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You’re in love, you’re spending almost every night together yet paying rent for two separate homes. Is it the right time to move in together? The answer is: maybe, but it’s wise to be cautious about co-habitation. Here’s why.
Let’s start with some data: contrary to popular opinion, living together is not an effective way to ensure that your marriage will be strong. Statistically, couples who live together prior to marriage have a higher divorce rate than couples who do not. It turns out that “test driving” the relationship by living together doesn’t work. Here are some other reasons NOT to move in together:
One of your leases comes up and you figure you’ll save money
To save on gas – no more driving back and forth
Your other couple friends live together
You hope that by living together the engagement will follow
You like his/her home better than yours
In short, you shouldn’t move in together for reasons of convenience or money. The risk of moving in together too soon is that one of you may succumb to the Temptation to Settle for Less because it’s much harder to break up if you are co-habitating.
So what are some good reasons for living together prior to marriage – when is the right time?
Both of you see yourselves as a committed couple
Engagement is definitely in the plan, or you are already engaged
Marriage is definitely in the plan, or you have a date set
In short, moving in together can work if your relationship is very solid and you are moving down the path to marriage or some form of lifetime commitment. Otherwise, moving in together can jeopardize your relationship. Why? Because unless you are on the same page, one of you may have the secret agenda of getting the other to move forward in the relationship. This can result in conflict rather than deepening your love. Better to wait for this step until you are truly aligned – ready for marriage, excited about your future together, and planning your wedding.
Dear Nina: Is there anything wrong with dating just for the fun of dating? Yes, I understand the partner should not be misled. Generally speaking, it sounds as if you feel that if a relationship is not headed toward marriage, it should be over. – Brian Brian: People date for all kinds of reasons: For companionship, for intimacy, to look for a significant partner, and yes, for fun. There’s nothing wrong with dating for fun – it’s human nature to seek companionship in life, to enjoy being with another with no particular goal in mind. On the other side [...]
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Dear Nina: I am 34 (never married) and my boyfriend is 48 (divorced with two children). We have been together for one year. Previous to this relationship, I read “Temptations of the Single Girl” and “Be your Own Dating Service”. Knowing that It was not the right thing I slept with him after the third date. After that, I felt strongly attached to him. In your book “Be your Own Dating Service” you suggest writing a list of “Negotiables” and “Non Negotiables”. In my list I did not take into account age and children. At his moment I am concerned about our [...]
You’re in love, you’re spending almost every night together yet paying rent for two separate homes. Is it the right time to move in together? The answer is: maybe, but it’s wise to be cautious about co-habitation. Here’s why. Let’s start with some data: contrary to popular opinion, living together is not an effective way to ensure that your marriage will be strong. Statistically, couples who live together prior to marriage have a higher divorce rate than couples who do not. It turns out that “test driving” the relationship by living together doesn’t work. Here are some other reasons NOT [...]
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