Taking the leap to move in with your girlfriend is a serious decision. For any man in a wonderful relationship, the next obvious step would be to move in together.
While you may feel strongly about your girlfriend, you should make some assessments of living together prior to the move.
First, take some time to understand the concept of living together. Moving in with your girlfriend will create similar changes that would be expected after a marriage.
Discuss the reasons behind moving in together. Certain couples want to split their finances for support and security reasons, so they decide to cohabit.
When to move in with your girlfriend
The ideal scenario for moving in with your girlfriend is if you are seriously contemplating the next step – which is marriage.
You need to discuss your intentions of moving in together. Both parties need to be made aware of the other’s intention behind the cohabitation.
If your girlfriend believes that the next step is marriage and you believe otherwise, it means you have separate goals.
Honestly discuss your feelings about living together and what it means to both of you.
Create a verbal agreement based on rules and guidelines you both can live by happily. Split responsibilities and chores so that each person is pulling his or her weight around the house.
Decide where you want to live. It is likely both parties have their own places, so the question is which home will you move into?
Generally, one person will move into the other person’s home and legally cut ties with their current landlord in case they are renting.
Decide what furniture and personal belongings you will keep or throw out. Chances are that you have sufficient stuff to fill up two homes when combined. Both of you must decide what to keep and what to throw away.
Financial Benefits of Cohabitation
With the number of divorces increasingly filed each day, it is no wonder couples prefer to test living together before making that final commitment.
Also, divorce is not a pretty word and conjures terrifying pictures of legal hassles, parting with large chunks of hard-earned money and lots of bitterness.
Living together requires no legal binding which allows both partners the freedom of not facing legal complications. When a couple is in a long-term relationship, it might make sense to share the expenses like rent, gas, utilities, and groceries.
Just because a couple decides that living together offers financial benefits, it does not mean that they have no romance left in the relationship.
Living together has practical value, where couples can share their living expenses, living quarters, and bank accounts.
Getting to Know Her
When you’re dating it’s magic; going to parties and clubs, fine dining, great sex and then you get to go home. When you’re dating it’s all hot sexy underwear when you live together it’s sensibly warm pyjamas.
The relationship you had up until now was all pretense, all part of the courtship rituals and lies, now it’s time for reality to set in. In some cases this can only strengthen the relationship, in other cases, it can ruin it.
Tips on How to Cohabit Happily
Moving in together doesn’t necessarily mean living happily ever after, it takes a strong commitment and desire on both sides to live happily and peaceably with one another.
But it is possible and these tips will show you how.
First and foremost, it’s all about commitment. Do not take this word lightly. Commit to your partner, as this is the most important part of any relationship.
So if you’re not committed to her, then you really shouldn’t be moving in together.
Show respect to your girlfriend. Respecting your partner is vital to the survival of a relationship. Only if you show respect, you will gain respect.
While feelings and thoughts may differ on a variety of subjects, respecting these feelings and thoughts is vital. Often when there is a difference in thought, it can stir up anger and strife leading to hurt and pain on both sides.
Ensure this does not happen, and if it does be the bigger man and the first to apologize before bitterness sets in.
Continuing from the previous point never be too proud or too stubborn to say you’re sorry. If you are looking to cohabit happily, apologies go a long way.
Saying sorry can be difficult, but it must be a choice on your part. It is more than likely that you were both out of line but do not wait until your partner makes the first move.
Communicating does not come easy for men, unlike women. Women can talk all day but say nothing and men find it difficult to put their thoughts and feelings into words.
When you move in with your girlfriend you have to learn to communicate. Even though it may not be something that is easy for you. Communicating is both listening and talking.
Be careful to listen and understand your partner’s feelings and desires. Show compassion for the way your partner may be feeling in certain situations.
Ask open-ended questions, which leaves better room for communication.
Encouragement and Appreciation
Women like to be appreciated when they do little things like pick up after their men, cook them a nice meal, or dress up for an evening out.
Show your appreciation for the little things your partner does for you. Look for opportunities where you can lavish praise.
Be encouraging of your partner when it comes to their workplace, family, and other things. Appreciation will lead to a stronger and more fulfilling relationship. Remeber when you move in with your girlfriend you are both in it.
Enjoy Activities Together
Both partners must take time out of their hectic schedules to enjoy activities together. Be considerate to each other and switch between activities the other person enjoys.
Wherever you are, learn to enjoy time spent together. Create unexpected surprises like sending her flowers or surprising her for lunch at her workplace.
I know, sounds corny right? But trust me, they love this stuff.
A Means to an End
In the old days, the expectation was that you had to go straight from courtship to marriage. That’s like buying the car in the showroom without taking it for a test drive.
Nowadays you get to check the suspension first – no, no not that! Well that too, but I meant the suspension of your relationship.
The give-and-take, the back-and-forth, whether you and her are really rock solid or not. You have to give respect to get respect, and if you’re not giving any respect, or getting any, then there’s always going to be trouble down the line.
You want a woman who’s got your back and she needs to know you got hers. They say behind every great man is a great woman, and whilst I know many blokes get cold feet when it comes to taking relationships to the next level, the truth is it’s only by taking this step will you really learn whether or not you got one of the great ones.
Remember you are different to them
Keep in mind however, that even in today’s modern world you shouldn’t forget that women are still biologically, and in many cases sociologically, programmed to find a mate and procreate as soon as possible.
Your girlfriend might not be even conscious of it but at the back of her mind there’s a voice that’s saying, “Get married – have children”.
By living together first you learn whether or not you really are made for each other or not, as you both see yourselves for who you really are, not the person you pretended to be in courtship.
If it’s all still good, then, of course, marriage and children will come up again. This, too, can be a beautiful thing. But it can only be that beautiful thing if the conditions and relationship are right.
But if that sounds like too much responsibility, don’t worry, remember the six words that have served blokes throughout the centuries, “let’s practice with a puppy first.”
Just move in with your girlfriend. You can always move out.