So you've done it: You said the words, she's said yes, and you've handed her the keys to your apartment. Now your lives are really entwined. Living with your ladyfriend isn't always the simplest of tasks, so we asked dateologist Tracey Steinberg a few ways to smooth the transition. "Moving in together is a huge step which can make or break a couple," she says. "It can solidify your relationship and bring you two closer and it can expose you to all of their annoying habits." Better get started then.
1. Make Yourselves (Both) Comfortable
You might be a little more punk rock or Superman-crazed than her, but don't ruin her space. She needs it too. "Make joint decisions on how you'll decorate your place together so that you both can feel comfortable at the new place," Steinberg says. "If you have doubles of anything such as kitchen appliances it's best to keep whatever is cleaner and nicer and donate the other."
2. Don't Slack Off
You'd better plan how you're going to live with her in advance, and not just take it in stride. "Share financial responsibilities and split the chores in advance," Steinberg says. "In addition to being romantic partners, you are now also roommates. And nothing kills the mood faster than feeling resentment because the bed hasn't been made and the lights won't turn on.
3. Spend Time Apart
Yes, she's your roommate, romantic partner, and buddy, but it can get a little overwhelming for both of you once in a while. Steinberg says, "Just because the two of you are living under the same roof, it doesn't mean that you always need to be together. No matter how much you love each other, everyone needs some breathing room once in a while and it will make your time together that much sweeter."
4. Keep Dating
It's tempting to let your romantic side slide as you begin to live together. After all, you see her all the time. This, Steinberg points out, is a big mistake. Get out and do stuff. "Just because you’re living together, it doesn’t mean that you two should spend every night on the couch," Steinberg says. "Get out of the house and engage in fun activities together to remind you of why you decided to live together in the first place."
5. All the Small Things
In or out of the doghouse, it's important that you remember why you're with her, and that you continually do small things for her even when you're complacent in your living space. " Small gestures of appreciation such as picking up her favorite flowers every now and then can go a long way toward having a healthy and happy relationship," says Steinberg.