First comes the engagement, then comes the marriage and then comes the moving in together. It’s not easy sharing your home with another person, even if that person is your significant other.
I mean, this is your safe place. Your sanctuary! Everything has its place, and you can’t imagine having to shuffle things around just to fit in some of your partner’s stuff. But hey, you said it: “till death do us part”. It’s going to happen sooner or later! Here’s how you can cope with it.
Communication is key
Here’s what to keep in mind. Needless to say, it’s pretty obvious that your taste and your partners may not exactly line up perfectly. It’s like the classic Ella Fitzgerald song, you like tomato, and they like tomahto. But hopefully, you won’t need to call the whole thing off because, in the end, this is just another step that will bring you closer to building your new life together.
As they start moving in, try not to make any faces (as tempting as that is) at their items of choice and always keep honesty priority. Of course, you can’t point at their armchair and claim that it is “the ugliest thing” you have ever seen.
That won’t work. Trust me.
Eh, you live and you learn.
Instead, express how you feel and help them understand why this piece of furniture doesn’t go with the rest of the room. You don’t want to end up with three different colored couches and a red plaid leg rest. There will be a lot more furniture, but still, the same amount of space so choose carefully.
Speaking of choosing…
How do you calmly and gently settle on what stays and what goes? I don’t care how big of a hoarder you or your partner are because at the end of the day, there’s going to be a lot less furniture and I’m sorry to say that some of yours will have to go! One way to figure what to keep is to both agree that you love it. For instance, you both really enjoy the coffee table from Pottery Barn, so you both decide to keep it. You can always pick a few things that are dear to you and are utterly irreplaceable. It could be a family heirloom or something you’ve had since your college days.
And no, you can’t pick everything in the room, that’s not how it works. By both taking turns saying what stays and what goes, you’ll find out more about each other’s style and figure everything out together.
Prepare for trouble, and make it double
Ok, so now you got two mattresses, two (or three) couches, two tables, two coffee machines…you get the idea. In this scenario, you can always pick depending on how much space is available. The size of the item is important because now it will be serving two people. If your home is spacious, you can then check the condition and quality of the item. Is it worn out, is it new? Can it last a few more months, let alone years?
4 hours and six arguments later
Hey, I didn’t say this was going to go smoothly.
At this point, you both have probably disagreed on…a lot? Yeah, a lot sounds good. You’re probably thinking one of you has to give and no way in hell it’s going to be you!
Relax, what if I told you there’s a way where you both can be (slightly) satisfied?
You might not like it but here are some options:
- You let your partner have it their way. It’s simple; you love them so much that you’re willing to let them keep their foosball table or that weird painting of puppies they got for sale at Michaels.
Hey, it happens, I’ve been there.
- The 3 Re-s. Repaint, remodel and recover. You might not like an item because of its color or how old it looks, but somewhere deep down you’d be willing to accept it if were retouched.
Hey, another Re-.
- You both don’t agree, so you sell, donate, or burn it. The last one is a little too intense but I’ve seen things…
This is your last resort because if you can’t keep your teardrop table lamp, then neither can they. Go big or go home!
Kidding, that’s an entirely different article.
- Shopping! Buy something entirely new that you both agree on.
Before the big move, you probably had the perfect vision to make your home the perfect home. Granted, you won’t say eye to eye on everything, but always remember what led you here in the first place. This is going to be your new home and your children’s first home! Memories are just waiting to be created.
The beginning will undoubtedly be rough, but what beginning isn’t? Believe me when I say, in a few months, it won’t even matter and you’ll just be glad you’ve got the love of your life laying down right there beside you.