My boyfriend and I moved in together a few months back, this is the first time I have ever lived with a boyfriend or even a boy come to think of it, (apart from my brother and dad!). I was nervous and knew if all went well this could be the last roommate I could have. I have lived away from home for 6 years now have had about 10 different locations and dozens of different flatmates. I was looking forward to coming home to a single bedroom flat and to a person who I wanted to spend my time with. From the first 6 months of living together I have learnt a lot, and I wanted to share some of these lessons. If anyone is feeling nervous about moving in with a partner for the first time - don't panic, well done for taking the leap of faith into love and trying something new for your relationship.
Not Everything has to be Like for Like
Sometimes I feel like I do more of the laundry than my boyfriend for example and I get frustrated, believing it's not fair. But keeping a well balanced "nest" doesn't always mean like for like. I have to remember that my boyfriend fixed our fire alarm, fixed the flush, polished my walking boots, always takes the bins out. Being a team you naturally find what your strengths are or just what you end up doing most of, as long as the contribution is the same it doesn't really matter the task.
This non like for like of things goes for food too, my boyfriend cycles for at least 2 hours a day so pretty much can eat whatever he wants and not put on a pound. I on the other hand do not! I need to remember when dishing out the dinner portions these do not need to be equal. Either party doesn't have to adjust to each others eating habits if it does not fit in with each others lifestyle. For example, I eat a lot less meat than my boyfriend, I don't need to eat more meat because he does -he can always add meat into meals when he likes.
Get Storage Savvy
So turns out when a guy moves in with you it's not like he is coming over for just a night and brings a couple of boxers and a toothbrush. He'll bring his books, TV, dvds, games, his digridoo, his vintage cameras, his native Uzbekistan costume.... (okay maybe the last ones on that list are unique to my other half!). You have to be willing to make room for each other and under take a clear out before the move because in many one bedroom flats there isn't double the wardrobe or storage space. Once you've done that, get creative with your storage space. Here is a great board to follow on Pinterest with lots of different storage saavy ideas.
You Can be a Couple and Flatmates
I am an extroverted introvert, which means I love being around people but also have a need for alone time to recharge. I feared having a need for this alone time, my boyfriend would take offense or take it personally if I randomly left the room or wasn't always up for post dinner board games. But you soon get into a routine and understand how each other work. Being in each other's pockets 24/7 isn't always a good thing and I believe you need still need to make time for yourself. You don't have to have act or be a couple the whole time, if you want to chill in your room alone, do it. If you want to eat at different times, do it.
Still Make Time for Date Night
On the flip side we still need to make time for date night! Before living together my boyfriend and I would see each other about twice a week, both having busy lives and living in opposite sides of the city. So when we did see each other, we made it an event. When you see each other all the time it is easy to let the idea of date night fall by the way side. Date night can quickly fall into sorting bills night or 4 loads of laundry night. Recognise when this happens a few weeks in a row and shake things up. For me, having quality time with my boyfriend is one of the most important things in our relationship. If you are struggling to think of new ideas, here is an extensive list of some date ideas you can try.
Overall I really love living with my boyfriend and we have had the chance to know and understand each other within a brand new context. It is a big step and can be scary, but if anyone is feeling nervous please feel free to comment below or message me directly and hopefully I can help in some way based on my experience so far.
As always, thanks for reading ❤