Should Couples live together before marriage?

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[ 12 June 2004: Message edited by: Durango ]

(A)nyone (B)ut ...

i think it depends on the relationship. theres no way you can judge how its gonna turn out. you think you have a firm grip on your relationship. good for you. just remember not to chicken out after every little fight. marriage takes work. if you love him. its worth it. [img]wink.gif" border="0[/img]


I'm getting married this summer and we have not lived together at all. The studies that I have read suggest that couples that live together have a higher rate of not being together in the years to come BUT you have to remember that it may not be their goal to be together forever - some people see relationships as transitory.


Having lived with someone for four years who I fully expected to marry, I definitely wouldn't do it again. If/when I meet someone that I want to live with forever, I'm not moving in with him (or letting him move in with me) until after marriage.

Loony Bin

I'm in my mid twenties, so these days it seems like just about everyone's getting married. I can't remember how many weddings I've been to in the last 12 months.

My very best girlfriend got married in April. She and her beau didn't live together before then, but she'd had a previous engagement, and [i]they[/i] did live together. Until they broke up, because the dude got lazy and greedy and figured he had it made, and why bother with the marriage if she was already cooking for him and doing his laundry. So eventually she realized that he wasn't for her after all (despite their shared house and the engagement ring she was wearing, and the wedding dress in her closet).

So in that case, I'd say it was a good thing for them to live together first, so that she had time to learn more about him and ultimately change her mind about him. It was especially fortunate in this case, because being religious, I don't know how easily she would have been able to divorce him if she'd wanted to later.

Another good friend of mine just got married last weekend. He didn't live with his bride, and in fact, they've "saved themselves" for marriage all this time (as in, a five or six-year courtship with no sex). This is the opposite end of the spectrum, if you ask me. I really wonder how well they'll get along when they have to [i]really[/i] get along, you know?

As for myself, I was living with a guy and I really enjoyed it. Now that I'm not, having moved across the country yet again, I can see how it might complicate the decision to marry within a long term relationship. Living together sort of gives you the responsibilities of marriage (sharing housework and money and making decisions together etc.), but it's open-ended, so there's little room for expectations beyond the here and now. I suppose if a couple got married in that frame of mind, they would continue to feel that individual freedom, despite the partnering, and possibly be more inclined to leave if things started to go sour.

tully s

living together is beneficial for two reasons. firstly, even if you don't have a joint account etc, you become aware of each other's finances and are paying bills together - and that gives you an idea of what it's gonna be like - we all know that $$$ is the # 1 reason for divorce in North America.
secondly - it gives you unlimited oportunities for sex - no more excuses of roommates, parents etc. - and as a priest once said to me - sex is only 10% of a marriage - but it is the first 10%.

Apple =]

I Was Reading Thought The Messages And I Came Across The Divorse Rating Of How "People Who Live Together Before Mariage Have Marriage Problems Leading To Divorse." Well, Most People Dont Realize That Almost 80% Of These People Who Are Moving In Together, Had Problems Before They Decided To Get Married. And Most Of These People See The Problem Right Before They Get Married But Have A Certain Date That They Are Trying To Hold For Marrage And Decide To Put The Problem Behind Them And Try To Tell Themselves "It's Going To Be Ok". They Dont Realize That They Arent Looking At The Whole Picture Of The Problem. Every Little Girl Imagines At Least Once In Their Child Hood About The Perfect Wedding And The Perfect Man, And Also Glidding Through The Dance Floor As If Walking On Air, And That Is Why, People Have Such High Divorse Ratings Before They Get Married Becuase They Dont Think About The Problem As A Whole And The Push For Their Dreams And Fantasies. [img]biggrin.gif" border="0[/img]

Maysie Maysie's picture

Welcome to babble Apple=]. I hope you enjoy yourself here.

First, [b]please[/b] don't capitalize each and every word in your post. It makes your text VERY hard to read. And it's a teensy bit annoying.

Second, what a blast from the past! My first reaction on seeing this thread for the first time is to start a thread called [b]Should couples have sex before marriage, and also, has there been a timewarp back to a time and place that is actually socially constructed and never existed?[/b]. [img]tongue.gif" border="0[/img] I get sarcastic sometimes, Apple=], forgive me. [img]smile.gif" border="0[/img]

And, um, Apple=]?


Every Little Girl Imagines At Least Once In Their Child Hood About The Perfect Wedding And The Perfect Man

No way does every girl or young woman or woman imagine this. And of those that do, I'd say they are brainwashed by (excuse me for the language I'm about to use) compulsory heteronormative patriachal imperative. I just made that up, but it sounds good doesn't it? [img]biggrin.gif" border="0[/img]


Also Glidding Through The Dance Floor As If Walking On Air,



Yes, couples should live together before taking the real plunge. Six months to a year should get ye over the infatuation stage and onto identifying the major differences before it's too late.



Originally posted by Slumberjack:
[b]Yes, couples should live together before taking the real plunge. Six months to a year should get ye over the infatuation stage and onto identifying the major differences before it's too late.[/b]

I wish the infatuation stage could last forever, so much fun [img]cool.gif" border="0[/img]



Originally posted by tully s:
[b]we all know that $$$ is the # 1 reason for divorce in North America[/b]

It is? I've never even heard of a couple breaking up over money.


I'm thinking of starting a companion thread entitled: "Should couples live together after marriage?"



I worked three years in a different city, 2 years after getting married.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

I'm trying to remember the actual details around the controversy surrounding an Anglican bishop who counselled couples to live together before marriage - this was ground-breaking advice in the 1970s when it happened.


Just FYI for the people who were concerned about PAs etc. Below is how it works in Quebec (reason I know this is because I have in the past worked as a legal assistant and dealt with the issue).

The standard documents here is called a Power of Attorney and Mandate. The PoA part is similar to what PAs are in other provinces. The Mandate portion only kicks in when the person granting the PoAM becomes mentally incompenent. It has to be homologated (similar process to will probate) by a Superior Court judgement. In order to be homologated the person making the request (ie the attorney) must obtain a medical, psychological and legal opinion from the mandator's (person who made the PoAM) doctor, social worker and notary.

Obviously you can grant a PoAM in favour of anyone you choose and because these documents are drafted by and signed before a notary they cannot be (easily) contested in court, just like a notarial will. 

As such, for unmarried, especially same sex couples these are important documents to have in order to prevent family members from interfering. Keep in mind that the simple act of getting married does not grant your spouse the rights that this document does. 


ps: homologation is a civil law term that essentially means activated or enforced

Sine Ziegler

Holy shart this thread is still open!! 


Want an update?


I bought a condo with the boyfriend in December of 2004 and boy was that ever a great idea. We doubled the profit by selling it three years later.


We were engaged a year after I wrote this post (2005)


We got married two years after this post (2006)


We bought a new house in the burbs with the profits from the condo (which we would never have otherwise afforded) in 2008 and had our first child.


Had our second child in 2010.


Still in love but not in lust ;P


I do have some friends who are going through divorce though. It was interesting reading this thread through, now that I am a few years older and more experienced.

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

That is amazing! Thanks so much for the update, SZ. And congratulations!


They do as they please as long as it free choice from both side. Just remember to make a good free union contract if they dont get married!

Marriage s not an obligation!

As simple as that.


Unionist wrote:

I'm thinking of starting a companion thread entitled: "Should couples live together after marriage?"



I think the secret to a happy marriage is not to spend too much time together. I live next to a supermarket and see all these couples shopping together, arguing over the produce, etc. I think in twenty years, I've shopped for groceries with the hubby maybe twice. And there's no way in hell I'd ever take him with me when I'm shopping for clothes.

Personal time good. Too much togetherness not good.

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

Oh, I don't know about that.  The blond guy and I work and live together.  I figure over the last 15 years we've probably spent as much time in each others company than the average couple does in 35 or 40 years.  We even like running errands together.  We don't argue over produce, although shopping for shoes, mattresses and appliances can be challenging, but only because these are items he is fussy about.  I'm not a fusser.  Fussing bugs me.  Regardless, we remain more happily married than most of the people we know.


My husband and I have been together for 10 years.  The first two years we lived in different cities.  The next two years we lived in the same city, but in different places.  Then we lived in the same house for a couple years.  Then we decided to get married.  I think we had our first argument a year or so after we married.

I love this man like crazy, which is a good thing because I'm pretty sure I drive him crazy.  I not only love him, but I'm still IN love with him.  I cannot imagine that ever changing.

Sven Sven's picture

Well, Ms. Sven and I have been living together for 15 years and we are happier and more content than we'd ever been before that.

Still not married.

So, yeah, I'd vote for living together before marriage! (wink)