Live in relationships have become a normality as not everyone ascribes to the ‘marital status’ idea. To keep it simple, a live-in relationship is a living arrangement between a couple who live together in a house and do everything as a married couple. However, they have not been admitted into the institution of marriage. So, their situation is synonymous with cohabitation.
The institution of marriage is pretty strict and requires lots of boxes, ticked. However, if you are not sure getting married to your boyfriend would work out, you could try cohabiting and find your answer.
Cohabiting comes with its benefits and disadvantages. In some cultures and religions, cohabitation and same-sex relationships are frowned upon. However, in some Western countries, they are socially acceptable.
Likewise, live-in relationships come with rules. And if you put in the right effort, it can help improve your relationship quality. If not, you could be served a cold plate of heartbreak. And that can be disheartening. On that note, here are some rules to having great live-in relationships.
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Now that you and your partner are living together, you both need to plan how to run the house. You’ll first have to consider financial management. Who pays for what? Should you have a joint account? Should you split financial responsibilities?
You and your partner would have a chat about this before moving in together. This should be implemented before moving in together. Doing this would help to prevent unnecessary arguments when you two are cohabiting.
Another rule for live-in relationships is to try as much as possible to prevent pregnancy. Moving in with your boyfriend means sharing the same bed. And this means unscheduled sex. Pregnancy can happen. As mentioned above, in some societies, cohabiting is frowned upon. Being pregnant in those societies means you might also be shunned by society.
Your child may be viewed as illegitimate. This is because your baby was born out of wedlock. And this might not be very good for your psychological health. Again, your guy may (for reasons known to him) leave you to care alone for the baby. So always, ensure that you and your guy have protection to prevent any pregnancy.
A live-in relationship might turn out to be good if you’re both testing each other’s character before marriage. It’s a good way to test what married life with your husband would be like. No doubt, there would be lots of chores at home and this would be a chance to know whether your man is a progressive thinker or not. Usually, during the dating stage, it can be difficult to know.
So, you can both decide what chores to divide like doing the laundry, cooking, cleaning, etc.
Marriage is no small decision. And before you take a step into that area, you need to be sure about a lot of things. Moving in with your man would mean a lot of adjustments for both of you. It would be dramatic if you always have arguments about how your man uses toothpaste. But with a live-in situation, you get to know what exactly you are getting yourself into.
Many people enter a marriage with a lot of expectations. More than half of the time, they do not get what they bargained for. However, before moving in with your spouse, a live-in situation helps you understand what you are going into. And when you and your guy get married, you won’t be caught off guard by his behavior.
Compatibility is an issue most people discover late—long after they are married. Cohabiting will test compatibility. Sometimes, the dating period seems so perfect you often assume it’ll remain the same when you become husband and wife. Then, you discover that you overlooked a lot of things during the dating and courtship phase.
However, cohabiting couples can assess how compatible they are with each other. That way, they can both know if they’re the right match before they get married.
No doubt, a few months after you and your boyfriend live together, everything will be pure bliss. But after a while, the flaws will become very evident. That is when the disagreements commence. No two human beings hold the same opinions. There is bound to be a difference in thought. This will reflect in actions, and sometimes, might be irritating.
As two adults, it would be prudent to learn to solve issues together. You’ll both have to understand how to calmly deal with issues and how to tolerate each other. This is how healthy relationships are built. Therefore, by the time you get married, you are taking off from where you left the live-in relationship.
Since you and your boyfriend live in the same place, it won’t be difficult to initiate sexual relations. You can have fun and explore different sex positions. This way, you’ll know his sexual preferences. This can heighten the intimacy level between you two. Ultimately, you’ll understand how to please him sexually. However, it might be wise to use protection to prevent being unmarried parents.
As cohabiting couples, it is wise to understand how long you intend on living together. After a certain period, if you are both sure about getting married, there is no reason why you should keep cohabiting. However, if you think cohabitation is good for you, that is fine. However, if you live in a society where unmarried couples living together is considered immoral, you will have to tolerate the occasional mocking and stigma that comes with it.
Another rule to having a great live-in relationship is that you should be willing to change and adapt. So once you discover that there are better ways of doing things, you should be willing to give up those ways and change.
What’s more, if your partner points out those bad habits, you should be willing to do better. That is how we grow, by getting better. Also, as you are living with your boyfriend, you will have to learn to adapt. Even though change is necessary, it does not happen overnight. So if you also observe and point out a bad habit to your partner, while he is working on it, you would have to learn to adapt.
The purpose of a live-in relationship is to allow the couple to get to know each other better without being in a marital relationship.
Some rules of a live-in relationship include financial management, time-limit, division of chores, protection against pregnancy, etc.
A married man can live with an unmarried woman. It is not illegal. However, she has to be of legal age. That being said, unmarried couples living together is considered immoral in some cultures.
The disadvantages of a live-in relationship vary. For one, you could be tagged as an immoral woman and stigmatized. In case of pregnancy, the guy can leave you to carry the responsibility alone. You cannot inherit any property (unless there is a will). This is because you are not legally married.
Marriage is better than a live-in relationship. This is because marriage has more security. Some studies show that married couples have sound physical and mental health as compared to cohabiting couples.
Before I sign out, you need to understand that the whole idea of living together as unmarried couples is no easy feat. And like every institution, for it to work, certain rules have to be put in place. The same applies to all live-in relationships. So, if you happen to consider live-in relationships, make sure to apply the rules explained above.
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