Source: chris clinton via cosmopolitan.com
I think it needs to be said that I was basically a boy for the better part of my youth. I was a young tomboy, and not in the way Joey Potter from Dawson’s Creek or P.J. from My Boys were. I was not a lithe and graceful low-maintenance beauty who could prance around in t-shirts, jeans, and no make up and look like I belonged on a magazine cover. I was not fresh-faced and good to go with just a berry lipstick trotted out on special occasions. I was awkward and frizzy-haired with hips and breasts at a young age, taller than everyone, routinely putting on 20 pounds before a growth spurt in which I sprouted up 4 inches. My guy friends weren’t attracted to me, didn’t harbor secret crushes on me, and didn’t end up as my friends-with-benefits (aside from those one or two sloppy, drunken bad ideas).
This was so much the case that I actually had one of my friends say, “Yeah, you’re a girl, but I don’t really think of you as one. So you don’t count.” (Cha-ching. That was like 6 years’ worth of therapy right there. Dude, you owe me one big fat check. Or a massive cocktail.) But the cool thing about it – besides having wonderful friends and pressure-free escorts to any last minute events – was that I eventually got to experience how guys talk to each other when all the girls leave the room. Most of you girls think you know what that sounds like, but trust me -you don’t. I heard the shocking, the ugly, the depressing, the infuriating, and even the surprisingly poignant. It was… educational. Sort of. It certainly was ethnographic, at the very least.
On the list of the most stressful life events, moving in with a significant other is somewhere near the top. I can personally attest that it’s there for good reason. Moving in with a boyfriend or girlfriend is extremely different from living with roommates, and I know couples who’ve broken up because they jumped in without being fully ready. If you’re about to move in with your significant other or you’re considering it, here is some hard-earned wisdom from my first year of cohabitation.
Assess whether or not you’re actually ready to move in together. I mean for real.
Have you been together less than a year? Stop reading this. You’re not ready. I’m serious, just don’t. Hit the one year mark and then we’ll talk.
Haven’t had real, productive fights yet? Get out of here now.
Are you moving in because one of you just got kicked out of your current living space or is going through some major transitional period or is short on cash and needs a place to live? Find another solution, even if it’s temporary. Moving in because you “have” to is just going to add undue stress to an already stressful situation and possibly lead to a breakup that could otherwise have been prevented.
Source: iStockPhoto via Forbes.com
If you’re anything like me, you were shocked to discover that dating in your twenties is nothing like dating in high school or college. For one thing, the stakes are higher — people start talking about the future and it’s not some distant, made-up thing. Some people are looking for things that you are not looking for, or vice versa.
It’s also a lot more ambiguous, particularly if you’re not on the same page but unaware of it. And even if it’s clear-cut from the beginning, spoiler alert: some relationships end.
The upside to breaking up when you’re still attending classes is if you get publicly upset, people give you a break. I was in high school only for the era of America Online profiles and away messages, but I can only imagine it’s gotten more explosive and emotional since then, what with Facebook, Twitter, and the fact that everyone has a blog. The point is, there is a certain part of your life where it’s completely normal to have a sobbing fit in the cafeteria after you’ve been dumped. But as you age, and break-ups actually hurt more because you’ve invested time and dreams into them, you’re supposed to be mature and calm.
But how do you do it? How do you keep your 9-to-5 when getting out of bed feels impossible? Your blog writer has been in the trenches so you’ll hopefully have a better path. Here are my (totally unprofessional) tips: