My boyfriend and I recently decided to take the step towards cohabitation.
You know, living together. Under the same roof. Sharing a bathroom. Letting him have access to my Netflix queue. And mostly, trying not to fight about whose turn it was to eat the leftover burrito from Chipotle.
So with great decisions, comes great responsibility: like figuring out what will and will not make the journey from our separate living quarters into the one we will share.
All the sudden, I’m having flashbacks to kindergarten, my teacher preaching from the pulpit sermons of compromise and open communication. I’m begrudgingly trying to set aside my dreams of having my apartment look like a floor model from Home Goods, slowly realizing that this step is something that needs to be taken together, bringing in elements and pieces from our pasts in order to build our future.
But that doesn’t mean there is going to be putting a nine-foot tall cardboard cut-out of LeBron James in my entryway. Not on my watch.
And in an effort to not totally deter all men from moving in with women because they won’t allow sports trinkets to sneak into their boxes, I’ve realized there’s a list of things girls probably should avoid if they want to make this transition a happy, healthy, and lasting one.
When living with your significant other, keep these things in mind:
The bathroom is a sacred place and he’s going to be in there a lot. While girls tend to get a bad reputation for taking too long to get ready, boys have a tendency to spend the better part of a year in the bathroom with no consequences attached.
Make sure your bathroom is neat, organized, and promotes healthy cleaning habits. With that being said, it’s probably a good idea not to have the main bathroom decoration be a collection of tampons of varying shapes and sizes.
Along the same lines, having a calendar is a good way to keep track of when you and your significant other will be in and out of the city. You can each have a color marker and a corresponding color-coded key. You’ll have so much fun adding all the different appointments you both have throughout the month if you have OCD, like me, or are just a twenty-five year old who still appreciates coloring.
This calendar, however, would not be an ideal place to mark when your Time of the Month is taking place with big, red X’s along with a corresponding color-coded key that says they mean you probably won’t have sex that week.
Decorating is the shit. I mean, girls practically pee their pants at the thought of bringing in new patterns, textures and colors to their living rooms. Moving into a place with your boyfriend pretty much signifies you’ve almost entered adulthood, so you’ll want your new place to look sophisticated as hell.
Decorative pillows are a fun way to infuse color into a room without going overboard. These decorative pillows should not be in the form of stuffed animals that were given to you by ex-boyfriends on past Valentine’s Days.
Chandeliers are classy. But chandeliers solely consisting of old Beyonce cds and candles you used for that seance at a sleepover when you were seventeen are not a way to signify you’re a high class broad.
Physically living with your boyfriend means you don’t have to have pictures of you and him together littering your apartment. This does not mean you should have pictures of your exes around your apartment in frames labeled “Memories” and “Good Times.”
Coffee tables are a great place to establish yourself as a cultured, well-read human being. Avoid having Cosmopolitan be the only magazine allowed in the apartment.
Above all, respect each other. That’s like important, I think.