Go West….to Chicagoland – in Two Apartments!

This Fourth of July weekend I and my beloved will be taking a trip to Chicago. I haven’t been there since I was a little girl and I’m very excited about this trip. The purpose of our journey is two-fold: First – we both really need a vacation. Second, we are considering relocating in a couple of years and Chicago is at the top of our list of places to go. Neither of us are particularly enamered with the pace, the style, the people or the price ($$$!!!) of the DC Metro area.

He and I have been discussing whether we want to live together. I would not feel comfortable cohabitating in a jurisdiction where courts have looked unfavorably on unmarried domestic partnerships upon their dissolution. While a few cities in Illinois have domestic partnership registries and give city employees benefits, Illinois is an unfriendly state for the unmarried. Furthermore, the domestic partnership registries are not always open to heterosexual couples!!!! That crap drives me nuts.

Here is our conundrum, since neither of us want to marry, and I don’t want to cohabitate in an unfriendly state (he is not wild about living together generally), what do we do? Is it weird to relocate with a partner of 4 years and not live together? Hell no! What do relocating and living together have to do with each other? We both want to live in a new place, neither of us would be financially supporting the other and there are no children involved, so why not continue to live separately, but in a new place? And a cheaper place that would actually make independent living easier, rather than harder!

Who says that two people in a romantic relationship have to live together? Well, no one actually says that, but people get paranoid after they have been together for a few years and they are not living together (or married) yet. There are certain benchmarks – even among the unmarried – that your relationship is supposed to hit after a certian period of time. The Cult of Couplehood is so strong that even I have to remind myself from time to time that I am not like other people. There are no rules to this thing. Get together with your partner and come up with an arrangement that works… and then work it!

FYI – I have a married friend who lives in Florida: she and her husband have separate apartments.


3 responses to “Go West….to Chicagoland – in Two Apartments!

  1. Oh my gosh. In my ideal relationship I live next door to my partner with a bridge between our two houses. In my fantasy we both live in tree houses and there is a rope bridge suspended between the trees.

    The only reason I have wanted to live with a man is for financial relief and practical considerations not because I enjoy that much togetherness. I do enjoy intimacy but I also see my home as a very personal expression of myself–like the way I dress. I don’t want to start dressing like my partner or wearing matching outfits (i know, some people do that so more power to them–not my thing) so I don’t know why we need to share a house. Maybe a really big house with two wings and a big room in the middle. That would be cool.

    I just read that Helena Bonham-Carter and Tim Burton live in adjoining apartments. That sounds perfect to me.

  2. We have something in common. Money is the only thing that ever makes me think about living with a man. That is no reason to do it. Even if I live in a one room dump (which I have before), it’s mine. My partner and I have also thought about living in adjoining apartments or maybe condos in the same development, or houses on the same street….

  3. I have been thinking about this so much lately! What can I say, going from living alone for 7 years to looking for roommates, it’s been on mind. Who says that the person you want to have a sexual/romantic relationship with is a good roommate for you? It’s not clear how it all fits together. My friends are really into the moving in milestones, and I agree, it could be nice in some situations. But if it’s NOT nice in your situation, does that mean they are not the person for you? Some people would really believe this…I loved my last boyfriend, but we didn’t want to live in the same area of the country. Many of my friends would say “well yes, he was a good boyfriend for a while, but when you find the REAL person for you, you’ll WANT to live with him, that’s how you KNOW.” This is bull. I’m supposed to completely discount a person and my relationship with them because we conflicting shower schedules and don’t want to live under one roof? That’s all I can say about it.

    My dream act of post-teenage rebellion would be to fall in love, get MARRIED, and live in different houses on the same block, just to show people we can.

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