Let’s define what it means to play house because some people are confused…
Reason Number 1: Playing house means your treating your boyfriend like he is your husband. This means you are creating a premature, romantic environment without a solid commitment.
In the end, when it doesn’t work out, you will feel angry and resentful for all the sacrifice you made with someone you were just exclusively dating.
You can play house by moving in with a man before getting engaged or married, or you can you live in separate residences but you’re over each others house so much you might as well move in together, but you don’t.
In most cases, one partner in the relationship already lives in a comfortable situation where they get help paying their bills.
This gives them no incentive to shack up with you especially when you continuously pack a duffle bag every weekend to spend X amount of days at their house.
Yes, there are grown men over the age 30 who have roommates. The roommate is a handicap if you are hoping that your relationship will develop past the duffle bag stage.
On average, researchers of various cohabitation before marriage studies concluded that couples who lived together before they tied the knot saw a 33 percent higher rate of divorce than those who waited to live together until after they were married.
Part of the problem was that cohabitors slid into marriage by living together on a subconscious level. Living with someone requires sharing a life together, so if you’re going to move in together, why not just get married?
Your life will be completely merged anyways. Unless you’re like many people who play house who live with someone and find out months or even years later their boyfriend is $500k in debt and hiding assets to buffer the pain of his impending bankruptcy.
If you were to get married, all of this would have been discussed. Moving in together before marriage gives people the opportunity to skip those embarrassing and informative, much-needed conversation.
Reason Number 2: Avoid men who are over the age 30 and have roommates and men who are over the age 30 living with their parents. If they decide to move in with you, it’s probably because their roommate is moving out or their parents kicked them out. Don’t allow yourself to be a convenience.
I would advise avoiding these men like the plague because they will not see the value or the urgency in marriage or combining incomes and splitting bills if they are already afforded those benefits from a roommate.
In addition, I strongly recommend investigating why a grown man has a roommate. Does he have terrible credit? Is he always between jobs or does he have a history of inconsistent employment? Is he in debt over his head?
If he answers yes to any of those questions, you may want to ask yourself if you want to take on his burdens. Eventually, if the two of you decide to marry, his debt will significantly impact the quality of your life.
Reason Number 3: The other side of playing house with a man is giving them a copy of your keys or accepting a copy of their keys to their home before marriage or engagement. You might get excited when you should feel discouraged.
It’s nothing more than a front. It is not the real thing. It ain’t the real thing until there is a ring on your finger. Receiving a copy of a key to your boyfriend’s house is not equivalent to receiving a ring. Hello!
Receiving a key to a man’s house before you receive a proposal is an invitation to play house with him.
Politely decline the spare key if you want a ring in the near future.
Otherwise, you will be over his house cooking dinner, waiting for his kids at the bus stop, washing the dishes after he cooks and doing all the household duties only a wife who has the honor of his commitment should be doing.
Reason Number 4: It gets worse! After your finished playing house with your boyfriend, you have to go home to your house when he gets sick of you and repeat the same chores! Playing house is a lot of work. It’s a lot of traveling between two residences. Life is already hard enough. Playing house spoils your chances of ever getting married and it will exhaust you to no end!
Don’t be like me and drag your child along with you for those long weekends of playing house. That means you will be packing two duffle bags. Of course, playing house effects your child negatively as they see you “acting” as if your married but you’re really not.
The more time your child spends with you and your boyfriend playing house, the more attached they will get to that dynamic.
As soon as your boyfriend grows tired of you because you gave him wifey benefits with no commitment on his part, he will break up with you and totally disregard the feelings of any children involved. Including his own.
Imagine having to deal with your own broken heart and your child’s on top of that? Not worth it.
Your child deserves better. If you’re going to be foolish and play house, don’t involve your children.
Reason Number 5: Men and women have different expectations of what living together means. According to studies, 41 percent of live-in boyfriends report that they are not “completely committed” to their girlfriends, while only 26 percent of live-in girlfriends say they aren’t “completely committed.”
Men who move in with women say they are taking the relationship on a test drive while most woman believes it is the next step towards marriage. It’s important to be on the same page.
Besides, it’s absolutely ludicrous to make such a big move together and consider it a test run. What a royal waste of time.
A test-run to see what it’s like living with someone would be more like packing a bag and staying at their house for two weeks to see how well you get along. Signing a lease together is serious, there is nothing test worthy about it.
Accidental pregnancies happen quite more often with couples who live together without marriage. 41% of first births by unmarried women are born to cohabiting partners
The problem is, the man is not fully committed to the relationship and now he is outright being forced to become more committed with the birth of a child.
Two married people living together won’t totally freak out with the news of an unexpected pregnancy.
However, the man who is just living with you as a test drive might just ask you to get an abortion. Just because you live together does not mean he wants to spend the rest of his life with you, besides your giving him the entire cow without marriage so you become less and less appealing.
Some couples who move in together do end up married, however, almost 50% end in break up.
55% of different-sex cohabiters do marry within five years of moving in together. 40% break up within that same time period.
About 10% remain in an unmarried relationship for five years or more. – Smock, Pamela. 2000. “Cohabitation in the United States.” Annual Review of Sociology.
Reason Number 6: Moving in together before engagement or marriage creates an inevitable pressure that creates momentum toward marriage. The pressure makes the marriage inauthentic.
Once a couple’s lives are thoroughly entangled, some couples may decide to wed more out of guilt or fear than love. Men who propose before you move in with them are doing it from a place of authenticity.
They do not feel pressure to propose, they feel excited to propose. Men who have live in girlfriends feel obligated to marry them. Do you want to be chosen out of obligation or freedom of choice? I prefer the latter.
If you’re living together, splitting expenses and doing all the things married people do anyways – you are acting married – just get married already!
So, I guess playing house is a roll of the dice, I hope your one of the lucky ones who doesn’t crap out.
To each it’s own, but I’m strongly against it.
May the force be with you!
By Janell Hihi