Does living together make sense?

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deacon blues
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Does living together make sense?

Post by deacon blues » Mon Feb 13, 2023 8:17 am

I'm near 70 and I'm not thinking of actually changing my marital status, but does living together before or in place of marriage make sense to you folks out there? Why or why not.
I really like being married, especially to my current spouse. Frankly, I think my wife and my ex might have split up with me if we hadn't gotten married before we lived together. ;)
Sorry, I meant to put this in The Coffee Shop. If a moderator wants to move it, it's fine with me. :roll:
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Cnsl1
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Re: Does living together make sense?

Post by Cnsl1 » Mon Feb 13, 2023 12:14 pm

Man, I think whatever works for you and the person you're considering living with or marrying with is the right thing.

I know you said that you're married and not thinking of changing that status. So, asking for a friend?

There is research to support both scenarios, but frankly the research I've seen that supports NOT living together first is a bit skewed because the population it examined was religious folks. Now, the religious right is very quick to tout this research to show everyone that if you live together first before marrying your chances of breaking up are greater than if you do not live together first, which seems to be accurate IF you you have the apriori belief that living together is wrong. If you do not have that belief there's some evidence to suggest that living together first helps couples to find a better fit prior to marriage.

Where the research seems to be clear is that married people tend to report the highest level of happiness and satisfaction.

So it probably doesn't matter the route you take (or the building you marry in) but that you find a person with whom you want to share your life. Adding the "marriage" label to the relationship helps with longevity on average.

Your mileage may vary.

Caveat: this is not my field just what I remember based on some research I've done.

dogbite
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Re: Does living together make sense?

Post by dogbite » Mon Feb 13, 2023 12:30 pm

For the question to make sense, you have to figure out the scale on which "makes sense" is measured. There is no one absolute objective scale for that in my opinion.

For a given relationship, it might make sense, if you are prepared for possible outcomes of both success and failure. And have prepared your life for both possibilities, legally, financially, socially and so on.

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Red Ryder
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Re: Does living together make sense?

Post by Red Ryder » Mon Feb 13, 2023 1:30 pm

It makes sense in certain situations.

My oldest just moved in with their SO. It gives them time to determine if the relationship will before signing marriage papers or more perhaps future divorce papers.

Marriage is the easy side of the contract to enter while ending a marriage is the difficult part.

Morally, I don’t have an issue if a relationship chooses to cohabitate because the Holy Ghost no longer resides in my right shoulder. He gets offended by me too easily!
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RubinHighlander
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Re: Does living together make sense?

Post by RubinHighlander » Mon Feb 13, 2023 3:10 pm

Out of our six kids (3 from my first marriage, 3 from DWs) only one of them married and also married in the temple, as we and they were still TBMs. That couple is out of TSCC, they are pursuing their careers and have no plans for kids, happily married for 13 years now.

Currently 4 out of 5 of our other kids are in long-term relationships 2-10 years, just one grand kid. The youngest at 21, just broke off a six month long relationship. For the ones that are not married my advice is "Only if it offers you some tax advantage, otherwise, it's just an instrument of religious and western capitalistic control."
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Palerider
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Re: Does living together make sense?

Post by Palerider » Mon Feb 13, 2023 10:09 pm

Cnsl1 wrote:
Mon Feb 13, 2023 12:14 pm

There is research to support both scenarios, but frankly the research I've seen that supports NOT living together first is a bit skewed because the population it examined was religious folks.

Caveat: this is not my field just what I remember based on some research I've done.
The research we studied at ASU when I took some of my family therapy classes was pretty straight up regarding validity. No skewing. And my professor would not have been considered a "religious" or necessarily a conservative leaning guy. More just "show me the science."

But the studies suggested as you say, that people who live together, especially for an extended period of time, were less likely to have successful marriages when they did marry than those who did not live together previous to marriage.

That being said, I've had three kids who after failed temple marriages (after they left the church) lived for very short periods (less than 6 months) with their current spouses and all three are doing very well now after numerous years of marriage.

All three married very well adjusted non-mormons. Good kids.

Disclaimer: Family therapy isn't my professional field either. Just a side interest in human behavior.
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dogbite
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Re: Does living together make sense?

Post by dogbite » Tue Feb 14, 2023 11:39 am

Paleriders post illustrates part of what I meant by there's not an absolute scale. I'll be putting words in palerider's mouth so if he disagrees with what I say please correct me. I don't want to misrepresent you here.

Palerider seems to be advocating that a successful relationship is permanent, long-term,and ongoing. There's a lot of cultural assumption in my opinion in that assessment of value. Our present Western culture places a high value on permanent bonding relationships. And that's fine if it is also what you value too.

I think there are also valuable relationships that come with essentially term limits. Relationship has run its course and it's time to separate. Maybe there's a particular fixed event that marks that. Maybe its successfully raising the kids and now you're going to separate and go your own ways. I don't know that those are all failures or wrong.

Our religions and cultures have attached so much stigma to the dissolution of relationships that I don't think is objectively there.

We're always changing as we live The person who starts this post isn't the person who ends this post whether reading or writing it. So people in a relationship might change together in compatible ways or they might change together in incompatible ways. But that's not failure in and out itself. It's just what humans are.

I think the question requires that the individual assesses what they want out of the relationship and if that's a permanent idea or maybe it's only a temporary idea and that's all okay. I personally don't put much weight in what religion or society dictates as a successful relationship. They have their own interests in mind in those standards and not necessarily my interests.

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wtfluff
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Re: Does living together make sense?

Post by wtfluff » Tue Feb 14, 2023 2:21 pm

dogbite wrote:
Tue Feb 14, 2023 11:39 am
Paleriders post illustrates part of what I meant by there's not an absolute scale. I'll be putting words in palerider's mouth so if he disagrees with what I say please correct me. I don't want to misrepresent you here.

Palerider seems to be advocating that a successful relationship is permanent, long-term,and ongoing. There's a lot of cultural assumption in my opinion in that assessment of value. Our present Western culture places a high value on permanent bonding relationships. And that's fine if it is also what you value too.

I think there are also valuable relationships that come with essentially term limits. Relationship has run its course and it's time to separate. Maybe there's a particular fixed event that marks that. Maybe its successfully raising the kids and now you're going to separate and go your own ways. I don't know that those are all failures or wrong.

Our religions and cultures have attached so much stigma to the dissolution of relationships that I don't think is objectively there.

We're always changing as we live The person who starts this post isn't the person who ends this post whether reading or writing it. So people in a relationship might change together in compatible ways or they might change together in incompatible ways. But that's not failure in and out itself. It's just what humans are.

I think the question requires that the individual assesses what they want out of the relationship and if that's a permanent idea or maybe it's only a temporary idea and that's all okay. I personally don't put much weight in what religion or society dictates as a successful relationship. They have their own interests in mind in those standards and not necessarily my interests.
Image

With my religious blinders off, "permanent bonding relationships" just seem like a stupid goal (stupid human trick?) to me any more. Or maybe it's just the nihilism taking over... :o

Just think about it "statistically"... How many relationships do folks have that "fail" before marriage? And how many marriages fail? We toss around the statistic that 50% of marriages fail, but that doesn't include the failed relationships that lead to marriage... How many of us would jump at the opportunity for an investment that is basically has a 40-50% chance of failure? Yet we humans continue to tell ourselves that the most important act we can perform in our lives is to end up in a "permanent bonding relationship." We're Just. Not. Good at it.
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malkie
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Re: Does living together make sense?

Post by malkie » Tue Feb 14, 2023 8:48 pm

To me, there are so many variables that it's almost impossible for someone to try to make sense of someone else's situation.

I worked with a couple, both regular decent people, who had been living together happily (according to him) for several years. Then her parents started agitating for them to get married. They did so, and were divorced within the year.
aka malkie

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Red Ryder
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Re: Does living together make sense?

Post by Red Ryder » Wed Feb 15, 2023 8:59 am

I had a friend who got divorced from his wife and then never moved out due to logistics at the time. A month later and they both realized they were getting along better than ever. They stayed roommates (and lovers) and all was well until he died in a freak accident.
“It always devolves to Pantaloons. Always.” ~ Fluffy

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deacon blues
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Re: Does living together make sense?

Post by deacon blues » Wed Feb 15, 2023 11:43 am

Red Ryder wrote:
Wed Feb 15, 2023 8:59 am
I had a friend who got divorced from his wife and then never moved out due to logistics at the time. A month later and they both realized they were getting along better than ever. They stayed roommates (and lovers) and all was well until he died in a freak accident.
That's a cool story. I have always been committed to the relationship, and marriage seemed like a formality, but with kids it seems important to have a rock solid commitment. I'm know its a personal choice. For me marriage still seems right, even after my distancing from the Church.
God is Love. God is Truth. The greatest problem with organized religion is that the organization becomes god, rather than a means of serving God.

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Just This Guy
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Re: Does living together make sense?

Post by Just This Guy » Wed Feb 15, 2023 1:13 pm

There are number of aspects of life that are difficult to figure out on a good day. Things like finances, sex, and other various day to day aspects of life with someone. Living with someone makes knowing what you are getting into with a long term relationship a lot easier.

Some things are even worse. Like sex. To start with it is something that you are not really supposed to talk about. On top of that, going into a marriage a virgin, you may know or may not really understand what you want out of a relationship, let alone what questions that you should be asking. On top of that, you are raised with sex=bad throughout your youth in the church. sex is bad, bad, bad, but then, suddenly, it's good and ordained of god. Go forth an have lots of kids. Talk about a way to mess up some one's sex life. This can setup a couple for a lifetime of trouble because they didn't know what they were really getting into with the people they were marrying.

I am not saying that living together is the best way to do it. I am saying that it can defiantly help to get to know a person for who they really are before you make a very big commitment. You could consider it one way of getting informed consent.
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