You thought living together would mean waking in his arms every morning. Little did you know that he eats all the ice cream without ever buying more, refuses to take out the trash and hogs the remote control. After a week of cohabitation, he's looking less like Romeo and more like your freshman roommate from hell.
Sound familiar? "You never truly know a person until you live with them. You'll realize you learn more about them in a week of living together than years of dating," says iVillager Pingery. But don't give up hope yet! Learn to manage those little snags amicably with these tips before you put him out with the dogs.
Problem: He's a slob
Solution: Don't do everything -- delegate the chores
"Assign your significant other the dedicated duty of your choice, based upon what you think he needs work with. My significant other has a problem with toothpaste. It gets EVERYWHERE. So it is his chore to clean the bathroom frequently or when asked. Now there's rarely a toothpaste smear anywhere!" --passion8
"What you need to do is STOP doing everything for him and STOP doing anything that isn't absolutely necessary. When he has no clean shorts, he will do the laundry. Don't enable him anymore and see what happens." --jezibelle
Problem: Who pays the bills?
Solution: Open a joint account
"We have three accounts: mine, his, and a joint one. We both put the same amount in the joint account, since we make generally the same amount. Another alternative is to pay a percentage of your salary if there is a large discrepancy between paychecks. For example, you each contribute 50% of your paycheck into the joint account to pay household bills. It works very well for us." --terid99
More tips: Stop Fighting About Money
Love Me and My Money Issues
Money and Relationships message board
Problem: Every disagreement becomes an argument
Solution: Learn to fight fair
"I think the best thing to do is find time you and he can have a heart-to-heart and try to communicate with him, WITHOUT blaming or putting him on the defensive. Don't say things like, 'You always,' or 'You never.' Instead say, 'I feel like this." Then just try really hard to accept him the way he is and appreciate his good qualities." --jezibelle
"When you have expressed your concern, let him answer. However don't interrupt or get defensive. Give him his chance to express his own feelings about the relationship." --Pattipie30
More tips: Communication Problems message board
Problem: Your stuff and his stuff clash
Solution: Start thinking in terms of "ours," not "yours" and "mine"
"When we first moved in together, we had to solve a lot of style issues. I wasn't used to his stuff and my stuff coexisting. We figured out that we both had systems and quirks that sometimes would clash. The biggest change is that I now share everything: My space, my bathroom and even the ice in my freezer. Once you figure get used to the words 'ours' and 'we' -- the rest falls into place. --moogey
The biggest lesson you'll learn: It's not all about him, it's about you too! Moogey writes, "The best part about living with someone is that you learn a tremendous amount about yourself. You learn what you hate, what you really don't care about, and most of all, how you can resolve conflicts with someone you care deeply about."
Share your thoughts on the Living Together message board.
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