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Thou Shalt Not Not (?) Live Together

Submitted by Katie on June 16, 2010 – 6:01 amComments

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Living Together-dannLiving with a significant other before marriage used to be considered “living in sin.”  With cohabitation becoming commonplace, our generation adopted the more harmless and much less fire and brimstone term “living together.”

When I decided to move across the country to be closer to my boyfriend, I never even considered moving in with him.  However, it seemed everyone else had.  In fact, they were shocked to hear we weren’t going to live together.

My boyfriend and I have been dating long distance somewhere between 8 months and 4.5 years.  Living in the same city sounds like a dream; living in the same small apartment sounds like a nightmare.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my boyfriend and somewhere in the future we’ll probably take that big step of occupying the same space on a daily basis.  (Although, I’m not sure what that would look like as his idea may be a sort of tented enclosure in an obscure region of Africa, whereas I’m partial to walls.)

My current preference against living together has little to do with moral or religious values.  It has everything to do with not wanting to deal with wet towels on my carpet and boy smell in my bathroom.  When I’m annoyed or frustrated or need to be alone, I want to retreat into my gender unneutral world of yellow sheets and fluffy, white comforters.

Now that I’m forced to think about this issue, I realize I have spent a lot of time claiming my independence as a woman, and I’m just not ready to compromise it.

Few of my peers would argue with the decision to wait to get married, yet they seem quick to judge my lack of intent to cohabitate.  On that note, when did my living situation become a public topic of discussion?  I guess I shouldn’t be surprised in an age when I track most of my friends’ relationships on Facebook.  Where’s the box for “in a relationship, but not shacking up?”

When did it become wrong not to live with your boyfriend?

(Photo courtesy of 00dann via Flickr)

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  • Ginger Blackstone

    Good for you. Living together is difficult in the best of relationships and does not qualify a relationship as legitimate, in my book. Look up LATs on wikipedia (married or longterm-committed people who Live Apart Together).

  • I am behind your decision 100%. I too had a long distance relationship during which I was getting very used to my independence and total control over my living space (for the first time since I was 19 - I had been living with boyfriends ever since). The thought of moving to europe to be near him was a no-brainer, but realistically it made more sense financially to co-habitate and I wish almost daily that I didn't have the hair in the sink, the crumbs on the counter, or his clothes all over the bedroom floor. In the end, it goes back to what you have said about commitment and simply making the choice to be together. Once that is made, you have to go all in - there is nothing worse than moving in together 5 years later only to find out you actually cannot stand one another.

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