I recently heard about a trend in couples that seems to be catching on, where they technically don't live together. It was phrased as LAT or Living Apart Together, and I have to be honest, I am intrigued.
I have always valued my own space, and as difficult as it can be in this day and age, I will try to snatch a few moments of alone time when I can. The couples I have read about that have adopted this lifestyle seem happy, and from what it seems, it keeps the romance alive if you are not bickering about the washing up and the overflowing bin that needs taking out.
I have the advantage of my fella living upstairs from me, so it isn't a case of having to traipse across London with an overnight bag and a pair of matchsticks to keep my eyelids from drooping as it's been a mad day at work. We also have the added advantage of our almost adjacent flats having the bills included in our rents, so although it is in no way cheap, it is nice to (sort of) be able to afford to live this way for the time being.
But I also read that living this way can in the long term be a disadvantage, as then you never learn about compromise, adapting and moving forward with your life. You get so used to doing things your own way that in time it almost becomes impossible to change.
It has definately given me food for thought, as I have tried the whole cohabitating thing before and it obviously didn't work out. Would we be better off in society if we didn't live with our partners? Would relationships last longer if there wasn't the crazy need to coup up and settle down. Would my boyfriend despair of my bookworm tendancies, or would I wage war on his Playstation if we shared our living space. Or is this just borne from something selfish or from the refusal to grow up? Are we in the midst of a Peter Pan Generation trend? Are we so desperately clinging to our independence that we fear letting go will mean losing ourselves in the process?
As it stands at the moment, I am not sure which camp I am on. I will be honest and say it is nice to shut the door on the world from time to time, be surrounded by my own things and not have to worry that some of my little quirks will drive my fella to distraction. But at the same time I am not sure this is what I want for the whole rest of my life, living in a studio flat, with a neighbour (who isn't my fella on this occasion or we would have serious issues) who complains if I have a party on a Friday night. But for the time being the situation seems to suit, and as long as the rent doesn't sky rocket anytime soon, I suppose we should just enjoy this luxury. Once this time has passed we won't get it back, and there are not hundreds of 'bills included' flats out there for us to choose from. So all I can say on this matter is that for now... watch this space.......