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Do's And Dont's Of Living Together

By Corina Bottcher, Mariah Green, and Darryl Cook

Posted on

1. DO divide up household labor between you and your partner!

By dividing up the housework, you and your partner will be able to work together to keep the house clean and the chores done without fighting about it. When you give out chores in an equal matter, you and your spouse will not feel overworked or like they are doing everything around the house. No one wants to clean everything!

2. DO keep your defensive responses to yourself!

When you become defensive and attack the personality or character of your partner, you stray away from the main problem and create more tension. When you call your partner names or bring things up that have nothing to do with the issue at hand, you begin to move the attention to them and not what you are actually mad about.

3. DON'T go to bed angry!

Not that you can't literally go to bed angry but conflicts should be resolved as quickly and completely as possible. You can sleep on it if you're especially heated, but don't forget about it completely. What seems to have blown over today may resurface in a couple months.

4. DO Appreciate your partner!


This is particularly important for couples that live together- don't stop appreciating your partner! If you get too comfortable and stop showing appreciation for each other, contempt can start to build up and eat away at the relationship. Even if you know you appreciate the things they do for you, remember to vocalise them so that they know.

5. DO keep communication open!

Open communication is important to the success of any relationship, especially for couples both married and non-married. This does not only mean that couples should talk to each other. But it also means that the way they talk to each other should be in a way to resolve conflict. The way they speak and act should be aligned with how they feel.

6. DO keep self-disclosure in mind!

Lack of self-disclosure from one or both parties or too much self-disclosure from one or both parties without considering their partner's feelings can cause conflict within your relationship. Self-disclosure is important in any marriage or cohabitating relationship because it helps open up communication. But on the other hand, too much self-disclosure can have a negative effect on the relationship if it is constantly disapproving and critical.

7. DON'T fall into gender role stereotypes!

Falling into gender role stereotypes can cause conflict within your marriage or cohabitating relationship. Stereotypes are nothing more than placing a specific gender into a specific role. Just because society says the wife cooks and cleans and the husband goes to work, does not mean this has to be the way your relationship works. Keep gender roles in mind and try to incorporate them into your life the way that your and your partner agree on, if you even plan to follow them at all.

8. DON'T end important relationships because you and your partner get married or move in together!

Just because you are married or in a cohabitating relationship, does not mean you have to drop all other relationships that you have with friends and family. These people probably mean just as much to you as your partner does, so keep those relationships! You will want time to yourself and time away from your partner. Family and friends are good people to spend this time with. Don't cut off prior relationships just because your find a significant other!

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