Obviously, moving in with your SO comes with a slew of rewards — getting more QT together, not having to shlep all your stuff back and forth to each other’s abodes every weekend (#bagladystatus), and enjoying a good morning smooch upon waking up every single day. That said, there are some potential pitfalls as well — like having less privacy, dealing with each other’s weird habits you were previously unaware of, and also possibly witnessing the fire fizzle out a bit. Which begs the question, do relationships lose passion when you move in together?
It’s a common fear — and it makes sense, too. After all, when you live separately, there’s more inherent excitement around your time together because you’re seeing each other less frequently. Once you transition into your new phase as roomies, however, that thrill may feel like it’s wearing off. You start seeing each other in every possible state. You get comfortable. Falling asleep and waking up next to each other starts to wear off a tad. And while it’s totally normal to feel like you’re no longer in that stage where you can’t keep your hands off each other, it’s another thing entirely to feel like you’re basically just friends who live together.
Fortunately, according to Pricilla Martinez, CEO of Regroop Online Life Coaching, there can be a positive aspect to a slight decrease in passion.
“Passion can sometimes be replaced by comfort,” she tells Elite Daily. “It’s not necessarily a negative transition.”
That said, she stresses that it’s super important not to accidentally send the message to your SO that you no longer desire them.
“Make sure your partner knows you want them,” she adds. “Have days where the devices are not allowed. Talk to one another. Find ways to connect.”
When the passion starts to fizzle after a couple moves in together, the problem often stems from a lack of novelty, according to Martinez. Since you’ll be spending a lot more time around each other, that will obviously remove some of the mystery in your relationship — which means it’s more important than ever to shake things up. It’s all too easy for couples who cohabit to start falling into routines, whether that means getting takeout from the same restaurant on Fridays, doing the same thing on date night, or sticking to the same basic formula when it comes to sex. Routine is what inevitably leads to boredom, and boredom is basically poison for passion. So it goes without saying that if couples can keep looking for ways to try new things while living together, they will likely be able to keep that spark alive.
“Yes, you can have a weekly date night, but change up the activity each week,” says Martinez. “You don’t always have to do dinner and a movie. Get adventurous.”
In fact, one 2000 study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, which examined the effects of shared participation in novel activities on relationship quality, proves this very point. The social psychologists who conducted the study asked couples to complete an obstacle course together while bound to each other at their wrists and ankles, and then measured their feelings of satisfaction before and after the task. What they found is that these couples reported a greater increase in feelings of love and satisfaction in comparison to couples who completed a more mundane task. Engaging in new experiences with bae can inspire passion because it allows you to see different sides of each other while learning about each other in the process.
“A lot of couples stop claiming their sexual partners because they feel they’ve already figuratively looked behind the curtain,” adds Martinez. “Make sure they remember there’s something different every time they look.”
So, is sharing novel experiences the key to reigniting passionate love? It certainly can’t hurt. The bottom line is, moving in together is bound to change your relationship somewhat, and some of those changes will be wonderful — like an increase in bonding time and the potential for greater emotional closeness. However, one of the other possible changes is a decrease in passion. Not every couple will experience this to the same degree, of course, but it's extremely common.
The good news? There is something you can do about it. Make an effort to try new things with your boo, whether that means a different restaurant or a different sex position. Make an effort to surprise them, whether by cooking them breakfast in bed, or leaving a flirtatious note in their lunch bag. The more you introduce novelty into your relationship, the more romantic it will feel to be roomies.