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Marriage Vs Cohabitation: Separating Fact From Fiction About The Rules For Living Together

We all love differently and it doesn’t always have to result in a marriage. When it comes to marriage vs cohabitation, almost everyone has their opinion. Though, before you focus on the differences – take a step back and acknowledge the foundation of both the scenarios. It is love that initiates them and somehow, even connects them together.

If you think marriage is not for you, then it’s absolutely fine. It is the biggest decision of your life and no one except you should have the prerogative to make this choice. Though, I strongly believe that just because you have decided not to marry, it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t have to fall in love as well. One should always be open to the idea of love. Cohabitation will make you cherish the true essence of love without compromising on anything at all.

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Nevertheless, cohabitation is so much more than living together or sharing your bread and butter with someone. Sometimes, it can be as significant as any other marriage. Before you take a step ahead in your relationship, get yourself familiar with the significant facts associated with cohabitation.

1. It’s more than just sharing a bed

couple in bed_New_Love_Times

Image source: Google, copyright-free image under Creative Commons License

A lot of people assume that having a live-in relationship with someone is just about sex and food. No, it is more than just having a convenience of sex. It is a commitment in itself and is associated with a major life-changing step. Cohabitation can make you a pragmatic individual without letting you compromise with your personal space. It is about sharing your whole life with someone else. In a lot of aspects, it is nothing less than a marriage. It all depends on how you perceive the idea of a live-in relationship.

2. It doesn’t always result in a marriage

If you are moving-in with someone with a thought of spending your whole life with them without any complication, there is nothing wrong with it. But at the same time, if marriage is your ultimate goal and the “moving-in” is just a phase for you, then you should definitely have a conversation with your partner. Let them know how you imagine your life and what is your definition of getting “settled” in life is.

Cohabitation isn’t supposed to result in a marriage. It is a romantic arrangement in itself. For a lot of people, it is as good as it can get, because that is how they have imagined their future. You really need to know what you want before you take that big step.

3. You have a fear of fallout

couple in bed_New_Love_Times

Image source: Google, copyright-free image under Creative Commons License

It is a common misconception that cohabitation doesn’t give the kind of emotional and financial stability that is associated with a marriage. Yes, after getting married to someone, you may feel you are wrapped in a more warmer security blanket, but we can’t generalize everything like that.

People fall in and out of love way too easily these days. A marriage can give you a piece of paper, but the chance of having a divorce is always there. The same applies to cohabitation. The fear of a fallout always looms large. You are not going to have sleepless nights with the thought of losing the one you love. Move past your ideas of marriage vs cohabitation and make your own rules.

4. Cohabitation is not a hassle-free marriage

It has been said time and time again that cohabitation is for those who can’t take all those responsibilities that come with a marriage. I don’t think I’m the right person to comment anything on this, but I do know that a committed relationship is as important as any marriage. If your heart’s not in it, then even the most honest of vows won’t stop you to sabotage your marriage.

Every committed relationship comes with its own responsibilities. It is anything but hassle-free. You have fallen in love with someone and have given them the ability to destroy you. This is quite a risk in itself. One wrong move and you might end up losing your partner forever. Being in love is not that easy and cohabitation has its own pros and cons.

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5. It won’t give you an assurance

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Image source: Pinterest

But neither does a marriage! Being in love with someone and spending your whole life with them is a risky move. You might get your heart broken and develop some serious abandonment or trust issues as well. Things can get messy, both in a marriage as well as in a live-in relationship.

Just because there is a risk of failing, it doesn’t mean that you are not supposed to try. True love is always worth the risk. Cohabitation might not give you an assurance. There won’t be any vows that you have to fulfill. You won’t wear a ring to remind you of the one you love. But you what, if you love someone, you don’t need a ring to remind you of them. You don’t need those wedding vows to let you know the difference between what’s right and wrong. Even when you are in a committed relationship, you know where the line is.

Cohabitation might not give you the assurance you want, but  if you really love someone, you don’t really need any kind of assurance at all. All you got to do is trust them and that should be enough.

6. It is not supposed to be easy

You would be responsible for a lot of things in your live-in relationship. Just like any other married couple, you would be taking care of a thousand things. Rent, food, bills, travel plans, personal space, emotional connect, and what not. Cohabitation will test your relationship. It will push your limits. You would be asked to walk an extra mile just to make your partner happy. It will teach you to be selfless. You would have the dirtiest of fights with your partner and might argue about almost everything. But if your relationship is true and you know you are with “the one”, it would be worth it. All your efforts would be worth it.

7. Cohabitation is not a “temporary” marriage

couple in love_New_Love_Times

Image source: Google, copyright-free image under Creative Commons License

It is one of the most common myths associated with cohabitation. People often use terms like “almost marriage” or “temporary marriage” for it. They think it has a pre-defined time frame and that some day or another, it would come to an end.

Here’s the truth – it doesn’t have to end. Your live-in relationship doesn’t come with an expiry date. You can be with your partner as long as you want. The two of you can make a list of your own rules to follow. Yes, your friends and family might not be on board so easily, but they would come around. You just need to let them know your perception. Cohabitation doesn’t need to be a temporary solution for anything. There should never be a debate regarding marriage vs cohabitation. They have their own pros and cons, and one can pick whatever they want.

8. It has its own legitimate rules

One of the misconceptions regarding cohabitation is associated with the basic legal norms. Every country (or state) can have their own laws regarding cohabitation. There are a lot of places in which cohabitation is not considered as a legal move. There are strict laws regarding everything from the degree of an assault to the fiscal division. In some countries, people can simply move-in with their partner, whereas, in most of the places, you need to take the permission of your landlord before making a move.

There are also dedicated laws regarding child care and custody. Just because you are living with someone, doesn’t mean that you are not entitled to all these crucial things. Get to know about cohabitation laws in your state to expand your knowledge.

9. Marriage is not for everyone…

woman holding a ring_New_Love_Times

Image source: Pixabay, under Creative Commons License

Marriage should not be the ultimate goal of your life. I can’t create a blueprint of your future, but as long as you are doing something to be self-satisfied or happy, then you don’t need to change. Not everyone in this world is supposed to marry. Just because you were told as a kid that someday you need to walk down the aisle, doesn’t mean that you have to follow their orders. It should solely be your decision.

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10. … but neither is cohabitation

Just like marriage is not for everyone, the same way, cohabitation is not supposed to be the obvious choice as well. If deep within, you know that you have to marry your partner, then you should not let any other force in this world come in your way. A live-in relationship might make you question the mere existence of love. You can get suffocated with someone and it can make you scared to death.

Is cohabitation as good as marriage?

Yes and no. For some, it can mean so much more than a marriage. For others, it can be one of those forgettable phases as well.

This is one such question that only you can answer. What do you want to do?

Now when you know what a live-in relationship really feels like, you would make your move only when you are ready for it.

Featured image source: Pixabay, under Creative Commons License

Article Name
Marriage Vs Cohabitation: Separating Fact From Fiction About The Rules For Living Together
When drawing the tally for marriage vs cohabitation, one should know it is apples and oranges, really!
Bhavya Kaushik

Bhavya Kaushik

A national bestselling author, Bhavya believes that too often the stories we write paint the reality we try to escape from. Bhavya believes in breaking the stereotypes and trying new things because life is too short to let it stay boring. With his love for verse, he can be found avidly blogging about life, love and everything that covers in between. He lives his life by the motto, 'I'm the story of my own journey.' "I don't write stories. I write characters."