You will never be ready to move in together.
That’s not a question. Moving in together is a distant cousin of having a baby together — you think you know, but you have no idea. And yes, that’s also the slogan from MTV’s “Diary” series. See how everything really is connected? Carl Sagan knows what I mean.
Anyway, regardless of whether you’ve been together for two years or two months, you’re not ready. All the sleepovers and Carnival cruises and camping trips in the world cannot prepare you for the distinct displeasure of realizing you have to share a bathroom. Forever.
You will never know someone as well as you know them when you can’t get away from them. When their alarm becomes your alarm. When their things are all over your things. When you don’t even know what “their things” and “your things” are anymore — except for the Riesling sitting pretty at 35 degrees, because I don’t share wine.
There is no standard code for how moving in together is supposed to work. For how you’re supposed to decide when or why it makes sense. For how you’re supposed to split the bills or the chores. For what to do when you want out, but your name is still on the lease. For when his “best childhood friend” just “happens to be in town,” a thousand miles from his own, and neglects to mention that by “crashing on your couch,” he means he’s your new freeloading roommate who just ate the last of your Lay’s BBQ potato chips.
The truth is, actually living with a romantic partner isn’t the scary part. Toilet seats and dishes and his weird collection of 25 cent vending machine figurines are all very real issues — some of the most important issues of the decade, depending on who you ask — but they’re manageable. The scary part is: what comes next?
We’re reaching or we’ve reached the part of our lives when our decisions stop affecting just tomorrow and start affecting the entirety of our existence. I know, it’s deep. There’s a diving board to your left. Assuming you’re a modern traditionalist (in that you believe in marriage, but also believe in living together before marriage), moving in together is essentially your last stop on the train headed for holy matrimony. While dating in general is a trial period, living together is the ultimate trial period — is this the person you want to live with until the Apocalypse next year? Time is running out to decide.
You will never be ready to move in together, so if you want to do it, do it. Worst-case scenario: You temporarily gain access to an extended DVD collection, cheaper rent, and someone to snuggle with every night. Best-case scenario: You know for certain that you’ve found your partner for life, and more importantly, for 2012.
Photo found on http://marcelvsu.tumblr.com/