- An important relationship milestone is when you move in together.
- You’re likely to learn a lot about each other during this time.
- You’ll become aware of every bad habit and quirk your partner has.
- But there are some nice things about it too.
- We asked millennials what they learned when they moved in with their significant other, and what they wish they’d known before taking the step.
Provided you’re in one for long enough, relationships are full of milestones. There’s “the talk,” the first time you say “I love you,” and meeting each other’s parents. Then there’s the point where you move in together.
Spending more time with the person you love can seem like a great idea on paper, but there’s also going to be a lot you didn’t predict. For instance, you’ll learn more about your partner’s bad habits, and you’ll realise how much you liked having your own space.
We asked millennials what they learned when they moved in with their significant other, and what they wish they’d known before taking the step. Unsurprisingly, many of them wanted to remain anonymous.
Below you’ll find their answers in a list of what to expect if you’re considering moving in with someone.
It’s definitely a learning curve.
1. You’ll learn more about each other
“I learnt family norms are definitely not norms for everyone. Although our cohabiting is a multicultural contrast, so at times we just learnt about our different ways of life, before knowing each other. [It] was a brilliant way to bond and grow with each other! I didn’t expect that to be such a positive!” – Jessie, a nurse in Norwich.
2. You’ll accept each other’s habits
“And after a while, those awkward habits happen and you learn to love them. Even the ones that gross you out.” – Jessie.
“Girls are gross too. You will now find clumps of long hair stuck to the wall in your shower and hair clips in every nook and cranny in your house.” – anon in London.
3. You’ll miss each other more when you’re apart
“The first week I was away from my boyfriend after moving in together felt really long and very strange. You quickly get used to always having them there.” – anon in London.
4. But you’ll also miss sleeping alone
“Despite that, there are times when I definitely miss sleeping alone – especially because my boyfriend and I need different amounts of sleep and like to go to bed at different times. Occasionally I wish I could just go to bed early, and stretch out alone, knowing there’ll be no interruptions.” – anon in London.
5. Your different schedules may become a problem
“You also need to understand each other’s needs and expectations when it comes to shared and solo activities – whether it’s sleeping, eating, or just having fun together. Extended stays before moving might give an insight into how your partner behaves when the novelty of keeping up impressions wears off. It might not seem like a huge deal but if your partner always likes to stay up late and you have early shifts, it might not just be the sleep-loss that feels painful but the empty bed too.” – anon in London.
6. You’ll talk about boring things like housework
“Your expectations with regards to housework (quantities and standards!) need to be the same. However it’s shared, you need to agree on whether your workload in the office should impact on your workload at home.” – anon in London.
7. You’ll also have some awkward chats about money
“Whether it’s about who should pay what in terms or rent, opening a joint account, or simply who has been spending more on groceries, you’ll probably have to have some awkward chats about finances. Still, it’s best to be open and honest instead of bottling up your thoughts and letting money become a problem.” – anon in London.
“It might seem really basic but it’s important to be clear and agreed from the outset on how each of you expect the rent to be split, whatever that might be based on.” – anon in London.
8. You will have sex less, not more
“People often assume when you move in together, you’ll be having sex all the time – but for most people I know, that’s really not the case. You get into a routine pretty quickly, and you have to make a conscious effort to make time for it.” – anon in London.
9. It’s nice having someone to wake up to every morning
“Despite it taking some time to adjust, having someone to wake up to every day – and to squeeze in a five minute cuddle before work with – is probably the best part.” – anon in London.
10. You can’t just have people round whenever you want like you used to
“If your partner is house proud you need to give them a good amount of notice if people are coming over so they can clean. This is something I had no idea about as I don’t care if my mates see my messy house.” – Leon, a video producer in London.
11. You’ll learn about their spending habits
“It’s awkward to raise but you need to be aware of your partner’s spending habits, even if just through observation – from their loan history and how many regular outgoings they have, to how punctual they are paying bills or even paying friends back, you need to know you’re not going to be left regularly covering someone else’s portion of the rent.” – anon in London.
12. Your decorating game will improve
“I never knew how much I liked having a well decorated house full of nice things like plants, paintings, clocks and stuff. When I lived alone I would never have made such an effort with my place but I should have because it genuinely makes me happier to be there.” – Leon.
13. You’ll need to be aware of each other’s mental health
“It may sometimes feel as though love can make anything manageable but you should be wary if your partner struggles with mental health issues, whether OCD, depression, or even social anxiety – they can impact on any relationship but when you throw shared financial or housekeeping responsibilities into the mix … It’s important to be prepared so you don’t end up overwhelmed.” – anon in London.
14. You’ll learn when you should be together — and apart
“Time together is super important, but so is your ‘me’ time. You’ll learn to tell your partner when you need some space, and also not to be offended when they ask the same of you. Nobody can be joined at the hip all the time, and if you don’t learn to be honest, it can cause problems further down the line.” – anon in London.
15. Learning to communicate better
“When you live in your own space, you can get distance from any arguments or disagreements you have with your partner. But when you live together, this isn’t so easy. That makes being able to talk through things all the more important, because otherwise resentments can build then eventually boil over.” – anon in London.
16. You will get on each other’s nerves sometimes
“Whether it’s cracking their knuckles or leaving their clothes all over the floor, you’ll find more things irritate you about your partner than before. But this is only because you’re exposed to their bad habits all the time. The best thing to do is tackle it head on and tell each other when something gets on your nerves. Either you’ll learn to live with their imperfections… or you won’t.” – anon in London.
17. Spontaneity will become your favourite word
“Living together doesn’t mean you’re suddenly a boring couple, but more things you do together will become mundane. So you’ll need to be spontaneous to keep the spark alive, like going on date nights and doing fun activities together.” – anon in London.
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