Thursday, September 4, 2014

Lesson 9: Why We Didn't Live Together Before Marriage - Part 1

In case you're new here, I've been doing a marriage series about what makes our marriage work. You can find other posts here. Go check them out.

Today it's all about why Mr. and I chose not to live together before marriage. Although it would have been way more convenient. I told you guys in the First Marriage Lesson that we didn't live together, and now here are the reasons why.

When we went to our Engaged Encounter there were approximately 50 couples, and we were one of the only couples that didn't live together. It's definitely not the norm but it worked for us. Actually my roommate who said she was going to stay until we got married and take over the apartment with her sister, moved out unexpectedly (a story to be told at another time) and left me with the all the bills. So Mr. had to help me out there, he had a roommate and used his roommates rent money to help me pay my rent. It was a crazy time, let me tell ya! Anyway I digress.

Before we even met we had never lived with anyone, and if we had been living with someone, we never would have gotten together. Yes we were both dating people, and we have both said that had we been living with someone we probably wouldn't have gotten together. But because we weren't living with those people, it was easy to break up with them. That being said both of us were near the end of those relationships. I was close to breaking up with my then boyfriend, but just couldn't pull the plug, he was a great guy and we had talked marriage, I loved him very much but our views on important things just were too different, i.e. how to raise children and I couldn't get past it. We had talked about it since we started dating, especially religion, and I thought we could get past it, but a year later were still having the same discussions.

I wasn't sure of the exact statistics and if you look it up, there are varying statistics, but Dr. Phil has a bunch of statistics, and frankly there are a little confusing, but I feel that people who live together who are just "testing" the waters to see if you are compatible are somewhere deep down not fully committed. Meaning deep down you know you can just walk away at any time. And I really do think that thought goes into the marriage too. You get married, but your living arrangement is still the same, you go home after the wedding to the same place you always have, so if that hasn't changed, why all of a sudden is that feeling of I can just walk away (whether it be conscious or subconscious) go away too? I do not think this applies to people who are engaged already who then move in together, although I would not do that, and didn't, as it would have been really easy to move in with Mr. when my roommate wanted the apartment and tried to kick me out. I do not think that moving in together should be taken lightly, and just because you are going to save money by living together, or you're always sleeping over at each others places is a good reason to move in together. Think about the future, can you see yourself living with this person the rest of your life? If the answer is yes, then why aren't you proposing, getting engaged, talking about marriage, moving on with the relationship? What is moving in together getting you?

If you answered, well I want to know if I am compatible with them. If you're compatible in every other way, does how he folds his socks really going to change your mind? If you have an absolute deal breaker, that you cannot and will not live with someone who does.....(fill in the blank), well then just ask them. Everything you do in marriage is compromise, when you start living together you find out the little things about the person that bother you. Case in point, Mr. didn't know I don't like putting things away when I know I'm going to use it the next night. This drove him crazy, and for the first couple months of marriage he went around and cleaned up after me. But then when it boiled down to it, he decided that it wasn't worth it for him to constantly clean up after me, and he decided that it wasn't going to bother him. Had it bothered him, we would have had a discussion about it, and I would have compromised. Things like that, aren't going to be marriage deal breakers, you talk about it and move on. If you can't talk about things that bother each other before then moving in together, moving in together isn't going to change that.

I have more on this topic, but will save for another day.


  1. We didn't live together either and I am right there with you. If we were ready to live together, then we were ready to get married!

  2. we moved in together long before getting engaged. It had little to do with money and more to do with wanting to spend time together. I don't regret the decision and I think we both learned a lot about each other by living together that we wouldn't have otherwise. Having said that, my brother and his wife didn't live together prior to getting married and it worked well for them. It's one of those things that's super personal. I couldn't not see how someone lived prior to making a life-long commitment, but that's just me and that's certainly not the same for everyone.

  3. I always said I would never live with a boyfriend and I never did. Dan and I did buy our first house 6 months before our wedding though...

  4. Oooh, I remember the engage encounter! We took mine at Santa Barbara. It was certainly memorable! What a wonderful post!

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