Sunday, September 21, 2014

WHAT'S SO BAD ABOUT PREMARITAL COHABITATION?

Poll: Should couples live together before they get married?

It used to be the norm that people met, fell in love, got married, moved in together, and then started a family.  Today, more and more couples are living together before they get married.  According to the NCHS, 48% of people moved in with their significant other before they married them, a huge jump from 41% in 1995.

Premarital cohabitation is believed by many to be simply "taking the car for a test drive without buying it," so to speak.  I agree with this idea to an extent, I don't think you should live together just for fun.  You should only live together if you are truly committed to each other and are taking a step towards marriage, not if you only want to sleep together whenever you want or have the financial relief.  I believe moving in together before marriage can be a good idea if you are planning to spend the rest of your life with them; I base this opinion on my experiences with roommates.  Although I have never lived with a man, I see them being very similar.  I moved in with one of my best friends from high school after I graduated, and even though we were good friends, we did not make good roommates.

This experience makes me believe that you should see how you live together with your boyfriend/girlfriend before you marry them.  You may love them with all of your heart, buy maybe you will hate everything about the way they are around the house.  Perhaps they're messy, unhygienic, or loud.  That may make you start to question whether you can stand to live with this person for the rest of your life.

The only way for me to see it as acceptable is if you are planning an engagement.  What is the purpose of moving in together if you're not sure about each other in the first place?  Moving in can be a great way to ease into marriage, and a great way to learn how to compromise and share responsibilities beforehand.  However, once you're actually walking down the aisle, you may not have that excitement of "being married" because everything will be the same as it always has been, aside from the rock on your finger.

Sharing a place before marriage has good things about it too, if you're serious with the person you're going to live with.  Sharing the finances can relieve a huge financial burden, but should not be the sole reason for moving in together.  Being able to put away that extra bit of money each month is always a good feeling.  Living together shows you what that person will be like when you get married, so remember this: attraction is a feeling, love is a promise.

In all of the readings I have found, people who are against it have never tried it, and people who support it are happy married after a few months of living together.


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