Hey y’all! This post is for all my millennial girl bosses that currently or has had a live in partner. Right now, I don’t live with my partner but I did for about 2 years and boy did we go through the motions. I love him dearly but living with him taught me a whole new level of patience I didn’t even know I had.
To start, I was so excited about moving in with him. We had such an awesome long distance relationship I just knew it would translate well when the distance was removed. Wrong! Y’all when I tell you the first couple of weeks within the transition I was like ok, who are you and what did you do with the person I thought I fell in love with? It didn’t help that when I first moved in, I moved into his studio apartment and we had no wall to divide us so we literally woke up looking at each other and went to sleep looking at each other. In efforts to get some alone time, we would spend a little longer in the bathroom as that was the only room with a door separating us. In a matter of a month of the studio life, we moved into our dream apartment that I still love til this day and we got our space y’all!
Although it still wasn’t perfect, we worked together to foster an environment that mutually worked and it thrived! Below are just a few of the ways that helped us make the transition a bit easier:
- Find a place that both of the people have ownership in! I think the biggest issue when I first moved in with my partner was the fact that I felt as though I was imposing on his space. It was his apartment that he decorated, was on the lease, and was the most comfortable with. I think we saw such a positive shift when we moved to our space because of the simple fact that it was truly our space. Both of us had our name on the lease. Both of us viewed it and fell in love with it. Both of us decorated it. So it was only right both of us felt comfortable in it.
- Communicate! Going into this roommate situation, my partner always told me, “people don’t break up or divorce because they no longer love each other, it’s usually due to a build up of continuously doing the most simplest things that makes them dislike one another.” An example he once gave was someone leaving their socks in the middle of the floor despite their partner telling them to put them away everyday. This may seem petty and unimportant but when small things build on top of the usual couple disagreements it can make living with someone unbearable. Yes, infidelity, disrespect, or other differences play a huge factor as well but most times the tipping blocks are those small annoying actions the person does, in this case those socks being in the middle of the floor on the wrong day. Due to this conversation we had early on, I became very vocal about my expectations of him as a roommate and vice versa. By making sure we understood and respected each other’s expectations we got past all the small nuances that could become big problems later.
- Give each other space! This was something I struggled with in the beginning because I love spending time and being around my partner. Although I loved it, it wasn’t healthy. In a relationship especially a relationship where you live with a person it’s very important to have your own life outside of that relationship. This means reading that book you always wanted to read, catching up on your shows, or my favorite being weekend window shopping at Nordstrom Rack. Just make sure you make time for yourself and don’t succumb to being “that person” (we all know who that person is).
- Be open minded! Y’all when I moved in with my partner he had no clue what a boundary was and I couldn’t for the life of me understand it. He used my body wash, drank my juices, and ate my snacks! He had to be more open minded about the fact that not everything is ours and develop a mindset that we could have things to ourselves. I on the other hand can be very selfish and didn’t take him into account most times. My most prominent memory of this is when he told me a very specific soap he wanted. Y’all, the soap was expensive so I got the cheaper option that I saw him previously use and boy was he upset. I had to learn to be more open minded about the decisions I made and actively take steps to be less selfish.
- Disperse Finances! So, my partner and I have a traditional non traditional outlook on who takes on what responsibilities. My partner took on the responsibility of all the household bills by paying rent, utilities, etc.. I took on all the other miscellaneous items like groceries and extracurricular activities. While we individually paid for our personal bills like credit cards, savings, etc.. This worked for us because it wasn’t blurry about whose role is what. It may not seem like I paid for more than him but some months it equaled out due to us going out more or around the holidays when we would need more groceries. This was in no form fool proof but due to this method, we never had a huge falling out over finances.
I say all this to say, it’s possible! Although I said a lot and it may have came off negative at times, I love my partner truly but transition from being a visiting roomie to a full time roommate was extremely hard! Any negative feelings I had about him doesn’t denote the fact that I still chose and continue to choose him daily. Me and him laugh and joke about these times now because we agreed that wasn’t the best part of us but we learned so much in the process. What do I say about living life uncomfortably? You need it to grow and this was a direct reflection of that! In the end, we learned each other’s preferred living environments and created a space that was comfortable for the both of us.
“Women who say that they have met the most amazing guy in the world are only saying that because they haven’t lived with them yet.” -Heather Chapple