Cohabitating before marriage

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time94am Posts : 42 Registered: 5/16/10
Cohabitating before marriage
Posted: May 17, 2010 8:30 PM

For those who have married within the past 3-4 years, what are your reasons for either cohabitating or not cohabitating before marriage?

Just to make it clear, the intention is not to judge others but I'm just very curious why you specificially chose to or not to live together before marriage.


cyndi33 Posts : 2,585 Registered: 1/3/07
Re: Cohabitating before marriage
Posted: May 17, 2010 8:41 PM Go to message in response to: time94am

Well, for us we knew we were getting married, and that necessitated a move. I could, he really couldn't, so I moved (to CO from WI). We didn't want to wait, we waited 22 years, and if I hadn't moved, and us cohabitate, then it would have been for sure another year, since my son was in school.

We went to high school together, but the first time he tried to date me, I said we should just be friends, basically, because he had dated my cousin earlier, and I dated his best friend through high school, and well...then I moved away and he got married. We met up when I was debating going to my 20 year hs reunion. We didn't want to waste any more time at all, so we cohabitated.

Did I have any moral reservations about doing that? No. But I don't have 'religious' reasoning involved, only personal. And, we were committed and intending to be married, so it just was for us the right thing to do.

In my first marriage, I also cohabited. So did he. Again, no religious reason not to. Was it the right choice? No, but the wronger choice was to m arry the people we married, however, hindsight is 20/20.

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August28th Posts : 153 Registered: 1/28/09
Re: Cohabitating before marriage
Posted: May 17, 2010 9:44 PM Go to message in response to: time94am

DH and I did not cohabitate before marriage. For us it was a "religious" reason. We had both kept our virginity for marriage and we wanted to experience the newness of everything within marriage. The transition was pretty smooth for us, not to say we've never had fights! But I'm glad we did things the way we did. Just my two cents!

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cyndi33 Posts : 2,585 Registered: 1/3/07
Re: Cohabitating before marriage
Posted: May 17, 2010 10:12 PM Go to message in response to: August28th

Actually, I will clarify here since my original answer was not really clear, "religion" wise anyway. Cohabiting is not against any religion. SEX is, and for us, there was no reason not to do either. And, I"m SO glad I didn't wait until after marriage to find out if we were sexually compatible.

To each their own, but again, cohabiting violates no religion, as far as I'm aware, and at 38 would I really want to claim virginity? no. that would have been silly.

Since this is a thread about cohabiting, I will leave it at that. For my religious views, though, the movie religulous is pretty good, and my views are much in line with its creator, bill maher.

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KCI Posts : 150 Registered: 3/30/09
Re: Cohabitating before marriage
Posted: May 17, 2010 11:29 PM Go to message in response to: cyndi33

I am not married, but thought I'd join in on the conversation anyway since I do live with my boyfriend and we are discussing marriage in the future.

Personally, I couldn't image marrying someone without having previously lived with them, and in my case, finding out whether or not we were sexually compatible. I find it comforting to know that we can handle living together, that we can share living space. We are learning to share financial responsibility. For me, it makes sense to cohabitate. I'm very happy living with my boyfriend. I enjoy having an in-house best friend.

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CatStandish Posts : 2,766 Registered: 6/20/08
Re: Cohabitating before marriage
Posted: May 17, 2010 11:40 PM Go to message in response to: time94am

for my first marriage, I did not live with him before we got married. It was a nightmare afterwards. We found out that while we were intellectually compatible, we were not habitationally compatible or sexually compatible. basically after the divorce (about 16 months into the marriage), I decided that if I ever got married again, I'd live with him first.

I did NOT let DH move in until we were engaged. However, he moved in the weekend after we got engaged and we lived together throughout the engagement. To me, this was a very important part of it. I wanted to make sure I could live with him.



ArtBride Posts : 4,838 Registered: 5/9/07
Re: Cohabitating before marriage
Posted: May 18, 2010 8:26 AM Go to message in response to: time94am

We did live together for a few months before our wedding. Our decision was mostly for practical reasons. And even though we didn't live together before that, that decision was also for practical reasons, not for moral or religious reasons.

DH and I dated for 7 years before getting engaged and had been together for 8 years by our wedding. We did not live together until about 5-6 months before the wedding. In our case, we met young (in college) and both had opportunities to pursue that took us to different states and cities. Eventually, when the time was right for us, we got engaged. At that point, we sat down and discussed which city would be the better place for us to live (i.e. who would move). After weighing the considerations, we decided that there were better opportunities for both of us in my city, so he started looking for a job there. When he found an appropriate one, he moved. As our wedding was only 5 or 6 months away, we decided it would be smarter for him to move in with me instead of finding his own place. Since we were only paying expensive rent for one place rather than two, we were able to put some money away, which made sense to us. I'm glad we did it that way. It would have been incredibly stressful if he had waited to look for jobs and move until after the wedding.

Personally, I don't have a problem with cohabitating before marriage. If circumstances had put us in the same state or city earlier, I'm sure we would have lived together earlier. I do not, however, believe that it is strictly necessary to live with someone before marriage 'to see if you're compatible' as people say. In our case, 8 years told us that we were compatible. Moving in together wasn't much of an adjustment at all for us. Yes, some people find it difficult to live together, but if both are committed to making the relationship work, I don't think it's any different if it takes place before or after marriage.

I totally agree with Cyndi that I would never EVER consider marrying someone without first seeing whether we were sexually compatible. Socks on the floor, I can live with - strange sexual perferences that turn me off, not so much.

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Colelle Posts : 48 Registered: 6/21/09
Re: Cohabitating before marriage
Posted: May 18, 2010 11:48 AM Go to message in response to: time94am

Fh and I have been together for almost 3 years, and got engaged this past October (getting married this July). We moved in together shortly after we got engaged. It allowed us to spend a heck of a lot more time together, as we were busy with me finishing school and him working a full time job, and we lived on opposite ends of the city. We are religious, so it was a bit iffy to take that step, but it felt right. We've been able to tuck away a lot more money now that we're contributing to one rent together, and let me tell ya, we have learned quite a bit more about each other since we've moved in together. We found out things about each other that we were shocked by (nothing bad, we just discovered we had different views on things). Its different when you see the person part-time than when you actually live with them. We're in pre-marital counseling though at the same time, so we've been getting through all/any issues mostly smoothly. After we get married we're moving across the country and he's starting med school while I start a new job/career, so I'm glad we're going through this transition now rather than later when its going to be hectic. The first year is supposed to be hard enough from what I hear.


CheetahAngel Posts : 2,017 Registered: 11/29/08
Re: Cohabitating before marriage
Posted: May 18, 2010 12:16 PM Go to message in response to: time94am

FH and I we moved in together after dating for 5 years. We got engaged 6 months after that. I think it's a great idea to move in before marriage. You get to experience what the other person will be like 24/7. You get to see their good days and their bad days. You get to see their bad habits and how much they help around the house etc. Basically you get to decide if you're willing to put up with this person forever LOL.


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MsDenuninani Posts : 3,962 Registered: 3/16/07
Re: Cohabitating before marriage
Posted: May 18, 2010 12:19 PM Go to message in response to: time94am

We were together about five years before we were engaged, during that entire time we lived apart. About 6 months into our engagement, we moved in together. It wasn't much of a shock. The main reason we hadn't done it before was because I was comfortable living where I was and felt no need to change it. Once I did, I thought, why hadn't I done this sooner, as it saved us some $$.


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kellyheartsjeff Posts : 66 Registered: 2/25/09
Re: Cohabitating before marriage
Posted: May 18, 2010 12:34 PM Go to message in response to: MsDenuninani

I'm not married yet, but we moved in together after 4 1/2 years of dating. Moving in together was a very easy process, we already knew each other well enough to know exactly what would set each other off/pet peeves/etc - so it was a very smooth transition for us. But we know of a lot of couples where it wasn't that easy. Those couples were really glad they moved in before getting married so they were able to work through it and make sure they were right for each other. That being said, I don't think it's necessary in every case to live together before marriage - it really depends on the couple. I think it also depends on how long they have been together. A PP (I think it was ArtBride?) said they had been dating for 7 years before they got engaged and didn't live together until a few months before the wedding - in that case I'm sure they were already well aware of what living together would be like, what to watch out for in terms of habits/etc.

So I would just say that to each their own and every couple has to determine what is personally right for them. I can say that I am really glad we lived together before getting engaged/married. While we didn't have stuff to work through in terms of living together, it brought us a lot closer in general.


08divabride Posts : 831 Registered: 11/17/07
Re: Cohabitating before marriage
Posted: May 18, 2010 1:19 PM Go to message in response to: time94am

DH and I did not live together before we got married, but we were getting busy! LOL I decided so for personal reasons.

I can see why people live together, but when we moved in together after the wedding, it felt right, It also gave me something to look forward too. Again that was my personal preference.

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IDzine01 Posts : 26 Registered: 2/27/09
Re: Cohabitating before marriage
Posted: May 18, 2010 1:53 PM Go to message in response to: 08divabride

dated for a year and then lived together for a year. That year was rough. It
was a surprise that we were so incompatible living under the same roof. Then I
was offered a job out of state. It was critical that I experience a time in my
life where I lived completely alone (no boyfriends, no roommates). I would have
serious regrets if I lived out the rest of my life without ever having a time
when I lived alone. During my 2 years away we saw each other every other
weekend and it really helped gain perspective. When we moved back in together
the second time we were better mentally prepared. That was 3 years ago and it's
been great. We just bought a house together last year. Neither of us are
looking for any surprises once we're married.

“Maybe some women aren't meant to be tamed. Maybe they just need to run free til they find someone just as wild to run with them.” -Sex and the City


communitynameis... Posts : 15 Registered: 5/13/10
Re: Cohabitating before marriage
Posted: May 19, 2010 11:02 AM Go to message in response to: IDzine01

My fiance and I started living together about a month after we became engaged. Originally I had NOT intended to live with him before we married, but that was not due to religious reasons. We had lost our virginity to each other in college, after waiting for QUITE a while. All the same, I had decided I didn't want to move in with him, because after we graduated it would have entailed moving from the Pacific Northwest to the Midwest (not something I was so keen on). I also had planned on attending graduate school right away, but not getting into affordable programs/not getting enough financial aid made me nix that plan about a month before graduation. So there I was, and my options were living at home or living with my fiance.

At this point we became engaged and my fiance and I opted for me to live at home as a cheaper option while he lived a bare bones life saving money as much as possible. But when I actually ARRIVED at home from college, I realized that something was terribly wrong in my parent's house. My father was having an affair, my mother didn't know. I knew their marriage was unraveling. I knew that I wouldn't be able to cope with my parents divorce all alone, so I made the choice to move to the Midwest.

While I was terribly depressed when I first got here, it was NOT because of my fiance. It was a large part due to feelings of terrible self-worth after not being in graduate school and my deteriorating relationship with my father. I am happy to say that I am no longer severely depressed, I am starting graduate school the week AFTER my honeymoon ends (yay!) and things with my family are slowly but surely improving. So even though I wanted to wait and make living with my fiance as a start to our actual marriage, I am glad to say that things worked out for the best. Even my mother-in-law, who fought DESPARATELY against our living together before marriage has conceded that we knew ourselves best and that this was the best decision.

Also, living together with someone you are compatible with is bliss most of the time, but you still need your alone time! My fiance has early mornings and Sunday mornings and all day Monday as his alone time, I have my late mornings (he works 7-5:30 four days a week and I work 9-5 five days a week). We each make a conscious effort to give each other alone time, but we still love our together time!


MikaylaK Posts : 53 Registered: 5/23/10
Re: Cohabitating before marriage
Posted: May 24, 2010 8:39 PM Go to message in response to: communitynameis...

FH and I plan to move in together in January. We don't cohabit at the moment, as we live in different cities, but we do want to live together before we get married.

We want to learn how to live together before getting married.

My sister cohabits with her boyfriend, and my other sister cohabited for a while as well. My father only ever had one condition: finish studying first (since he paid), then you can move in together. I find that quite reasonable.


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