Post # 16
I think this is just another illustration of the “why by the cow” analogy… if you’re with a partner who is not on the same page as you when it comes to marriage, kids, timelines, committment, etc, it won’t matter if you live together or not.
It does break my heart, though, as I’ve seen SO many of my female friends cohabitate with guys they’re not 100% about because it’s easier (and way cheaper here in NYC!) It always ends poorly witheither late-night cab rides to a girlfriend’s house with an overnight bag and then frantic apartment searches the next day or (even worse) staying in a relationship for YEARS that is going nowhere.
All of these types of articles point to the same thing- if someone is NOT planning the same future you are, no matter of living together, couples counseling, withholding or giving sex or engagement chicken recipes are going to change their mind.
I say all this as someone who got a new apt with DH 3 months after we started dating (we were married 18 months later.) Our biggest issue is arguing over who will empty the dishwasher, so it’s not all bad 😉
Post # 17
I’ve always been a great believer in living with someone before you’d ever consider marriage to them but the article (which I think is very thought provoking) does make a very good point about the ease you can slide into cohabitation when compared to marriage. What it doesn’t do is suggest cohabitation is wrong per se.
I think the writer makes some very valid points. Because living together can often be the logical thing to do. If you are are happily in a serious relationship which has evolved into spending most nights together – in either your house or his – then it can make absolute commonsense to get a property together. You’ll save money and get to spend the time you are already spending together in a much more convenient location!
However, I think most couples would probably use a different language to discuss whether they want to get married. “Commonsense and convenience” might enter into the debate but are unlikely to add up to the sum total of the decision. And yes, by the time you have combined homes, finance, pets and possessions, getting out of the relationship is no easier than getting out of a marriage. Worse, there can be nothing more dispiriting than discovering that only one of you had expectations that living together would lead to marriage.
I know that in our case (in our 40s at the time and having previous marriages and teenage children) we didn’t hurry into living together precisely because we treated cohabitation as a permanent commitment and we wanted to be absolutely sure this was what was right for us.
We didn’t want to get married again at that point but we would revisit the whole issue of marriage over the years. It worked just fine for us because we were on the same page and there was never a circumstance where one of us was hoping or waiting for a proposal and the other hoping that the whole topic of marriage would never come up!
So while I’m a huge fan of co-habitation, the decision to live together has to come after a very clear understanding of where each of you thinks the relationship is going. Sliding into a live-in relationship can come with real risks and that’s the point, as I read it, of the article.
Post # 18
oh man have I seen that too- sobbing girls sleeping on my couch who gave up their leases for a guy not really committed to them. Dumped and homless?? Heartbreak. It took one of my ladies a year to get back on her feet. Literally a year: she had to move back in with mom and dad and find a new job that she lost during her heartbreak/homeless time.
all the while shed look around at our old apartment crying “why didn’t I just stay?”
Post # 19
I have been living with my SO for almost a year and a half, but we talked very seriously about moving intogether. It wasn’t a decision based upon it being a cheaper option. We set a timeline: date for over a year, then live together for a year or so, then engagement, then marriage. My SO and I agreed (we talked about this article before he left for work) that we would not have moved intogether unless we thought we would be getting married. I think couples do not take living together as seriously as they should. I understand the point in this article, so I am happy to say that my SO and I talked about living together a lot before making the decision rather than it just happening because it was easier than living apart.
Post # 20
god I’ve seen that too. A friend of mine moved back in with her parents and was barely employed after moving out of her BFs house- she was so depressed it took a village to get her moving again.
As an aside, I DO think it’s a good idea to get a NEW place with a partner (unless they own their place, obv) versus moving in with them. DH and I talked about me moving into his old apt, but we both decided it would be better to start fresh and I’m really glad that we did. Apartment hunting was fun and stressful and was a great first-step towards our “big kid” relationship. Nothing like forking over $7k to get into a one bedroom apartment to really bond with your partner 😉 Seriously though, I don’t think I would have ever really felt comfortable in “his” apartment.
Post # 21
We moved in together before we were engaged/married. He originally didn’t want to do it until we were married but sometimes you really don’t know someone’s true personality until you live with them. I have friends who have done both and found out that they just weren’t compatible with each other. We have been living together for almost 3 years now and the wedding is less than 50 days away and so far it’s working out nicely for us.
Post # 22
ugh I feel like that too but I had to get over it in my case (took awhile to get there). He owns his lovely spot- mortgage for his 2 bedroom is just a little over my rent for my one bedroom. It’s an amazing deal/location, gorgeous custom closets/kitchen. im settling for a new bed and symbolic redecorating.
Post # 23
I totally agree with RedHeadKel, men who have children and are living together with the mother of his child probably won’t see a reason to commit through marriage unless the reason is external, e.g it’s what his girlfriend really wants.
I know a man that’s been with his girlfriend for over 5 years and they now live together, and he says marriage isn’t important and they don’t need to get married as they live together!
Post # 24
I think the problem is that once you move in together, you will not be able to date or spend time with other people at all and there simply will not be many other options because, let’s face it, decent guys will probably not pursue women who are living with someone. I think this ties into the phenomenon that I have seen on these boards, i.e very young women worrying that at 25-30, they will never meet anyone else.
Post # 25
I have seen this too…living together and kids…the man refuses to propose or marry. No matter how much the woman wants it the life the two have created means she isn’t going anywhere, nso marriage is all decided by the guy.
I am happy my husband didn’t need a trial run with me or we were in a financial situation that cohabitating was the only answer. I am firmly against living together. Be independent until marriage! There were no ifs ands or buts about it…marriage was the way to start our life together.
Post # 26
We moved in together after 6 months, and though we seriously discussed marriage, we didn’t get engaged for another 3 years. We have been married for a year and a half and are as happy as can be– different things work for different people. As long as you are on the same page to start with, there is little room for disappointment and confusion. Much as I’d never have married someone without sleeping with them first, I’d never marry someone without knowing what kind of roommate and housekeeper they are. IMO, It’s important to know these things in advance, rather than figuring it our after you make the lifelong commitment.
Post # 27
eh. I also see stories on here of women who discover a terrible habit the SO has once they marry and move in with their spouse. I find myself thinking that they would have been prepared if they lived together.
Post # 28
Yes I agree with this, before I joined this site I’d never heard of not moving in before marriage but it makes sense.
I moved in after 6 months of being together and being at his house every day so I felt like it was my home anyway.
A year and a half later we’ve talked about becoming engaged and he’s said it might be within the next year, and I’ve told him I don’t want to have children out of wedlock.
Some might see that as controlling that I won’t become pregnant until after the commitment of marriage but I think it’s the right thing to do.
Post # 29
I agree with many PPs in that the article isn’t necessarily anti-cohabitation. If anything, it argues that moving in with a partner should be a decision accompanied by agreement on where the relationship is heading, as opposed to a more apathetic decision to save money or because you already sleep over all the time.<br /><br />As for my personal experiences and opinions? Even though DBF and I have been together for nearly two years, we haven’t lived together yet. For that matter, because we met in high school and still live with our parents, we haven’t even spent the night in one bed yet. But due to our beliefs, we know we’ll want to live together before we marry. We both think that living with someone gives you much more insight than living apart would, and you need all the information you can get before making a major decision like marriage. While DBF and I aren’t sure whether engagement will fall before or after we move in together, it should happen around that time.<br /><br />Overall, I think that living with someone you’re in love with should be taken more seriously than living with roommates is.
Post # 30
The article is saying nothing necessarily against living together before marriage. It is just presenting data on the downsides of not being on the same page before moving in together. Not all relationships that “slid” into cohabiting are doomed; the couples could be on the same page and merely not articulare themselves. However, it is much more likely for a couple that slid into cohabitating to fall victim to pressures, social and otherwise, to make committments they did not discuss or agree to. In this sense, absolutely. Sliding into cohabitation and marriage can
be a recipe for disaster.
Moral of the story: talk to your partners beforehand, it will help in the long run!