Dear Dr. Neder:
This seems silly to me, but I am always in favor of a second opinion.
My boyfriend of 1 ? years and I are considering moving in together. Well, I suggested it and now it is on the table. You hit the nail on the head with your articles (http://www.beingaman.com/articleviewer.asp?ID=341, http://www.beingaman.com/articleviewer.asp?ID=235, http://www.beingaman.com/articleviewer.asp?ID=216 and http://www.beingaman.com/articleviewer.asp?ID=270), I do want our relationship to progress (bad reason to move in together after reading these articles) but I also want to know if we are wasting our time. A year and a half seems like a long time.
We alternate between homes, mine on the weekdays and his on the weekends. We do not sleep well together! Rare is a morning when we both wake up feeling refreshed. My thinking is well lets just figure it out NOW, we are either going to make it or we should move on.
Furthermore, he is a difficult fellow. He is military born and bred and his emotions consist entirely of logic. He looks at our relationship in a completely logical fashion to the point where he weighs the pros and cons and must have decided the pros outweigh the cons.
What I am driving at is insecurity. I want to move in to get to that level of understanding and comprehension of what the other person is about. Our issue is that I am an emotional female and he is an overly logical male.
I am sorry if it seems like I am writing an advice columnist, but it seems like you have a handle on when to, and when not to make these relationship changes.
A second opinion seems silly to you??? Actually, I *am* an advice columnist, so it doesn't seem odd to me at all. Here's what's going on:
You two really are opposites. That can be a very good thing - or a very bad thing depending on how you handle it. If he's logic and you're emotion, that's going to make for some very challenging times indeed! It's far better to have a balance between them as you both not only need to get your own needs met, but you also need to be able to understand (and sometimes adopt) the other's point of view. Being on such opposite sides of the fence may create great tension between you. I first suggest that you both work on this as a goal in your relationship; to gain a better handle on the other's methods to understanding and dealing with both joys and problems within the relationship.
With regards to moving in together, let's consider a few points:
First of all, you mentioned that "...a year and a half seems like a long time..." My question is: for what? Do you think that you need to move in together or be married simply because of the passage of time? That's very short-sighted in my humble. Living together, dating, marriage, etc., are not "relationships". They are FORMATS of relationships! Do you understand the difference? It's a critical distinction. The format has nothing whatsoever to do with the quality other than the more "tight" the format the greater the conflicts in a less-than-perfect relationship; and let's face it - there is no perfect relationship! I would strongly urge you to forget the timeframes and focus on the quality instead. Make decisions for your relationship based on what you want to grow or change - not because a certain amount of time has passed.
You mentioned that you and he don't wake up refreshed from sleeping together. Can you learn to, or are you going to start sleeping in different beds? This is another critical question to answer as if you wind up in different beds, or even different rooms you're going to quickly question your reasoning for being together in the first place. Do you (or he) really need just a roommate? Just because 1.5 years have past, do you really think that if you don't move in together you're not "going anywhere" with the relationship? Again, that's short-sighted.
Things like moving in together and even getting married isn't going to solve your insecurity problems. This is internal - not external. It's just as easy for one person to cheat when living together or being married as it is when you're just dating. That's not going to solve your insecurity issues; and in fact, it may even make it worse. When tensions arise in the relationship are you going to assume that he's out with other women? I can assure you that they will arise as that's part of being under the same roof. Insecurities need to be handled before you consider such a drastic change in your relationship format.
All in all, the reasons for moving in together should stem from having a terrific, solid relationship in the first place and both parties wanting to grow all those good things. It should never be done (nor should marriage) in order to solve other problems. It exists for its own benefit and for its own reasons.
Have a love, dating, relationship, sex or man/woman question? I answer all email. You can write to me at firstname.lastname@example.org for answers. For more information about my books, "Being a Man in a Woman's World" (volumes I & II), and other products visit: www.beingaman.com. Check out the discussion group at: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/beingaman.
Copyright (c) 2005, Dr. Dennis W. Neder
All rights reserved.
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