Moving in together is a big step in a relationship and it’s sometimes difficult to know when it’s the right time to take that leap. While the term “shacking up,” makes it seems like it’s some kind of temporary arrangement, anyone who’s done it will tell you that it’s not so easily reversed. You’re combining your things, your food, your lives.
But living together is a great way to figure out if you can actually cohabitate with the person you’re saying you want to spend the rest of your life with. While everyone is different, there are a few sure-fire ways to know if you’re ready to move in with your significant other.
You’re ready to move in if:
You Can Agree To Disagree
Arguments, intense discussions, whatever you might call them – they still happen after you ‘shack up!’ So it is important that you and your man have the ability to bounce back after some rational discussion. Some couples revel in the argument stage and take things way too far, walking around mad at one another for days. Living together makes this especially difficult because no one gets to go home! Of course you can go take a walk for a while to cool off, but you will eventually have to come back to the home that the two of you share. And you’d better be willing to talk things out at that point, or the hostility in the house can begin to take its toll on the relationship and set a precedent for future ‘fight’ behavior. Are you going to disappear whenever things get stressful? Think about this before you move in together.
You’ve Defined Your Relationship
It’s important that you know where your relationship stands before taking the big leap of moving in together. You must have a conversation (even if you think it’s implied) about what you two are doing and if there are future plans for marriage, etc. Is this a step toward marriage? Is it a test to see if you get along together under one roof? The last thing you want is to have differing opinions on why you’re moving in together. You may think that all will be revealed organically because you’ve merged your condiment collections, but believe me, things can go sour just as fast while you’re living together as they can when you’re not. Be sure to have a sit-down where you discuss future plans.
You Already “Live Together”
If you’re already spending the majority of your days and nights together, you might have a nice taste of what it is like to live with each other. If this is the case, moving in might not be such a stretch as you’ve already been around each other for extended periods of time and you know what it’s like to go to sleep and wake up together, cook, clean, etc. Go ahead and take that leap to make it “official.” You’ve test-driven the car, so why not make the purchase?
You’re Past The Honeymoon Phase
If you’ve only been together for a month, I’m sure everything seems perfect. Let me tell you – this is not the case. Be careful with falling too head over heels and wanting to move in with a person you have not known that long – it could be disastrous. It is important to know a person before making a big commitment. You might not know this person’s idiosyncrasies, habits (good and bad), etc. yet which could lead to a very short cohabitation, and possibly even a break-up. Don’t jump the gun!
Has he seen you with no make-up on? What about in sweatpants? Fresh out of the gym? What about completely (and I mean completely) naked in the light of day? Make sure you are 100% comfortable with your man because courtesy flushing, holding in your gas until he leaves the room, etc. is going to get very old, very quick. It’s important that you feel completely comfortable and don’t have any hang-ups when it comes to the two of you letting your guard down completely. If you can be your complete self around him, you just might be able to take that next step.
You’re NOT Ready If:
• You feel pressured by anyone to make the move (boyfriend, parents, friends, etc.)
• You’re doing it for the money. If you’re merely trying to consolidate bills and pinch pennies and that’s why you’re moving in together, skip it!
• You aren’t ready. Simple as that – you may just feel like it’s not the right time and you have every right to stick by your feelings.