I've been thinking about this recently as Justin (my boyfriend) and I hit our third year of living together as a couple. Now the jig is up and he fully knows how much I eat, how I don't like to cuddle in the morning (just want to start the day you know?), that I finish a jar of peanut butter every two days, and that his clothes aren't safe when I need something comfy to wear to bed. Roommate of the year, heyyyyyyyyy!
It's truly the BEST living with your boyfriend if you love each other. It's fun, easy, entertaining, and I'm always laughing.
If you don't love each other, what are you doing? That's like a real hell.
(Same goes for a husband or fiancee of course!)
There's a true transition period when you start living with your person. It takes time! You're now together 24/7, you're sharing your space, energy and finances, and you're making a commitment that you want to invest in each other enough to see what the future holds.
Before I thought I would "never live with someone before I got engaged", but getting engaged is the last thing on my mind right now, and especially in NYC (where we lived before) it makes SOOOO much sense from a time and money perspective.
Living together was never a 'deal' to us. Justin and I never put any thought to living together than necessary. We never made it a nervous thing, or a scary thing, and did it, because at the time it was the right decision. Living in the NOW and not the 10 years from now, was the place from which we made our decision.
If you're thinking of moving in together, or debating, just follow your gut. That's all I can say. You'll KNOW if it's right and your partner should too. Importantly, again, don't make it a bigger deal than it has to be. If it doesn't work, living together will expedite that process of finding out that this person isn't for you. See that as a good thing.
If this person is for you, then this will confirm that, and you can start to build your life!
I have learned a thing or two about living with a significant other, with a boyfriend for the past 3 years. It's different than a friend, or your family by a mile and definitely super rewarding and FUN.
You are definitely going to go through a transition period, where you're figuring out little things about one another, and adjusting to the amount of time you are spending together. It's a LOT more time, or a DIFFERENT type of time.
What I mean is, you'll see each other for a few minutes in the morning, possibly on your way to work, or you'll commute together. You'll have that time before bed, possibly every night and you'll find yourself together a lot more. As with any new roommate, you may have a rocky first few months, but let that settle and trust that you're just learning each other's habits!
Tips for living with your significant other:
Make the RIGHT time together
Basically you'll be spending more time together, as I said. Either in small increments or in large increments and this new time, will make or break you.
You'll LOVE it, or you'll begin to get sick of the person but it's essential that you make time OUTSIDE of your apartment or home to be together and be human.
It's a different vibe when you are at dinner, or with friends, doing an activity than in your sweatpants at home on the couch. Although you're spending more time together, you need to make sure to spend the RIGHT time, where you're dressed up, putting your best foot forward and taking the time to have a real conversation. I've noticed that, we have to make date nights, or take weekends away, to keep the exciting discovery period of our relationship alive. Although I cherish the nights in, relaxing and doing nothing together, I know that it keeps it spicy and sexy to do a date just us every once in a while. Setting aside time to 'date' your significant other, is KEY. This keeps romance, excitement and love alive.
I would suggest a date night, weekly, or a weekend away bi-monthly. Take turns planning, and learn or do something new that you can discuss and share in together.
Justin I do a weekend away every other month, like San Luis Obispo. Or we'll do a dinner at a place like The Nice Guy, or a low key favorite like Bareburger.
Always acknowledge the good
It's so important through the various challenges and small moments of frustration, that you acknowledge the good and love in your relationship. Every morning think, I am so lucky that I get to wake up with someone I love, that loves me back.
What more can you want in the world? What you have, is something other people would kill for! So acknowledge that. Also remember to acknowledge when your boyfriend or person does something that you appreciate it. If they clean, if they cook, if they buy groceries or cleaning supplies for the house, acknowledge that and say thank you in genuine way, to encourage more positive encounters and actions.
(I'm going to be burned at the stake for saying this, but guys are like puppies. By encouraging their good behavior, they want to do more good actions because all they really want is your love and affection, period. Also, each night, and each morning say 'thank you' to the Universe, God, whatever you're into, for giving me someone that loves and supports you! Cherish it!)
Remember that cleaning isn't THAT important
Truly! If you have someone you love in your life, that loves you unconditionally, and is GOOD to you, then seriously who cares if they clean their dishes after each meal?
I know it's a radical idea, but I think about this every time I'm a bit frustrated about the state of affairs at our home, or when I'm doing laundry and folding men's underwear and matching adidas mid-calf socks. How much Justin cleans, or how clean he is, has no reflection to how much he loves me, period. If I have love, that's all I need.
Now I'm not saying that you need to be disrespected and become a maid, but remember that it's not in a boys nature to be clean like we are. A trick that I use, is to start cleaning when he's around, and like huff and puff and sort of make it a scene, so he feels like he's helping me out by contributing. I'll say "oh thanks for helping" aka make him feel like he saved the day.
I'm insane right? But hey this psychology WORKS! TRY IT, LOL.
I seriously don't hope I sound like a biatch but I just have to tell you guys how I feel, HA.
Balance your life, and make time for friends
I'm not good at much, but I would give myself an A+ in balancing my life with a boyfriend and friends. I TRULY learned from those relationships in college or high school where you are so obsessed and you drop everything for your boyfriend, your friends give up on you because you never prioritize them, etc. etc. I make TONS of time for my friends and prioritize them equally to Justin. Justin is, my number one, but because we are good and live a healthy relationship together, I know he'll be there and at this stage in my life it's important I solidify my relationships with friends and be there for these important times in their life, like weddings and bachelorettes, or any weekends together.
Plus, it makes you WAY more interesting if your portfolio is diversified, and you have friends, do interesting shit and enjoy all aspects of your life, not just one. It allows me to share more interesting stories and maximize love in my life in general.
Keep your schedule
If you're a morning person, stick with it. If you're a night owl, make it happen.
I personally, am I morning person, I love getting up early and enjoying my time, so I want to stick with that. I don't want to fall into a habit that's not me, and stay up late, get up late if that doesn't make ME happy. Although it's an adjustment, and we get up at different times so don't have that time together, it keeps us sane, and acting as happy individuals.
Enjoy splitting finances and rent
I mean, self explanatory right? Live in that nicer one bedroom, or two bedroom because you're splitting everything baby! Some people I know get a joint credit card, and for anything needed in the house - they'll use that and split the bill each month. Also for bills too, using that is a good idea! Right now we just split with venmo, and do things one off. But it's a huge bonus with your partner!
I would LOVE to hear what works for you. Any tricks or tips or things you've learned since living with a partner?
Also, if you're still with your girlfriends or living alone, ENJOY THAT TIME! Soon you'll be with your person, ALL DAY, and you need to cherish the moments alone or with friends. It's about being where you are - and honoring that.
Just took these pictures from our day in Culver City, which as you can see as the DOPEST graffiti wall, truly my favorite. As part of our doing activities together, every once in a while I will ask that he does an activity like find graffiti with me - LOL.
Looking forward to hearing your thoughts on this and would LOVE to hear your stories! Legitimately could write a full post of funny things that happen when living together. As an example, Justin hides the peanut butter, but as I find it he makes the hiding spot more complex. He says that I'm 'adapting' whenever I make a discovery - LOL.
P.S. You guys have probably seen my fav sunglasses - these round ray ban ones. I SWEAR they are flattering on every face shape! They are quality material, and just feel super dope. I would recommend honestly to anyone. My face is ROUND but for some reason the round looks okay? Not sure but LOVE.