Post # 17
If I were in your situation, I would hold out and here’s why. You’ve already drawn your line in the sand. You already told him you weren’t comfortable moving in unless you were engaged. I think you should stick to your guns because if you give in, it’s proof to him that you’re willing to settle and that could be a recipe for disaster. And if you know there’s a chance he will drag his feet incredibly longer once you move in, well honey, I would keep enjoying your own space and keep reiterating that you need to put a ring on it if you want access 24/7.
Post # 18
Wow, thanks so much everyone! it really helps to see all different sides of the issue…
the only other thing that makes me feel a little icky about my SO’s insistence that we live together 1st before engagement (let alone before marriage) is that i feel like he is “testing” me.. like he wants to know for sure if i am going to be a good wife or something. while i guess that is kind of legit, i also think he should know that by now… otherwise, why are we still together after almost 3 years?
we have semi-lived together at different points in the past anyway… when we first started dating, he had a really bad living situation and spent most nights at my place, then about 6 months later he got his own place. after that, my lease ended and he was going to be away for work for the summer, so i sub-letted his place so that he could come home on weekends. he ended up being home most of the time anyway, so we pretty much lived together (only for about 2 months tho) until i moved into my new place.
at this point in our relationship, i don’t want to be “tested”! anyone else feel like this??
Post # 19
good point about sticking to my guns, i tend to give in fairly easily on most issues, just seems better than confrontation to me. but i think ur right, b/c its a slippery slope…
also YES if you like it then you shoulda put a ring on it haaa seems to be my anthem right now 🙂
Post # 20
Thank you, that is really great advice about setting a specific timeline.
jobs are not permanent, especially in the current economy. he could get a job, propose, marry me, then lose his job anyway… you never know! (this just happened to a close friend of his)
Post # 21
One thing that I would point out is that none of us know your relationship, you, or s/o as well as you do. In life our “gut” feelings tell us a lot about what we should do. In my situation, moving in was great for the two of us and we are happy and planning our lives with each other. But for me it felt right and I was 100% comfortable with the idea.
I will never won’t say it would or wouldn’t take him longer to propose because who really knows??? What I will say is that if feels your instincts are waving red flags, do not turn a blind eye to it. Whatever your choice, be confident with it and don’t continuously ask yourself the would’ve, could’ve, should’ve questions afterwards. I think this situation will show how supportive of your decisions he will be? I think we can tell a lot about people when they are not getting their way and how they respond to that. If you chose not to move in, note his reaction and ask is this what I can live with forever?
Post # 22
I think that your fear that he wants to test you is something to listen to. Perhaps the way he has brought up this moving in topic has indicated that he wants to “test drive” a car before he buys it and minimize risks. Sometimes guys do think like that, but it’s faulty logic. You can’t compare living together for the purpose of “test driving” a relationship to a fully committed marriage. As PP mentioned, you need that underlying marriage commitment for the tough times, because you know it’s there, you won’t back out when things get tough, but will work things out together because the foundational commitment is already there. There is a huge contrast between that and the test drive mentality. Live together to test drive the relaitonship, and you will have a critical, buyer-beware mentality with the constant thought in the background “i can back out of this at any time”. Or he will have that mentality, and you will feel like you constantly have to prove that you must perform up to standard to show that you are worthy of being a wife. A horrible situation. Also, just how much test driving is enough? A ride around the block is one thing, but some guys seem to want to put over 100,000 miles on it and even then they’re not convinced. Again, don’t put yourself in that position or receive that treatment. Just tell him you won’t compromise on this, and he will respect you for it. If it ends your relationship, well, he probably wasn’t going to be ready for marriage any time soon. If he agrees to respect you and compromise on something that is important to you, he gains your respect and shows you that he values you.
Post # 23
I wouldn’t give in completely. Let your concerns be known and firmly explain how important it is for you to be engaged. Have the timeline discussion BEFORE you live with him. I am personally kicking myself for not doing this myself. We moved in after 3 years, have lived together for over one. Now I’m getting impatient and wishing I had laid out my wishes ahead of time. I’m not saying to give him a deadline, but just a general idea of when you want to be engaged.
Post # 24
The fact that you said that it made you feel “icky” means that you really should sit down, determine your goals and then see how they mesh with his. Marriage is hard work and if you are not working toward the same goals, it can ruin the entire relationship. This is actually a really good thing, this will tell you if things are heading the way they should be, or if you really do need to take a big look at the future and see what you need to do to make sure you’re happy.
Post # 25
My BF wanted to move in together before we got engaged for his own personal sanity. He’s told me time and time again he’s a lazy slob, and he didn’t want to get married without me going into this thing with both eyes open. He was afraid that after we were married, I would wake up one morning and go, “Oh, HELL no, I can’t deal with this.” We’ve talked timelines and goals, and had an open line of communication – we will be engaged by the end of October, married in May of 2012, and hopping on the good foot and doing the bad thing a year after that.
In hindsight, I *never* would have married my ex husband had I been given the opportunity to live with him first. I feel like I’m going into this marriage with my eyes open – no surprises here. Good luck.
ETA: He’s not as bad as he made himself out to be…
Post # 26
every relationship is different so you have to do what feels right for you and your relationship. For me I am not going to buy a house with SO until we are engaged.I just feel its safer for me to have the commitment upfront.We talked about it and he agreed. You need to sit down and have a serious talk with him and make the decision together. good luck 🙂
Post # 27
Hold out and do NOT move in until after becoming engaged at the very least.
I’ve been dating my SO for almost 3 years now. A few months into the relationship, I moved in with him and I am positive that it has delayed engagement. It’s the old adage: Why would he want to buy the cow if he gets the milk for free? Do not give him free milk! Lol.
After living with my SO for about 2 and a half years and still no progress towards engagement because he “is just not ready”, I moved out 3 weeks ago and got my own apartment. We are still dating and in the time that I’ve been living apart things between us have been amazing compared to before. I can see that we are now moving towards engagement whereas before it was as if we were just standing at a crossroads with no idea where we were headed.
I’m pretty sure that if I had never moved in I would already have a ring on my finger.
Post # 28
i am in a similar situation with my BF. I know he would prefer to live together first, he’s told me directly. I know that with him (not every man, but him) me setting this boundary has sped up our timeline for getting engaged (he’s told me this directly). He’s basically said he wants to live with me and be with me, and hates driving to see each other (only 25 min drive but still)….and that if i want to be engaged first that he respects that will take the steps to make that happen.
My family is conservative, and for myself I always had in my head I’d want to be engaged first. Although I love him to death and we are at each other’s places frequently, I am happy with my decision to live seperately for now, and also feel like I’m not changing my tune just because he skipped along.
But, everyone’s situaton, age, relationship, financial situation is so different and all could change you and your SO’s thoughts on this situation. i would say hold off. but if you decide moving in feels right or is what you want to do, i’d set aome type of boundary there too. not a threat or a hissy fit, but an expectation. most good guys respect women that don’t put up with anyone’s crap or have high expectations for how they should be treated.
my good friend just moved in with her BF recently. his job could require him to move across the country or even out of the country. she basically let him know that she looked at moving in not as a “roomies/convenience” situation but a commitment that he wanted to marry her at some point, and that she wouldn’t live with him unmarried forever and that she expected they’d be engaged within around a year of moving in. especially if he would want her to possibly move to another state or country with him. they had a rational adult convo about it, agreed, and overall i think she handled it really well. a year may not be right for everyone, maybe 1.5 or 2, but it’s good to have an expectation set.
Post # 29
i think i will find myself in a similar situation come next spring. my BF says that moving in is the next step, i say engagement is (and i plan on having this conversation with him again in the next couple of days!). my family is on the conservative side, so i think moving in would seem bad to them, plus i’m terrified of being in one of those relationships forever stuck in “roomies” mode. i know i would need a very concrete idea of our future together before i’d move in. plus, i feel like we’ve spent a long enough time around each other that i already have a good idea of what living with him would be like, so i don’t feel like i need a “trial run” for marriage.
i’d say hold out; that’s my plan.
Post # 30
Like one of the PPs said, every man is different and one man’s excuse is a legitimate reason for another man. I am a case study on “the girl that moved in before engagement”. I dated my SO for almost 2 years before we dicided to move in together. Early on I told him I’d want to be engaged before ever living with a SO, but when the time came around and we made the decision to move in, it felt like the logical next step, and I didn’t think either of us was ready for engagement just yet. But I figured I would be ready soon, so I told him that we should not be living together for more than a year without having gotten engaged. And he agreed.
I will say so far, living together has been the best decision we could have made. We have learned so much more about each other, and have gotten into our own routine. We now know each other’s living habits and how they mesh. I went through a period of “can I really live with him forever?!” since it was my first time sharing my space with someone. And I’m so glad our living situation normalized while we are in a relationship…because if I decided it wasn’t going to work, I’d much rather break off a relationship than an engagement.
At the same time there is absolutley a deadline in my head for a proposal. And we actively discuss engagement and marriage fairly often. I don’t expect him to take the whole year to propose, since he says he knows I’m the one he wants to marry. But if by chance a year rolls around, there will be a SERIOUS conversation and if no legitimate concerns are brought forward, a change in living arrangements!
You can be the case study on what happens when you hold out, and we’ll compre stories! Haha
Post # 31
Very interesting and relevant topic. I’m struggling with the same thing with my SO. Obviously it’s going to vary depending on the relationship, the people involved, etc etc. I have gone back and forth on this. And not to sound simple but my advice is do what your gut tells you.
I lived with my ex first, no engagement and we were engaged WITHIN A MONTH. Yes, we’re divorced but that has nothing to do with it. Had a 14 year marriage.
However, he’s a totally different person than my current SO. Different life experiences. SO has been married (bitter, horrible marriage) before and my 1st husband had not. It’s all about where you are in your life and there are no right or wrong answers.
Do what feels right for YOU. There are no guarantees anyway. Even if you were engaged, or even married, there are NO guarantees.