I read an article today on iVillage.com which says that the US Census Bureau state that the number of unmarried couples has increased tenfold since the 1960s and that one of the fundamental reasons as to why couples who marry after living together divorce is because, once again, men and women have a different perception of why they are living together.

For the average woman, living together is a firm commitment from your guy and you pretty much expect to see a ring at some point if marrying is the way that you want to go. However, for the man apparently, living together is their way of evaluating the relationship before they make a commitment.

The article asks: “Are men really less committed than we think?” Er, no sh*t Sherlock! It doesn’t take living together to discover this fine fact!

Men and women completely differ in their way of thinking and unless you spell out your expectations of what you think living together means, the guy will think whatever he wants to think. Women already think about lots of these things and give a lot more energy to analysing the relationship, whilst some men barely seem to break wind over it.

The sad thing about yet another discovery in male thinking, is that there is yet another thing to unsettle us ladies out of our boudoir knickers. Here we are thinking that moving in with a guy means that you’re going in the right direction, i.e. you’re committed but it turns out that guys are using the opportunity to ‘find themselves’ or road test you to see if you meet the grade.

Living together is not a game of ‘Let’s Pretend’ where you prance around in fancy dress with a wendy house. Aside from the emotions and expectations, there is often a large financial commitment.

If you don’t know whether you want to commit to someone, moving in is not the way to go.

But the problem is that a woman’s idea of commitment, and a man’s idea of commitment are clearly two very different things. That’s why I say that you have to bring out the big guns and state your expectations these days. If you’re going to move in with someone or thinking about it, sit down and discuss what you both expect from this, because if you’re expecting a ring on the finger, followed by a wedding and some kids and he’s expecting some time out on your time whilst he plays house and decides if he wants to commit, you’re in deep doo doo, but at least you know the truth.

Or you can just not live together until you get married, but we need to get our government and economies on side. If you live anywhere like most places in England, it’s practical to share with someone and ideally we need to be removing financial practicality out of this decision. The overriding reason needs to be a concerted effort to both be committed….but on the same page of course!

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