More and more young adults are choosing to live with their significant other before contemplating marriage. On the upside, cohabiting is economically sensible—at least compared to living solo—since you get to split the bills. It’s also a legitimate relationship milestone. Inevitably, however, sharing a home is a test as to whether or not you can bear to spend a vast majority of your spare time breathing the same air as your partner. If you think it’s all roses and puppies, listen to these 10 folks who just moved in together admit what they already can’t stand about it.
1. Lara, 23
Brad falls asleep with chewing tobacco in his mouth almost every night. By morning it’s all over the sheets, so we wake up to a bunch of stains that look way too much like shit. I wish I could think of his habit as cute or funny, but just picturing our bedding makes me want to vomit.
2. Stella, 30
My opinion of my fiancé changed dramatically the day he revealed the “art” he wanted to display on our living room wall: An illustration of two pro golfers, Jack Nicklaus and Arnold Palmer, in their toddler years, crawling across the greens. What artist decides to draw the baby versions of two athletes past their prime, wriggling across a golf course? More importantly, who the hell buys that kind of crap? I sincerely considered calling the wedding off the second I laid eyes on that thing.
3. Tom, 28
I recently quit smoking weed, but my girlfriend’s a certified stoner. We live in a studio apartment and I can’t tell you how infuriating it is to open the door to our bathroom, desperate to take a leak, only to find her seated on the toilet, casually smoking a bowl.
4. Maggie, 25
The first few weeks, our place was a graveyard for Ikea mishaps because Sam kept messing things up. Do you know what a disappointment it is to realize you’re the one in the relationship who has to assemble all the furniture? I realize this sounds totally anti-feminist, but I wish I had a man who could build. I’m sad I’m the one who has to fix and install everything.
5. Pascal, 27
Ever since we moved in together, my boyfriend’s been stocking up on pots and pans made by this fancy French company, Le Creuset. The spending annoys me mostly because that’s the stuff you’re supposed to get through your wedding registry! I told him this morning that if he doesn’t stop buying kitchen utensils, I’ll have to stop having sex with him. Then I explained that he can get all the Le Creuset products he wants—as soon as we’re able to register for them. Hopefully he gets the hint and puts a ring on it.
6. Peter, 34
Historically, I’ve been one of the worst roommates in the world. Karma got the best of me when I moved in with a woman yet more inconsiderate and boorish than myself. You don’t know what insanity is until you’ve been hectored for neglecting to hang your dress shirts in the same direction, failing to color code piles of old t-shirts, or folding socks incorrectly. Did you know there’s a “correct” way to fold socks?! I think I’ve said “Who gives a shit?” 5,000 times in the last week alone.
7. Lindsay, 33
The most alarming aspect of living together has been the realization that neither of us wants to watch TV at the same time. And in the rare chance that we do, we don’t want to watch the same things. A week in, on the brink of insanity, we purchased a house iPad. Now I’ll watch the iPad in bed while he watches Charlie Rose or some other mind-numbingly boring program. Sporadically, we make random comments to each other while doing our own thing three feet away from each other. It’s either adorable, or borderline dysfunctional.
8. Katherine, 24
I work long hours and since my live-in boyfriend works from home, we agreed from day one that he’d be in charge of the laundry. But my man washes clothes at the same rate he speaks to his mom—once a month, at most—and with the same insufferable attitude. As the weeks go by and our laundry piles up, our place starts to reek. I have to open all the windows even when it’s below zero because no amount of Febreeze can cut through the stench of so much dirty underwear.
9. Adam, 35
It turns out that our sleeping patterns are totally misaligned. My girlfriend wants to fall asleep at 10pm every night, and I want to read in bed until midnight. Allegedly, the eye mask I bought her doesn’t sufficiently block out the light (though she insists on wearing it anyway). She moved in with me, but I’m the one collecting spare pillows to convert the bathtub into a makeshift couch so I can get some reading done. The other night I actually fell asleep in there! I’m not sure our relationship will last unless we get a bigger apartment—stat.
10. Natalie, 31
Greg greeted me at the door the other day to say he had “something special” for me. As he pulled me by the arm into our bedroom, I started imagining the awesome, spontaneous afternoon sex we were about to have. But then he dropped my hand, walked to the closet, opened the door, and yelled “surprise!” with a huge smile on his face. He had clearly spent the entire day working on it. He even went out to Bed Bath & Beyond to buy special organizational cubes for my shelves. I don’t mind that I’m dating the world’s biggest neat freak, but I do resent the implication that I’m incapable of sorting my own stuff.