Sunday, 8 December 2013

Together apart

Gee, there's lots of pressure on couples these days to start cohabitation. To make a stand for permanent commitment. To provide status updates to interested parties.  Questions come from almost day one and gain intensity with every passing month.

The reality is for many that the combining of lives is really not that simple...It was, back in the day of one person and a suitcase.  But in the case of the re partnered there's so many other considerations that the romantic notions of ''just move in!'' can be overshadowed by the realities of what that actually entails.  So it's usually a far greater decision to be made, the more people/mortgages/pets/kids are involved no matter how appealing the idea of sharing space might be.

In fact I'd argue there's probably a certain ease in maintaining two households - essentially living separate lives for part of the week and then coming together to enjoy a paired life just some of the time.  It's not the norm, and it raises eyebrows.  Apparently it implies some kind of lack of commitment.  I'd argue differently. Surely there's more commitment in saying ''let's take time, this is working OK now - we're here for the long term even if we don't know what that might look like'' than to leap into shared accommodations when the timing isn't quite right just because it appears to be the next logical step - or the most convenient option.

Two friends of mine have been doing this for coming on three years - it probably won't be for ever, but for now, with the commitments they each have to their own careers, houses, families and interests, it works.   It's not a part time relationship - emotionally they are committed to each other for keeps - but yes, the ability to blend their lives, is, for now less than full time.

It seems to me that in some ways it's the best of both worlds - each person gets to pursue the things they want to alone but still enjoy each other in a far less pressured environment than the re partnered/blended family usually affords.  It might be for a short time, it might be long term, but as long as both are happy with the arrangement, then I say it's a win win.


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