Moving in Together
Moving in together is a big step in any relationship. It can be a strong sign of commitment but can also change the dynamics of the relationship. Don’t rush into anything and don’t expect to live happily ever after. Seeing so much of your partner can be great but can also lead to new problems in your relationship.
Making the MoveThere is no easy formula to decide when you should move in with your partner. Some couples live together after a few months while others may wait until they get married. Whenever you decide to do needs to be right for you. Don’t let your partner pressurise you into the idea as this will only make life a lot more difficult for you later on. It is also not a good idea to rush into living together. Take time first to get to know each other properly. Spend a lot of time at each other’s so you know what they are like to live with and have an idea if you could make it work.
Your Place Or Mine?If you have decided that you want to move in with each other then the next step is to decide where you are going to live. If one of you is going to move into the other person’s house then you need to make an effort to make it a shared space. The person whose place it is will already have it set up to their tastes and have things the way they like it. A new partner moving into this needs to be allowed to put their own touches to it so it feels like they live there and are not just lodging. The easiest way to make a joint home is to move somewhere new together. Then you have a blank canvas with no old memories, that you make into your own as a couple.
Practical IssuesYou may be madly in love and want to spend every minute together but it you are going to move in with each other then you are going to have to discuss the unromantic subject of money. Who will pay the rent/mortgage? Who is responsible for bills? Will you have a joint account? Should you both contribute the same amount? It is never easy to talk about money and you may be surprised to find your partner has different views on the topic to you. You need to communicate well to make your relationship work and money is one of the most contentious issues you will have to deal with. Be fair, practical, and work out a system that works for both of you.
Building BoundariesYou may always try to look your best for your partner and be funny and entertaining all the time, but when you move in together that’s not really possible. You need to let your partner see the real you, warts and all. This can be difficult to deal with from both sides. Firstly you may be concerned about letting go and becoming less attractive to your partner. At the same time, when your partner leaves their socks all over the lounge, doesn’t wash up, or lounges around in their pyjamas all say the romance can quickly fade. You need to communicate and set boundaries that you are both comfortable with such as not having shared bathroom time. You also need to work hard to keep a bit of mystique going and not let your usual Saturday night dates degenerate into a takeaway and DVD on the sofa every week.
If you feel ready to move in together then be ready for hard work, broken expectations and arguments. At the same time waking up to your partner every morning and sharing the intimacies of everyday life will make you stronger and closer.