10 Painfully Honest Things You Must Know Before Shacking Up Together

Moving in together is a big step.

Last updated on Mar 07, 2024

Happy couple enjoying each others company courtneyk | Canva 

You've just made the huge step of moving in together or getting married. Congratulations on the big relationship move! Now, what's next? The dream of hot intimacy whenever you want it. Splitting the finances 50/50. The possibilities are endless. Then, reality sets in. You had no idea that your partner was a neat freak. You have no time for friends, and you feel like you don't know one another anymore. As far as intimacy, maybe you have it once a month, and that's if there's nothing better on TV. 


When you are angry at your partner, there is nowhere to hide. You will have to talk about your problems. For some this is scary and for others, it is not, depending on your style. You realize that the only people who have the perfect relationship are in the movies. Hopefully, you realize you don't have to have the perfect relationship and start to strive for a good enough relationship. Here are some helpful tips to help keep you sane in your relationship.

RELATED: What Scares Guys The Most About Moving In With Their Girlfriend

Here are 9 painfully honest things you must know before shacking up together:

1. Make sure you're doing it for the right reasons

For a lot of couples, moving in together just happens. They don't usually weigh out the pros and cons or make plans in advance. Maybe, it just felt right or it was convenient. No more arguing about where you will stay or having to bring an overnight bag. For some, it may be a test for the future. For others, they just may be trying it out. Either way, it's important to have a conversation about what moving in means to each of you. If you're not on the same page and you move in together, you're inevitably going to have conflict over it.




2. Be prepared for change

Change is inevitable when you move in together or get married. Even couples who've dated for years before moving in together or getting married, need to make adjustments. They start to see their honey-bunny's little quirks and habits. Maybe, the things you thought were cute aren't so cute anymore.

Suddenly, snuggling together in the morning isn't as great as you thought it might be. When you start to smell your partner's bad breath or hear them fart when they think you are asleep. At this point, you know the 24-hour intimacy-a-thon is over. Living together requires work on both parts. Remember to surprise your partner with the little things. Like flowers for no reason or taking out the trash without being asked. An occasional flirty text can help keep the spark alive.

3. Have your own space

Just because you live together, it doesn't mean you have to be together 24-7. You will still need to have time for yourself. Both of you should make it a point to carve out time for yourself. It can be as simple as taking a walk when you get home from work. If you have them available, you can carve out a man cave in the garage or decorate the spare room the way you would like it. 


RELATED: Things Guys Say... And What They Mean

4. Accept influence from one another

This doesn't mean you have to like everything that your partner likes. It just means you need to be open to your partner's ideas. Find a way to make your lifestyles mesh as smoothly as possible. I'm sure you've noticed that living together is entirely different from staying together over long weekends. Try to establish some ground rules that you both influence. For example, if you're a neat freak and he isn't, try to come up with a happy medium.

5. You don't always have to be right

It's easy to argue for your point of view, but this can be damaging to the relationship. This goes with accepting influence. Listen to your partner and try to understand their point of view. This will help build the friendship in the relationship.

6. Establish rituals of connection

Start with the simple things like departing and greeting for the day. Know at least one important thing about your partner's day before you leave, and ask them about it at the end of the day. Celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, and holidays. Know when you will see your partner. 


RELATED: The 5 Stages Of A Relationship All Couples Go Through, According To Research

7. State your appreciation to one another

This is one of those things that is easy to forget after being in a relationship for a while. Tell your partner often what you appreciate about them. For example, I like how you see the bright side of things, or your willingness to help out around the house.



8. Brag about your partner to your friends and family

Even if they say you don't need to or that they don't like it, they do. Instead of telling your friends the negative about your partner or your relationship, let them know how much you love and appreciate your partner. For example, let them know your partner is the love of your life, that you are happily married and you can't wait to see your partner when you get home at the end of the day.


9. Be gentle with one another

After you've been in a relationship for a while, it's easy not to use a filter. Start conversations with your partner gently, especially when it is about a reoccurring conflict in the relationship. Remember, to put your partner first. This is most important in a relationship. If you focus on things you both enjoy and nurture the friendship, your chances of being together for the long haul are pretty good. The research at The Gottman Institute has found that a strong friendship is the foundation for a relationship. This also will help with intimacy, and let's face it who doesn't want intimacy to be good in their relationship?

RELATED: 5 Deep, Emotional Needs Your Partner Must Meet For A Relationship To Last

Lianne Avila is a licensed marriage and family therapist with a practice in San Mateo, CA. Her work has been featured in Psych Central, BRIDES, and Prevention.