Guy, I am about to make the biggest plunge of my life. My girlfriend and I are getting a new place that’s close to both of our work and also bigger than either of our places now. This certainly seems like a win-win for both of us, free time together, more time at home, and our wallets. My best buds are kidding me about how my life as I know it is about to change big time and that I better buy earphones to replace my sub-woofers. Sure, like OK, that makes sense to me, but they keep going on about other stuff. Any guy-tips out there for me? TP, NY – – – – – –
First of all, Congratulations on the move! It sounds like it’s a wise move for you now as the more experience at this partnering thing you have, the better life gets. You seem totally in line with guyMystique’s #1 Dating Rule: “You are not dating seriously unless you are dating someone you can be serious about.” You are trusting each other to make sure this works for both of you. She doesn’t want anyone walking out ten years from now, and neither do you.
Now about your friends teasing you. There are all probably all still single, or newly single, right? …living with roommates or whatever, and they know you may be spending more time at home than out with them. However, there are some things in this moving in together that all us guys have humor with, so lets dive in.
Looking at the big picture, even though both of you want to move in together, you two may not be visualizing how this changes your relationship the same way. Although it is not the same as saying “I do”, for her this is a big deal – she is making a space and a home. From a guy’s point of view, it is more of ‘can I live with that person’ rather than ‘can I live in that space.’ After all, as long as that space it fits your guy stuff, what else is there? Right? Note-See Living Room and Bed Room below.
Guys are like wolves in the forest, they can sleep anywhere and eat the same food ten days in a row. That makes us very easy to live with, our wolf-diet aside. However even wolves get domestic when they form a den. Here’s some fun thoughts to look at in your new domestication process, some of which may be what your friends are kidding you about.
First is the humor of simply combining your two places into one:
- The living room. Look at your living room before the move-in. Did you ever see a living room that looked like that on TV or the movies? What movie… just sayin’ that’s all. So that old couch, giant screen tv with sub-woofers, with twin gamer lounge chairs, and especially the mini-fridge kegerator, have all been discussed and mapped out, …right? The good part is that she probably does not see this as a conflict, after all, your stuff may simply be a land-fill problem.
- The bedroom. Oh yes the bedroom. This usually goes so smoothly that you never even notice the subtle changes. Take your present sheets, be they black, blue, red or white, they will change. And no matter what agreements you make about no-lace, or no-bramble, or no flowered comforter, or the twenty-two pillows… just forget it. Embrace the change – pick another point to argue.
Second is actually playing house, doing those cohabitation things:
- Shopping together for weekly food. As a single guy you have done this many times, only you picked up beer and something special for that night. Now you will be upgrading the quality of your food consumption, so when you are at the grocery store, and she asks “What do you like?” your answer of “Oh anything, I hardly eat” may not be actually true. You are going to eat what both of you purchased at the store.
- Day to Day living with each other. Well, when you both come home from work, every day, then you will experience sharing your day to day, and also listening to things happening in her life. You also may find that your activities you used to do on those nights you weren’t seeing her are now changed. Maybe even gone, ergo your friends teasing you about how they may never see you again.
- Remember, if change your life and your friends and the movies you watch at 10 PM, then it is you who is changing your own life. Each person in the relationship may change some habits/behaviors/schedules/friendships they have as an effort to please the other, but remember, when it comes down to it, each of you is deciding your own lives and also how you live together into the future.
And oh those student loans and other pesky debt. Yes, finances are the #1 cause of arguments so embrace it:
- Sharing house expenses as a couple. In single life it is always easier to date someone you are not splitting auto payments with. Now you are running a household together.
- Looking at each other’s debt. Uggh, try that when you are just dating as a single. Yes, monthly income minus monthly payments is not always an easy subject to hop into. You and she might even be shocked at learning of some of the bigger things going on in each other’s financial lives.
- Things like those pesky student loans and large credit card debt
- Things like those great vacations you went with her on and put them all on your charge card. Oh, and surprise – so did she!’
- Things like new cars and boats, and giant home entertainment centers
- I remember one humorous event when this guy purchased a five-thousand dollar engagement ring for his fiancé and then after they were married she noticed that charge card event was now part of their mutual debt. She laughed and lived with it, by the way.
I suppose if I had one tip to close this with, it would be You are taking responsibility in deciding your future with her in your larger life. Good luck and all the best to you and yours.
READERS: What have your experiences been with moving in and surprises?
Post by Geoff LaPlace