In a little over a week I will be moving in with my boyfriend and his two housemates. I have never lived with a partner before, or any guy at all for that matter. (Well, unless you count my younger brother, but there’s a twelve year age gap between us, so…)
Not gonna lie, I have mixed feelings about it. Don’t get me wrong, I am looking forward to it. For one, it will be convenient as hell. I spend the majority of my time there anyway, so at least I won’t be living out of a bag anymore. Plus I get along great with Steve’s housemates, and the rent will be cheap AF…
Let me explain: I’ve lived with different housemates for the past six years — always girls — and that bond is tight, man. It’s something akin to sisters. It’s this understanding that you share a sacred space where you can just be.There’s no masks, no pretences. You can hang out and gossip and eat ice cream together while watching Seinfeld, but there’s no obligation to. If you just want to chill on the couch and not speak to each other that’s totally fine. There’s no comment if one of you is drunk on a random Tuesday, or if you decide to go to bed at 9:30pm on a Friday night.
For the past year I’ve lived with Alex. A girl I’ve been friends with since I was ten years old. We’ve heard each other have sex. She was witness to the tumultuous beginning of my relationship with Steve. We have a “no pants with zippers in the house” rule, and a judgement-free zone when it comes to licking your plate clean.
We’ve talked about our menstrual cycles in detail, and have lamented at the amount of hair that clogs the bathroom drain. We do each other’s washing, and she weighs my chicken so I know how much protein I’m getting when we make dinner together (or rather when she makes dinner for me). Did I mention she makes dinner for me?
Now I’m a pretty easy-going person, and while I’m fairly positive Chris and Henry won’t want to sit down and chat with me about how frustrating it is that tampons are taxed and my god all I want to do is drown myself in chocolate and cry, I think we’ll get along fine. I actually let Chris borrow my $23,000 car last night and didn’t spend all night freaking out, so I think that’s a great start. Plus the amount of times he’s picked me and Steve up or dropped us off places so we could drink outweighs any potentially frustrating habits he may have.
Truthfully the biggest change to accept will be… (pause for dramatic effect) sharing a bedroom.
That’s the one thing about housemates. They share your space, but your bedroom is still your own. If you need to be alone, that’s your sanctuary. I fought long and hard for a bedroom of my own as a kid — my sister and I got sick of sharing by the time we were both teenagers — and, even though it’s only a week away, I can’t fathom what it will be like to not have that space to myself anymore.
Now I totally understand sharing with your partner is entirely different to sharing with a sibling, and I love waking up with Steve (apart from how he’s totally not a morning person, haha), but I also love that time before bed where I’m just in my room reading or playing on my computer and just unwinding before it’s time for sleep. While admittedly, I’ll still be able to do this because Steve’s version of unwinding is different to mine (he prefers relaxing on the couch), it’s such a foreign concept to know that I will probably never sleep alone again aside from the odd occasion where we’re apart, or you know, if we decide we hate each other and break up.
That’s the other bizarre part of this. While there are certainly risks involved with choosing housemates — whether they understand boundaries, clean up after themselves, eat your food, have unwanted guests up in your space all the time, etc. — there’s so much more to consider with a partner. People break up all the time. Surely you’re just increasing the odds by living with them? That sounds pretty cynical, even for me, but it’s a thought that has crossed my mind at least once. What happens if this doesn’t work? I’ve had housemates who I didn’t coexist well with in the past, but like I said before, that sweet bedroom sanctuary got me through until the lease was up. What the hell do you do in this scenario? Call Mum and beg for your old bedroom back I guess?
But let’s add some positivity to this post because I don’t want to end it on a negative note. I am excited for this move. It’s a huge change, and a big commitment, but I have every confidence that Steve and I will navigate it well. It’s the first step towards our goals for the future.
In conclusion, I’d like to end this post with a note for my soon-to-be former housemate:
Alex, I’ll miss living with you. But I won’t miss that annoying automatic sensor you plugged into the TV so it turns off after 45 minutes. Also, I ate the rest of the custard as I wrote this. ❤