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Lessons in Domestic Partnership

For many, domestic partnership is the next logical step in the relationship growth path after the dating stage. While it can be...

Amy C Written by Amy C · 1 min read >

For many, domestic partnership is the next logical step in the relationship growth path after the dating stage. While it can be cohabitating bliss, it can also be a near disaster if you don’t learn how to co-exist peacefully under the same roof. The “little things” may seem small at first, but when repeated on a daily basis, frustrations like dishes in the sink can definitely exacerbate quickly.

Here are a few lessons I’ve learned (and am still learning) along the way to keep a functioning home and resultantly, a happy relationship.

Money Matters – This uncomfortable conversation is one of the most important to have to discuss who puts in what, who takes care of bills, etc. There is no one solution – you have to find what works for you. The system will also need revisiting and adjusting as careers and financial situations change.

Communication – My friend Sunny recently told me, “You have to learn how to live, love and fight under one roof”. When arguing, your first instinct may be to leave the nest and stay elsewhere, but taking off doesn’t set a very good precedent in establishing a home with someone. Learning how to argue is important, and this may require laying down some house rules.

Chores – Instead of obsessively nagging your partner to do the dishes or make the weekend plans, determine the tasks you have a comparative advantage over. If you’re quick at doing the dishes and actually don’t mind it, perhaps that’s your task and your partner who loves making plans can be in charge of organizing dinner with the in-laws. Don’t take it personally – just get smarter and more efficient with the division of responsibility.

Staying Attractive – Sure, the courting phase is over, but living together is not a ticket to wear pajamas 24-7, talk in a baby voice or to pack on the pounds. If you want to keep the sparks continuing, make an effort in your appearance and hygiene.

Keep Your Individuality – Everyone needs his or her personal time. It may feel natural to do everything with your partner,  but it’s important to still have time with your girlfriends and vice versa. Give each other the opportunity to miss each other.

Photo credit: James Vaughan

Written by Amy C
Amy Chan is the Founder of Renew Breakup Bootcamp, a retreat that takes a scientific and spiritual approach to healing the heart. Marie Claire calls her "A relationship expert whose work is like that of a scientific Carrie Bradshaw" and her company has been featured across national media including Good Morning America, Vogue, Glamour, Nightline along with the front page of The New York Times. Her book, Breakup Bootcamp - The Science of Rewiring Your Heart, published by Harper Collins, will be released Fall 2020. Profile

3 Replies to “Lessons in Domestic Partnership”

  1. You are only truly loved and admired by your partner when s/he still loves you as you age, sag, packed on some weight, and even if you’ve lost a limb or two.

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