The Next Big Step: What You Need To Consider Before Moving In With Your Partner

Making the decision of living with anyone that you're not required to cope with (aka parentals, sorry mom) is usually a rather precarious situation.

I'm sure the idea of moving in with your best friend may have sounded like the perfectly carved scenario and you were probably kicking yourself for not having thought of it long before.

However, the idea is quickly retracted as the rack of dirty dishes gets taller and she begins to openly welcome a stray of random hookups who murmur sweet nothings while nonchalantly chomping on your stash of garden salsa Sun Chips.

Nevertheless, I think we can still uphold that every relationship and experience is likely different on all spectrums. One experience that is particularly like no other is taking the inevitable next step in a relationship to move in together.

It's yet another scenario we paint with butterflies and compromise. Which, to my surprise, happens to be just that: lots of butterflies and lots of compromises.

The idea of being open to sharing so much of yourself and belongings in what may feel like a confined area, is probably the most frightening factor to consider when deciding to live day-in and day-out with your babe (besides knowing when and how you'll be able to go poop without an unintentional splash or sound echoing from the restroom).

If you're anything like me, who so cherishes time well spent alone and having a refuge to call my own, it is most definitely a challenging transition -- one which will make you anxious, stressed and stir-crazy, but mostly, just crazy.

Not the bad crazy (for the most part), but the good crazy that fuels us to get where we need to. The crazy that shall be evenly applied within both of your lives while you begin to conform and embark on what will undoubtedly be grueling and complex, but still so exhilarating and rewarding.

Every day is an adventure. Sharing your life right alongside someone you love is the learning and growing experience of a lifetime.

You learn to posses much more patience than you ever thought you could accumulate. You learn to become understanding, even when you don't want to be. You learn that not getting your way can sometimes work out for the better, and most importantly, you learn to become selfless.

Besides the repetitive reprimands and mixed dirty laundry, the toughest obstacle (at least for me) is becoming so comfortable and dependent on one another, that you often fail to honor the very things that make you, you.

By you, I mean the you that he or she fell in love with. The you that you don't want to lose sight of. The you that, like a flower, needs to be replenished with its longed essentials to grow, blossom and to sustain.

Prioritize the revitalizing life you share with your babe, while also keeping account of when you need your space. I cannot stress enough how vital it is to routinely dedicate some time to yourself. It is key in any thriving relationship.

We often take our time alone for granted and never really treasure the moments we can truly satisfy our own souls -- not to say that your significant other may not already be doing so. However, there really is no one who knows you better than you (as much as your partner would like to argue otherwise).

Whether it means you feel like sulking, writing in a journal, rocking out to an old high school playlist or just thinking aloud amongst your own space, use these moments to also date yourself. If the self-soul is fed, everything else will naturally fall into place.

The most common misconception is that moving in with a significant other is the absolute worst decision you can make because of the likelihood that you will both change, and romance will become nonexistent and you're basically doomed to calling it quits.

I won't deny that this may in fact happen, but what if you both do change? Change is growth, and who better to do that with than with your partner?

Romance or the "honeymoon phase" doesn't need to end just because that's what statistics have embedded in us. When you devote time to your babe and to yourself, the love you share will never go astray.

The butterflies in your tummy will flap even more profoundly, and home will be the place that will always make you skip a beat and fill you with a thrilling anticipation.

Home will be him or her.

Living together will sure as hell not be a walk in the park; it's more like a walk on the beach. It is sometimes lumpy and your feet sink, requiring more effort and strength to move forward, but the scenery of it all is breathtakingly beautiful, making it all so worthwhile.

Photo Courtesy: Flickr/Chelsea Meadows