Unless you and your soon-to-be already live together, chances are good that moving in with the new hubby will carry its fair share of surprises and compromises. Before taking the plunge, you obviously need to discuss where the two of you will be living: his place, yours or a new one altogether. Finding a place to live and moving come with their own sets of challenges, so make the decision far enough ahead of the wedding to avoid stress.
If you’ve spent a good amount of time with each other before you plan to start living together, you should think about the quirks your partner has that you have noticed in the course of your relationship. It’s a good idea to get together and discuss what pet peeves irritate you both (remember that you’re not perfect either!) and to make a commitment to one another to work on them.
Sometimes though, your partner doesn’t always remember to put the cap back on the toothpaste. There has to be some acceptance of the idiosyncrasies if sharing a home is going to work. If you both maintain an open and understanding dialogue about pet peeves and don’t fall into nagging each other about them, it makes for a much better and loving home. When you truly love your partner enough, these small quirks and pet peeves become irrelevant over time or even something to laugh about.
Give Me Some Space!
Even though you are going to be living together, that doesn’t mean you can’t have your own private space and some time to yourself. Many people (especially men) are afraid that they won’t be able to do things like play videogames or watch football alone after all the boxes are unpacked. This is a valid concern and one that must be addressed quickly. You both need a little spot to call your own where you can go off and do your own hobbies or pursue your own interests so you don’t grow tired of constantly being around the love of your life.
Ideally, you should each have your own room to decorate however you want. A second bedroom, a basement or a garage are all places that can become good personal zones where quality time can be spent away from your partner. When space is limited, a room that’s split by a privacy screen could suffice in a pinch.
Bills, Bills, Bills
One of the biggest fuels for arguments in a relationship is money. Now that you’re living with your spouse or significant other, arguments over money matters can get heated to a nuclear meltdown faster than you can say Chernobyl. Make sure the two of you work together to come up with a plan of how your finances will be handled. Some financial experts recommend not combining your checking accounts or getting a joint checking account when you first begin living together, but that choice is really up to you. Either way, you must figure out who is going to be responsible for paying the bills, or how the bill paying duties are going to be separated.
In addition to keeping an open and honest dialog, consider space constraints and your differences in decorative style prior to moving day. Pitch junk, donate nicer items to charity or hold a potentially lucrative garage sale. Be prepared for an adjustment. Once you’re living together there are certain parts of your relationship that will naturally change.
Figure out both of your expectations regarding cleanliness. And if they’re different, come up with a compromise you both can live with. When living together, consideration must be taken for how the regular household maintenance will be handled. The best way to go about this is by splitting up the chores. If you are particular about how the laundry is done, then you could take that task while your partner could be put in charge of dishes or something else they don’t mind doing as much. Another way to handle this situation is to trade off chores—you vacuum one time and your partner takes it up the next. An even better option is to make the chores a shared experience. By doing the dishes or doing the laundry with your partner, a sense of teamwork and accomplishment can add a rich dimension to the relationship
Living together is a big step, so before you start packing or making room in your dresser, talk about these issues. Remember, living together is also fun!