs up before you get married when that marriage is supposed to be for life? Does he still want to be the bad guy who made you corrupt your morals twenty, thirty years from now?
after four years of visiting each other at home, I think you each have a pretty good idea of what’s what. I’m sure you have had sleepovers enough to see if your partner is a blanket hog or snorer. I do think that you may end up needing to reprioritize a teensy bit, because visiting your parents and staying overnight every two weeks when you’re a newlywed and nurturing your marriage is going to make your then-husband feel like he is second or third place in your life. You need to make each other your priority within the context of your close knit family (and his family as well!)
Post # 52
I think you shouldn’t let your family enter into the discussion. Tell him that YOU don’t want to live together before marriage, and go from there.
Post # 53
I studied that phenomenon about 10 years ago. If you consider total length of union instead of total length of marriage, there was not much difference between cohabitaters and non-cohabitaters. Basically, if your relationship is damned — it’s damned if you do and damned if you don’t.
Post # 54
Wow I’ve gotten a lot of replies. So many of you have different opinions. Thanks for your advice! SO actually called me this morning and we both apologized for saying hurtful things to each other. I told him after work we’re going to have to discuss this issue more.
This is my logic. My family will really resent him and me if I move in with him before we get married and I really don’t want to deal with that. I do understand that I probably have to learn to prioritize him more and I definitely don’t plan on spending the nights at my parents house when we get married.
Also a lot of people seem to think that I am fine with the idea of living with him and I am letting my family control me. I’ve never been fine with living with someone before marrying them and I told him that as soon as I realized we were getting serious. If he had said that he wouldn’t be okay with it 3 and a half years ago I definitely would have broken up with him then, but I obviously am not going to do that now. But if I were to be honest, a huge part of my beliefs are because of my family and I might be more willing to just give in if it wasn’t for my family because I do love him. But although I am dating HIM, they are still going to be in my life forever.
Post # 55
My father was angry that I shacked up before marriage. I simply told him that he is a hypocrite because he and my mother shacked up. My father was so sure that my husband was just using me, so when my husband proposed my father had to apologize to me. Sometimes parents think they know best when they are just talking out of their asses.
I am viewed as rebellious by my sexist family because I am independent and outspoken. They think “girl children” should be naive and have no mind of their own. No thanks!
I can appreciate that your family is important to you, as well as the fact that you pay all of your own bills. However, if you are allowing your family to greatly influence your romantic choices, I can see your SO’s point about you being babied. You cannot let your family live your life for you. If they know that they can control your life choices, it will just get worse once you get married.
Perhaps you can set a timeline for being engaged? That is what my husband and I did. We were engaged within two months of living together. I would never marry a man without living with him first.
Cohabitation with a clear focus on marriage is not the same as a man getting free milk.
Post # 56
@forgetaboutme: If you want to live with your DH, just move in with him. You don’t have to tell your parents a thing. My sister moved in with her husband before they got married (they had separate bedrooms), and she didn’t tell ANYONE. I only knew because I snooped. If I ever lived with an SO before marriage (which IDK if I would), I definitely wouldn’t tell anyone except maybe my BFF.
Post # 57
I broke up with my ex because among other things he wouldn’t drop the idea of us living together before he’d even consider marrying me. I lived literally 5 houses away and spent the entire weekend and at least 1 night a week with him.
My husband totally respected my views, even though he would prefer us to live together before marrying. I ended up almost moving in with him because I didn’t feel forced, though I kept my apartment until the wedding.
Do you spend time together at one of your places or spend the night together? I’m not saying you have to, but we had the same feeling as living together even though I had my own address and that helped him. We bought groceries together, did our laundry together, etc.
Post # 58
Glad to hear that you and your boyfriend apologized for harsh words! I’m looking forward to an update after your talk.
Just wanted to say though, that if moving in together is really something that YOU do not want to do (not your family, just you) then you shouldn’t do it. If you do want live with him before marriage than I think your compromise (engaged before living together) is a good one. Just make sure you’re doing what is best for YOU, not anyone else.
Post # 59
Here is the jist of it: you shouldn’t have to compromise.
…but neither should he.
So then it comes down to what are you going to do about it? Your marriage/relationship could fail either way you do things. While I am in the camp of living together before marriage, if YOU are truly against it because of personal reasons, then don’t do it, but don’t expect him to just say ok and go along with it (I 100% fail to believe that this wa sa sudden realization for him). He isn’t any more right or wrong than you are.
You guys just need to have a serious discussion. I know you said it is a personal belief for you and not just disappointing your parents, but just reember your parents are going to love you no matter what or at least they should. My parents have given me a LOT in my life including paying for my college and wedding even though I was out on my own, had a job, and supported myself in every other aspect, but that doesn’t mean that my decisions revolve around them and what they want. They have been there for me, and I respect them, but they aren’t who I’m married to or wanted to marry.
Post # 60
Wow. OK I don’t think you’re being babied. You were raised to believe certain things and you infact believe them yourself. You were honest with him, upfront, he agreed, now why is he changing his mind? I would be leary that his mind all of a sudden has changed. Why is he suddenly throwing your family under the bus? They will be his family too, they are important to the person he loves, so why make them a negative? I would really really think about his sudden change of attitude. Good luck with the talk.
Post # 61
@forgetaboutme: I understand that you may want to make your family happy, but you’re 24 – time to make your own decisions. Do you want to live with him? Make this about what you want, not what your family wants.