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Saturday, August 30, 2014

Cohabitation: Should I live with / move in with my boyfriend / girlfriend?

Should I live with my boyfriend / girlfriend? Is it okay to live with my boyfriend / girlfriend? Is it a good idea to live together before we get married?

In the modern age in which we find ourselves there are so many new ways of maintaining a relationship. Relationships and the way they should be carried out and maintained have changed and evolved from the familiar ones we are accustomed to or that of our parents and grandparents.

The original relationship was very simple:

But now there is another variety of relationship. It may be:

or even this:

On a serious note though., many find themselves faced with the question of whether or not to move in with their partner prior to getting married or at least engaged. Our minds are flooded with thoughts like: will it change or alter our relationship? If I move in with him / her will he / she still want to marry me at a later stage? Is it a good idea at all?

There are various pros and cons to moving in with your partner many which you will already be aware of and are thus asking yourself these questions.

Advantages of living with someone before getting married

1. You get to know the 'real them' warts and all

It's a known fact that the first year of marriage is the hardest. One of the biggest reasons for this is the fact that you're getting to REALLY know each other. Once you 'tie the knot', within the first year, most of all pretenses are dropped and the real person begins to show his or her face. Often you miss a lot when not living with someone and assumed you live together for the first time when married, you then get to see all the finer details hidden within your partner.

If you live with someone before getting married, you are able to find out most of the negatives within them sooner rather than later. You cut down on 'nasty surprises' and are able to get to know the 'real them' at an earlier stage making marriage a little less shocking and a little more smooth flowing - especially that first year.

2. You can make an informed decision on whether or not to marry them

As mentioned above, you get to know the real person. This allows you to make an informed decision regarding whether or not to actually marry them. Sometimes before living with someone you may have them all wrong even though you think you have them all figured out or know them. There is a lot that might be hidden from you; a lot you could only learn while becoming ultimate 'room-mates'. By living with someone before marriage you are able to uncover these things and then decide whether or not you would still like to marry the person. This is a whole lot better then thinking you're marrying one person and finding out that they are someone completely different once you are already married.

3. You can somehow give marriage a trial run

One of the biggest parts of marriage is living together. Beside the vows and paperwork, living together is one of the most major adjustments that follow saying ' I do'. By living together before the marriage you basically allow yourself to give marriage a trial run as explained earlier. You can 'test the waters' and see whether or not you're with your ideal partner. If wedding vows and a commitment in front of God is a really big deal for you, making sure before making a life time commitment might be a good idea. It will save you having to 'tell God you've changed your mind' once you realize who your partner really is if you don't live together prior to marriage. Many also see getting a divorce as a failure or humiliating - not as many people actually really care much whether you live with someone before marriage or not.

4. No divorce hassle if it doesn't work out

Beside feeling humiliated or like a failure, getting a divorce can be emotionally straining and highly costly. By living together as a trial run, if you decide that your partner is not right for you, you can simply move out and on with your life without having to make a big costly process of it as with getting a divorce.

Disadvantages of living with someone before getting married

1. You have nothing much to look forward to

Moving in together is a big deal. It's one of the major changes which come with marriage and one of the biggest changes a married couple looks forward to after the wedding. If you're already living together getting married won't really change much for you. You'll still do exactly the same things, live with the same person, etc and thus won't be as excited about the whole process.

2. Why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free???

Many find this saying to be completely spot on. It refers to the fact that many feel that if they're doing all the things a married couple do already it's pointless in getting married. If you've always dreamt of getting married and exchanging vows, walking down the isle, that first dance, etc then you might need to think twice with regard to putting that dream at risk.

A good idea would be to address this as a concern prior to moving in with your partner if you intend on doing so. Let him or her know that you would ultimately still like to get married and put a deadline on just living together. Maybe state that you don't want to live together for more than a year without getting married. Set a deadline and stick to it.

3. Its a major inconvenience if you break up

It might be easier than getting a divorce but if you're living together and things end there is still the hassle of deciding who moves out, looking for another place to live if you move out, splitting belongings, etc. This would be in contrast to just calling it quits and moving on if you're living separately.

Making the decision to move in together is a big one to make. You need to consider everything, think about the pros and cons and then make a decision. Don't ever rush into anything or feel pressurized to do something you're not sure of.

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My Book!!! Click on the image to read the first couple of chapters online

My Book!!! Click on the image to read the first couple of chapters online
Shaylee has a secret she's been hiding from everyone... Beneath her brave exterior lies a girl bruised and scarred by life but strong enough to make it through anything. Moral of the story: Sometimes we don't find love because we don't know what to look for.