6 steps for a smooth transition from going steady to living steady
Not yet feeling ready to get married, have kids, and adopt a cat together? Then you and your partner need to think carefully before moving in together. This significant step can be just as impactful on a seemingly strong relationship as a newborn or buying a home together.
There are no guarantees, but following these six steps will go some way in easing the strain your relationship could take.
#1 Make sure you’re doing it for the right reasons
The first thing you need to do is talk to each other and make sure that you are on the same page. If one of you has any doubts this will not work out. Moving in together when one of you is not ready will make it so much harder to pull out if something goes wrong.
#2 Talk about money
Money is one of the biggest causes of conflict in relationships, chiefly because so many people still see it as some kind of forbidden conversation. You need to sort this out as soon as possible; ensure both of you know what expectations and abilities are on the table. Things you need to talk about: whose name the lease will be in, how will you be splitting the rent, water and electricity and the groceries, once you’ve talked about this everything else should come easy.
#3 Be clear on household chores
If you don’t want to spend all your time arguing about the toilet seat being left up or whose turn it is to take out the trash. Set clear ground rules detailing who will be responsible for what. You will need to find a way to make your lifestyles mesh as smoothly as possible, but remember to give each other some grace as you settle in.
#4 Make the new place feel like home to both of you
You will both need to compromise. Be it a very ugly, old lazyboy inherited from a favourite aunt or a big screen television in the bedroom – there will be things both of you can live with and others you feel are non-negotiables. Be clear on these issues before you start packing and give up your rental.
Once you’ve sorted out the important things and you’re all moved in, remember this,
#5 You still need you own space
Living together doesn’t mean that you have to be together 24/7. When you feel like you need me-time, get a book and find a nice quiet place or take a nice relaxing bath. If you spend all your time together it won’t be good for your relationship or your sense of self.
#6 Know your partner’s quirks and habits
The relationship is definitely going to change so you need to get used to each other’s little quirks. Stinky bodily functions, cluttered bathroom vanities, socks and gym shoes left everywhere. Again, some grace and open discussions goes a long way in keeping a stable relationship healthy.
Don’t let the challenges intimidate you, moving in together might be hard but it will also be some of the best times of your lives.
Words: Natassha Burrell