Did you live with significant other before marriage?

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by silverspoon65, Jan 15, 2009.

  1. silverspoon65

    silverspoon65 Enthusiast

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    Jan 15, 2009

    This came up in another thread - were you married or engaged before you moved in with your SO? Any opinions on the matter?

    My BF and I are moving in with each other this summer after dating for 2 years (will be 2 and a half by the time I move). This involves significant upheaval for me... getting certs in another state which means Praxis tests I didn't take before, new background check, giving up a good rep and dept chair position where I am now.

    People ask us a lot when we are going to get engaged, and we always look at them like they are crazy. No WAY would we do that without living together first. But we have talked about marriage and have agreed that the ring will probably come after we have lived together a little while and know we can still tolerate each other. haha.

    If he lived in the same town as me, the situation might be a little different. I might not be in such a rush to move in because I could see him whenever I wanted. Right now we can only do weekends.

    Any thoughts/analysis of your own situations?
     
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  3. Teacher_Lyn

    Teacher_Lyn Companion

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    I think it's a great idea to LIVE with the person BEFORE marrying them because you really learn a lot by sharing a space with someone 24/7. Unfortunately, when I lived with my SO (we were together for five years. met in college and even lived in the same apartment complex next door to each other for a year), we only lasted three months before the wedding and our entire relationship was called off.

    My recommendation would be to go counseling even if you're not thinking of gettting engaged. AND be up front about EVERYTHING. Part of our issue was finances -- he told me the Army was going to cover the mortgage for a house he bought, then when I got there, it turns out that wasn't true and ALL his paycheck went to pay the mortgage and my tiny, summer teacher stipend was being used to cover everything else (food, the dog, gas, recreation, uniforms for his job, car maintenence, phone bill, gas bill, etc).

    When we agreed to move in together, he said the mortgage would be $1,000, but the army gave him a $800 housing stipend, so he'd only be paying $300 a month for the house, which was nothing since his paycheck was $1,500 PLUS $700 each month just for housing.

    Turns out the $700 is included in the $1,800, so we were screwed. OH! And he had a $20,000 in student loans and close to $10,000 in credit card debt that I never knew about, so the rest of his check went toward paying those off.

    Also, I hope you guys aren't moving to a new area and will still be near a good support network of family and/or friends. My SO and I moved to a new state where we only knew each other and I was struggling to find a job, so that caused a lot of tension with me being home by myself all day cooking and cleaning (he's Army and used to leave the house at 4 a.m. and wouldn't get home until 7 or 8 p.m. each night. Then he'd go right to bed. Weekends he would sleep until almost 3 or 4 p.m.)

    So, I was very lonely and felt isolated.
     
  4. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    We had a LONG engagement (a little over two years) while we both finished school. I finished a year ahead of my husband so I moved here while he was still in his program. I was always told that if you could stand your SO for all four seasons, you were in good shape. Winter was a little dicey but we still married the next summer.
     
  5. Crzy_ArtTeacher

    Crzy_ArtTeacher Comrade

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    My SO and I bought a house together and are unmarried. I could care less about the marriage before living together. We lived back and forth with each other for a good 6 months before finding a place.
     
  6. AMK

    AMK Aficionado

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    My boyfriend and I already said we wouldn't live together until we were engaged.
     
  7. FutureFLTeacher

    FutureFLTeacher Companion

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    My hubby and I lived together before getting married...and honestly, I think anyone who doesn't live with their future spouse prior to getting married is in for one heck of a shock! Living with someone shows a completely different side of them than merely spending a few hours every couple of days with them. Like Lyn said, sharing space 24/7 puts a new perspective on someone! Good luck to you! :)
     
  8. ku_alum

    ku_alum Aficionado

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    My DH and I lived together for about a year and a half before we got married.
     
  9. Artteach42

    Artteach42 Rookie

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    My husband and I didnt live together until we were married. We did everything very traditional. I mean EVERYTHING. It was hard not being able to be together for an entire night until we were married. I feel it made us much closer when we did purchase a house and move in. I can see the positive side of living together before marriage, but we decided to go about it differently. However, if you truly love someone and were meant to be together forever, it wont matter how you approach it.
     
  10. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    DH and I lived together for a year before becoming engaged. We had only been together for a year before moving in together. Everything worked out for us! Been together 10 years this year, married for 7 years.
     
  11. FutureFLTeacher

    FutureFLTeacher Companion

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    You sound a great deal like my hubby and myself! We dated for five months, were engaged for a year and got married...that was almost 11 years ago! We'll be together 12 years and married 11 this year...:)And we couldn't be happier!

    My theory with getting engaged/living together, etc. is to each their own, whatever situation works best for the individuals involved is the way they should go...:thumb:
     
  12. Teacher2Be123

    Teacher2Be123 Companion

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    Me and my SO have been living together since April of last year. We are in the process of moving into a bigger apartment. We will be together 2 years in March. I think its a good idea to live with them first because things are different when you are around each other 24/7.
     
  13. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    My mom has told me that if she could do things over, she would have lived with my dad before marrying him. That being said, August is their 40th anniversary and they're still having fun.
     
  14. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    cat-my mom said the same thing about her first husband. They ended up divorcing, but not before they had my sister so I'm thankful for that.
     
  15. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    Here is old Dave asking a irreverent question......
    Why are you the one moving? Why not him?...... just wondering.


    As for living with your SO if you can do it with out causing a problem (you have a date and a ring) go ahead, what am I to stop it, It is the trend.
    I look on it as: if it is within a short time you are getting married it makes sense
    but if it is "we're getting married sometime" I say no
     
  16. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Maven

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    No, we did not live together before getting married. It's just a choice that we made. I certainly don't look down on people who choose to live together. It's just not something I would do.

    I know that some people are of the idea that they want to "live together to see if it will work", while others are of the idea that they want to "get married and make it work".
     
  17. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    DH and I must be an exception to that study because we did get married, and there is no divorce in sight. His brother who got married a few months before us, was divorced from his wife 3 years after marrying. They did not live together/sleep together until after they got married. My point is, its not necessarily about whether or not you live together before marriage or not, but about the people in the relationship. Whose to say those that lived together who didn't marry, wouldn't have married each other anyway?

    I will say that DH was the first and last.
     
  18. GlendaLL

    GlendaLL Aficionado

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    I agree.

    I didn't live with either of the men that I married.
    The first marriage lasted less than two years.
    The second marriage has lasted 24 years - and is going strong.
     
  19. MuggleBug

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    We had planned on it and lived together for about 2 months but things changed - he got a transfer back to CT and I moved back at the beginning of a school year to work up here. I'll probably stay home with my parents until our wedding just to save money. It was just the way things worked out - otherwise we probably would've lived together for about a year before the wedding. It will be hard and an adjustment but we will try our absolute hardest to make it work.
     
  20. GoldenPoppy

    GoldenPoppy Habitué

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    DH and I lived together for 19 years before we were married. We've been married now for 11 years.

    Everyone always asks why it took so long to get married. We finally just decided that it was time.
     
  21. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

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    I live with my boyfriend right now. We've been living together since November. I never wanted to live with my SO until I was married, but it just makes so much more sense financially. We're doing well, and nothing has been a big surprise. I spent enough time at his apartment to know what it would be like to live with him.
     
  22. ecsmom

    ecsmom Habitué

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    We didn't live together before we were married. We did spend a lot of time together. We took a couple of trips together as well.
    We have been married for 25 years.

    My parents never lived together before they were married and didn't live together for 5 months after they were married because they couldn't afford a place of their own. They have been married for 47 years.

    Marriage is work. I guess about 50% of the couples who get married aren't willing to work that hard. ( I wonder what percent of divorced couples lived together first.) It would certainly be easier to live together and split up rather than get married decide to get a divorce.
     
  23. Jem

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    I met my dh online, and he was about an hour and a half away. We only saw each other on the weekends, so I would just drive up Friday evening and stay until Sunday evening. That caused huge problems with my mom, as I was living at home. But it was just too far to drive back and forth. We were engaged within 8 months, and then got married about 8 months after that. That's when we moved in together, in between our two work cities. We just knew it would work from those weekends. Our living styles are total opposites-he is a neat freak and I'm a total mess. He is a minimalist and I'm a hoarder. He's super modern and I'm extremely whimsical. We've had to compromise on everything, but it's totally ok. I think if we had lived together full time before getting married that it may have been easier to just go our separate ways, because compromise is HARD! But it's also fun, and we know it's just us for the rest of our lives. Divorce isn't an option for either of us, so we just make it work.
     
  24. MsBee

    MsBee Devotee

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    I lived with my BF for about 3 years. We are not married but I think you should live together before marriage.
    My younger sister is dating a LOSER!!!!!!!
    She had sex with him once and got pregnant. He has not worked since the baby has been here (almost 3 years) and my sister works and pays for everything. This is her first boyfriend so she is all in Love and believes every word he says.
    Well they just got an apartment together a few months ago and at first me and my mom were upset but now its like a blessing in disguise. We are hoping she finds out that he is nothing but a loser once she spends 24/7 with him.
    BTW...she works a full time job and he does...well....NOTHING.
     
  25. JaimeMarie

    JaimeMarie Moderator

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    We have lived together for about five years. Three the first time before I got a job 4.5 hours away and now two more. Wedding is in July of this year.
     
  26. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Nope. Color me old fashioned.
     
  27. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    Well said
     
  28. DHE

    DHE Connoisseur

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    Well I lived with my DH for a while when we dated in the mid 80's then after being apart for 17 yrs we got back together. I would not consider moving in or anything else until we were married. Even when he helped me move into my house, he could not stay at my house. He stayed two nights, first night he stayed in the new house that I had not moved in. Next night he stayed in the house that I moved out of.:D:D
     
  29. chemteach55

    chemteach55 Connoisseur

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    No--we did not live together before we were married. First, my mom and his mom would have killed us and second, we never even really thought about it. We dated for a year and then were engaged for a year. He lived at home and I lived in a sorority house and he was not even allowed to come upstairs to my room. We have been married for 22 years so I guess we have learned to live with each other.
     
  30. DallasTeacher

    DallasTeacher Companion

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    Amen! Unfortunately, the statistics on not on the side of living together and getting married or living together and staying married. It's too easy for one party to walk away and that seems to happen in many cases. There is no way I would recommend someone leaving a great job to go "shack up" with someone. There's no commitment or even promise of one.
     
  31. Mamacita

    Mamacita Aficionado

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    No. My reasons will not matter to most people here, so I'll just stick with "No." We waited.
     
  32. teach1983

    teach1983 Rookie

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    My boyfriend and I have been together for almost four years; we hope to get married in October *fingers crossed*...unfortunately, most of it has been long distance, but I think it's a great idea to live with your significant other before marriage. It gives you the chance to really get to know each other through everyday activities. You can see each others habits, flaws, etc. :)
     
  33. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

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    When I was 20, I was in a long term relationship and wanted to live with him. I am now glad I didn't.

    I wouldn't live with someone until I was at least engaged. I'd like to wait until after the wedding, but financially, I'd love it to live with someone. But, who knows. I am single right now...
     
  34. terptoteacher

    terptoteacher Connoisseur

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    Nope, we didn't live together first. I thought for sure my parents would have a cow and forbid it.
    We dated for 3 years and have been married for 20.

    I found out at my dad's funeral last year that my parents lived together for one year before they were married because it was illegal for them to get married in Louisianna where my mother is from. (my father was Asian and my mother isn't)
     
  35. MissWull

    MissWull Cohort

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    Back when my husband and I were dating, we moved in together after 2 years of dating, we were engaged after 6 months of living together, and married 2 1/2 years later. No reason for the time lines we just went at our own pace.

    I see no problem with moving in before being married or even engaged. Like most people here said, it's nice to give it a "trial run". Although my husband and I already knew we wanted to get engaged...we were fine living together. It actually wasn't much of a trial run before we moved in because he basically lived at my house anyway...haha. So I knew all of his habits, nothing came as a surprise to me! :)
     
  36. silverspoon65

    silverspoon65 Enthusiast

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    He looked for jobs here for awhile because where I live now is more in between our families and friends. But all of the computer jobs were in banks - ING, AIG, not where he wants to be working right now... Plus, he works for the state and has amazing benefits and a pension and good salary, all of which is rare in his field. We figured where ever I got a teaching job, I would have a pension and good benefits. Plus, in the position he is in now, he will be able to support while I go back to school in a few years. :) And I want to go to UPenn, so moving to PA would make sense for that, too.
     
  37. cMcD

    cMcD Groupie

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    My boyfriend and I have been together for over 3 years. We moved in together over a year ago. I will say that the first couple months were rough. I got mad because he wouldn't take the trash out right when I asked him to, he would wait a couple days to wash the dishes, etc. But, I realized that he's a guy and guys are a different breed... :)

    I fully believe in living with your SO before getting married and/or engaged. We're not engaged, and we probably won't be for a while. I'm in no hurry. He's not either. The only one that's in a hurry is his mom so she can have grandchildren. (Let's not get into that...) :) We know what we are, and where we're going with this.

    My advice is to expect things to be rough at first. You're getting used to each others habits. Give him space... and you'll need yours.
     
  38. hdb2008

    hdb2008 Rookie

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    No, we didn't live together. We made the decisions that were best for the two of us. These decisions (I think) has helped make our marriage successful. I am not saying that it wasn't hard. DH had to realize that I wasn't going to come behind him and pick up everything after him.....especially when he didn't have any underwear one day because they didn't make it in the hamper.

    Looking back there is still no way that we would have lived together before our marriage.
     
  39. raneydae

    raneydae Companion

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    Ultimately, in the end, to each his own. However, since this is the topic of this thread, here's my personal opinion (I'm not trying to step on any toes or pass any judgment on anyone):

    Being married if difficult (and awesome) and requires a lot of compromise. If you really understand what you're getting into in a marriage and are ready to make a commitment to another person for better or worse, I don't see why you'd need to "pretend" being married first to try it out. Either you've chosen a person who's willing to make a marriage work with you, or you haven't. You can usually tell what kind of person someone is without having to live with them.

    Some of the "fun" of being a newlywed is learning to live with each other, and the closeness you have to develop to make your lives work. Living together before you've committed to making it work - no matter how annoying you might discover little habits are - seems so much more stressful to me. Because when you've already committed, you know you're willing to compromise on your differences, but while you're "testing it out", all of your differences become potential deal-breakers.

    Or maybe I too am just old-fashioned and traditional.

    With all this said though, DH and I did "live together" for exactly one month before the wedding. I don't think we would have otherwise, but the way the two leases began and ended, it made the most sense at the time. We did stay overnight at each other's places a couple times a week as well, but we never officially moved in together until a month before the wedding.

    We're both 28 (which is rather young in this part of the country), been married 3 years, and have no thoughts of ever divorcing. :)
     
  40. Ms. I

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    Call me old-fashioned, but I don't want to live w/ someone before getting married & I'm glad my BF agrees. It's because of the old "why buy the cow when you can buy the milk for free." I still think if a couple lives together, the chances of them getting married dwindles. Plus, I don't want to be that involved w/ someone (especially financially) if I'm not even married yet. I'm the type of person who still considers that piece of paper VERY IMPORTANT, unlike others who think that they don't need a piece of paper to show their commitment.
     
  41. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    :bdaysong:
     

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