She'd had more than a few bad relationships, and the last one had died a slow, painful death over the course of three long years, in a tiny apartment that seemed even more suffocating when she and her boyfriend were fighting. And because I knew the research, the very fact that she had so many misgivings was more than enough to give me pause as well. Prior to 2000, many people might have advised Sharon against moving in with her boyfriend, no matter how well they'd been getting along.
The research findings on premarital cohabitation were dismal.
A recent University of Columbia study suggests that many young couples may be choosing this very solution, opting for "stayover" relationships where they spend three or more nights a week together while maintaining their own separate residences. Bear in mind, you probably have a thousand quirks of your own that your partner may have to adjust to, so don't ask for changes unless you're prepared to work on some yourself. When it comes to chores, we're often blind to what others do and acutely aware of our own contribution.
To make matters worse, some chores are less visible than others (dusting and vacuuming sometimes go unnoticed.) So decide what you want to do and state out loud or record on paper what you've done.
Some cohabitors, it seems, are more equal than others, with one group showing all the telltale signs of disaster that previous research had revealed, and another, luckier group, living happily ever after.