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Living Together First Won’t Ruin Your Marriage

Getty Images/Dan Kitwood

This is great news for a lot of ‘lived together before getting hitched’ folks!

All these years, I thought, oh no, according to statistics, my future marriage is going to be doomed because I want to live with my future husband first.  It was not a great feeling knowing that stats showed that to be true…but I truly felt like living together first was imperative before choosing someone to share my life with FOREVER.  So, that’s what I did. I ignored the statistics and after about 2 years of dating, my then-boyfriend, now- husband, moved in with me.  We actually had a great transition, no major problems, and living together prior to marriage, was definitely the right move for us!

Thankfully, a new study from Time Magazine says that living together first, is a-ok!

Arielle Kuperberg, assistant professor of sociology at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, says the important factor here, is not whether or not couples decided to live together first, it’s what age they moved in together.

She says “It turns out that cohabitation doesn’t cause divorce and probably never did, what leads to divorce is when people move in with someone- with or without a marriage license- before they have maturity and experience to choose compatible partners and to conduct themselves in ways that can sustain a long-term relationship.”  Kuperberg says it’s not wise to get married or move in together before the age of 23.

"For every year a woman waits to get married, right up until her early 30s, she reduces her chances of divorce. "

Economist Evelyn Lehrer from the University of Illinois-Chicago weighs in on the conversation too, she says “the longer people wait past 23, the more likely a marriage is to stick.”  She also had this to say, which makes me feel a lot better about being a woman who got married for the first time at 31 years old… “for every year a woman waits to get married, right up until her early 30s, she reduces her chances of divorce.” 

I understand that it may not be for everybody, and that’s ok.  Everyone is different.  I am very glad we lived together first though.  It made our relationship better, easier and I think we’re a happier married couple now because of it!

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