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Getting married but not living together? Complete insanity or the future?

(97 Posts)
DearJ0hn Thu 06-Dec-12 13:41:58

I have been with my OH a while now. I have two children and my own home and am very settled and happy. If I'm honest, I don't want to live with anyone for the foreseeable future. I like my own company, my own space, like doing things 'my way' and am fairly independent.

My partner is the same I suppose. Very independent, likes his own space, happy living alone.

We spend 4 or 5 evenings a week together on average. Speak every day. We are very happy together and all is well. And we are in agreement - we could see ourselves married but not living together. Not forever, but for the medium term.

Is this complete madness, even though it is something we BOTH want and ultimately it is what WE are happy with? is it too madly unconventional? I suppose you could say ' what is the point in being married? ' but I like the idea of it, the security, the bond etc.

What do you think?

PartridgeInASpicyPearTree Thu 06-Dec-12 15:56:05

I see. That would put me off if I were your DP as if the worst were to happen you would be entitled to a share of his house that you'd never lived in. Not at all suggesting you would do this, just for me I wouldn't take the chance as I've seen too many divorces get nasty!

SantaIAmSoFuckingRock Thu 06-Dec-12 15:56:33

and there wouldn't be the issue of both names being on both mortgages or deeds or whatever.

PartridgeInASpicyPearTree Thu 06-Dec-12 16:04:19

Actually I should have said "may be" entitled, not "would be". As I understand it courts have quite a wide discretion to decide on what would be a fair settlement, but once you are married the first port of call is not what you've paid in. The starting point is that it is one big joint pot of assets to shared fairly.

But, anyway, let's not go too far down this road of poor old DearJ0hn being divorced before she's even married blush

SantaIAmSoFuckingRock Thu 06-Dec-12 16:07:33

that's good to know partridge. i hadn't considered that. but yes, dont want to frighten anyone! grin

CarlingBlackMabel Thu 06-Dec-12 16:28:53

Santa - when you sign a marriage contract you sign up to sharing all your assets in one big marital, jointly owned pot.

Helltotheno Thu 06-Dec-12 16:56:44

Well if I were him, I wouldn't get married, he's the one with the asset. There's absolutely nothing wrong with doing what you're suggesting, I don't know why you don't just leave things as they are. But at least in this case, if you do get married, you're the one to gain if things go tits up grin

Madeleine10 Thu 06-Dec-12 17:04:07

We haven't lived together since we got together over 15 years ago. It's definitely doable and we got married six years ago, without changing the situation.

This is the best relationship either of us have ever had, very committed and happy. Marriage is about so much more stuff than whether you share the same space 24/7. We married to seal the bond and the commitment for life, not for any other reason, so I completely understand the way you are thinking. .

DearJ0hn Thu 06-Dec-12 17:12:11

Oooh madeleine! he first person who has done it! Excellent

Hell - ah yes. Makes a change eh? wink

Madeleine10 Thu 06-Dec-12 17:13:04

Regarding assets, I have always been the poorer one, and he is far more comfortable asset wise, and money wise. This ratio has been about the samethroughout our relationship.

Never once has it been an issue, and obviously I would never have married him (or he me, more to the point!) if we couldn't trust each other to be fair financially should the worst happen.

Given I was a single mum when we met, after a very bitter divorce, and he was doing well, no kids then both of us should be more cynical and protective of our own positions I suppose, but somehow it's never been an issue between us It's not always disaster and getting screwed over in these situations.

Pick your partners in life VERY wisely is all I can say, that is the inmportant bit, and the do what you both are happy with.

Madeleine10 Thu 06-Dec-12 17:14:34

Sorry, typing and grammar collapsing near the end of that post! grin

DearJ0hn Thu 06-Dec-12 17:17:15

Did you find it had any negative impact on your finances madeleine? Or any effect on things like WTC, despite the fact that you're not trying to evade anything by not living together?

Madeleine10 Thu 06-Dec-12 17:37:27

No , I didn't, DJ, but I'd guess this is pretty specific to our situation so don't quote me grin,

I had a good (ie well paid) job for a long time, plus of course child support (dragged kicking and screaming) from their (*spit*) Dad, so the WTC didn't affect me. When we married not much changed financially tbh.

We have the same separate accounts etc, but happily hand over money if the other hits hard times/sudden emergency, etc. The money may be kept seperately but it's "our" money nonetheless God it sounds mad and not a little naive now I'm writing it down! grin

My kids are over 18 now, and at the Uni stage, we trundle happilyon the same way, different houses, but we are actually considering pooling our resources and ...gulp..living together in the next few years. We are both quite nervous about it, but I guess it does make more financial sense now that my kids are not around all the time.

If I'm honest, emotionally it has been a wonderful choice, and I would do it again no question, but you do need to consider how you feel about the perhaps unnecessary expense of running two houses.

SundaysGirl Thu 06-Dec-12 18:05:26

This reminds me of a little saying I quite like.... 'Fuck the rulebook, I have my own plan'

grin

If it works for you both then why not eh?

Helltotheno Thu 06-Dec-12 19:32:38

it sounds mad and not a little naive now I'm writing it down

It's fine if neither one of you are likely to be left vulnerable, which you don't sound like you are.

Re living in different places, sounds like nirvana to me grin
As someone said above, it's more financial issues that would prevent more people from doing it!

Oblomov Thu 06-Dec-12 19:45:55

This all sounds fine op. But you did say you spend 4 or 5 nights together. So you don't live apart that much, do you? How much I independant parenting do you actually do? Not that much because your dp is only away from your children for 2 nights out of 7.

SorryMyLollipop Thu 06-Dec-12 19:46:20

Thank goodness for this thread! This is what I have been thinking for ages. I love my DP/BF but we live separately and I want to keep it that way. I just love my own space. Plus it makes it so much nicer and more exciting when we see each other , keeps the magic alive a bit IYSWIM.

grin great minds... grin

GoldQuintessenceAndMyhrr Thu 06-Dec-12 19:47:55

If it works for you, fine. But I dont think there is enough housing in the UK for this to be the future for families. Neither do I think most can afford it.

Oblomov Thu 06-Dec-12 19:49:34

I THINK that from a legal pov, by living togther for 5 out of 7 nights, you do actually live together and thus should be declaring all your earnings as a partnership to the tax credits people etc.

drmummmsy Thu 06-Dec-12 19:54:04

best mumsnet thread in ages! what a revelation! there are people just like me and dp out there - living apart, and it's just fine grin most people are like this hmm i'm looking at you dm

HappyAsASandboy Thu 06-Dec-12 19:55:10

There is another financial consideration.

A married couple can only have one designated main home, and if they sell the other one, there's likely to be capital gains tax to pay on the sale.

I'm not sure how this would work with one house owned and the other rented, but it might complicate things. I'd seek advice from a tax advisor (HMRC Enquiry Centre?) before marrying.

Madeleine10 Thu 06-Dec-12 20:07:06

Oblomov, that's interesting- I'm not sure of the rules on this.

If you see your partner in the evenings,and subsequently stay over at the same address 5 nights a week, but still maintain seperate households, can that be classified as "living together"? Even if it's stuill a bf/gf relationship?

I agree with Gold to some extent, it's certainly a more expensive way of living, due to paying for two houses, and is obviously cheaper to just live in one. But if that is how you were to start off with, as we were, then it made little difference really. I think it would be different if you were both young, and wanting to start a family together .

digerd Thu 06-Dec-12 20:08:39

OP stated 4-5 "evenings"

elastamum Thu 06-Dec-12 20:16:12

Am another one living apart from my DP. We live 1 1/2 hours apart. Both have children settled in school where we live so we commute backwards and forwards depending on what we / the children are up to. Each have our own house. Works well for us smile

elastamum Thu 06-Dec-12 20:18:04

What also annoys me though, is the assumption that our relationship isnt serious / going anywhere because we live apart hmm

Oblomov Thu 06-Dec-12 20:19:52

I appreciate op said evenings. It is highly likely that her dp goes to work, so is not at home during the day. My dh leaves at 6am and gets home at 6pm. Many do and dh's do.
Do you spend weekends together op? I hope you do. Only because weekends are just the best time, aren't they? For lie ins, coffee in bed, making love, lazing around. All the best bits !!

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