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Thinking about moving in together and we've gone into tailspin

(61 Posts)
happytourer Wed 06-Jul-11 11:46:29

DP and I have been seeing each other for about 9 months. Things have been going well, we had our first holiday planned together. DP lives about 30 miles away, hardly a long distance relationship, but it’s becoming an issue. I don’t have a car, so I travel by train.

This weekend we had an argument about the future. We’ve discussed the idea of moving in together. DP works long hours, night shifts, etc (DP’s a doctor) and wouldn’t want to be the one to commute, which leaves the option of me moving to DP’s town.

In the past, I had a relationship where for two years I ended up living in a town I didn’t want to be in, about 35 miles from work, and without friends there, I felt isolated, even if they were only an hour away on the train. I was very miserable, and the relationship ended. I therefore have an instinctive reluctance to do the same again, move to a town thirty miles away from my work and my friends. The 30 miles is more of a psychological barrier, but it feels a big one to me.

DP thinks that if I’m not going to move, then, ultimately there’s not much of a future. DP also said that if we were right for each other, the distance wouldn’t be an issue. As far as DP is concerened, it’s only half an hour on the train to my town and then a bit more to the office. We are both fixed in our jobs until 2014, and I’m 31, DP’s 32, so we’re both reluctant to spend the next 3 years having a “weekend relationship”. Since we’ve had this argument, it feels as if we’ve gone into a tailspin. If we’re not going to move forward in the near future, let’s end it. I was taking a more “let’s see how it goes” approach.

Is this all doomed, or is this a mountain out of a molehill?

NotActuallyAMum Wed 06-Jul-11 11:52:59

How about you move to a completely new place halfway between your workplaces so that you both have the same commuting commitment?

happytourer Wed 06-Jul-11 11:55:27

Thanks for that. The partial problem with that is that DP is more fixed with housing, whereas I rent and could move more easily to "see how it goes". Also, we're in the south west, and there aren't many places in between

NotActuallyAMum Wed 06-Jul-11 12:06:45

Hmm...I see

It just seems to me that he's being very selfish - he's said he "wouldn't want to be the one to commute". Well, neither do you! So as far as he's concerned it's his way or the highway?!

NotActuallyAMum Wed 06-Jul-11 12:08:19

How about quoting him back to himself:

"If we were right for each other, the distance wouldn’t be an issue"

Surely that works both ways?

happytourer Wed 06-Jul-11 12:16:08

I can see how that looks from one perspective, but I work at fairly standard 9 to 5 (that leaves me enough time to be on Mumsnet), whereas DP has to work night shifts, and after 12 hours, I tend to agree it would be unfair to drive four an hour to get home, whereas it does logically make more sense for me to be the one to commute.

adelaidegirl Wed 06-Jul-11 12:20:24

I can see both sides of the arguement but I think there are possible solutions. He needs to be a bit more mature and less melodramatic about it I think though! Having done a 30+ mile commute for a year while working on shifts I can say that I would never do it again if I could possibly avoid it so I can see where he is coming from- it is hideous and not very safe (although lots of doctors do it for long periods).

On the other hand it should not feel like you are making all the sacrifices. Is he close enough to cycle to work so you could use the car at least some of the time?

9 months is reasonably quick to be moving in together and I think he is being a bit daft saying there is no point in continuing if you are not going to move to his town. If he genuinely is not happy to wait a few more months before making such a big decision then maybe you should ask him how committed HE is. I am not sure that this is neccessarily a decision that needs to be made right now either- I think your wait and see might not be the worst idea.

Hope you work it out x

happytourer Wed 06-Jul-11 12:23:39

I think DP is concerned that my position isn't likely to change in a few months (because of my past experience), and it's true that I do feel wary about maybe being isolated.

DP can cycle to work, and I could borrow the car.

happytourer Wed 06-Jul-11 12:30:08

I suppose one question is "how long would one be prepared to wait until we can be together?"

ImperialBlether Wed 06-Jul-11 14:19:10

If you are planning to live together, which involves you moving, you not living near your friends and you having to travel an hour to work, then he needs to be a bit nicer to you about it!

And none of this talk about 'borrowing' the car. You wouldn't need to use the car if you stayed put, would you?

Also, his life is harder than yours, now (as he sees it.) Do you think he will always feel his life is harder?

BEAUTlFUL Wed 06-Jul-11 15:55:27

Good for you for feeling unsure about this. You're right to! If you move 30 miles from your LiFe just to live with an uncommited boyfriend, you'll be SO depressed. You'll feel all dependent on him for everything - social life, support, companionship - all SO miserable.

Just say, "I don't feel comfortable moving 30 miles away from my life." if he wants you, let him sort it out. Let him beg for the pleasure of your company! Let him sort it out to benefit you!

No mention of marriage? he expects you to give up everything and move 30 miles just for the pleasure of living with him? [wrinkles nose] I'd hold out for a better deal.

BEAUTlFUL Wed 06-Jul-11 15:57:14

"DP thinks that if I’m not going to move, then, ultimately there’s not much of a future."

Maybe he's right. Maybe you don't want to saddle yourself with someone as selfish as him.

HerHissyness Wed 06-Jul-11 16:10:48

9m is still perhaps very early on to go through this kind of upheaval, when he's not offering any form of additional commitment in exchange for you leaving everyone you know.

I think BEAUTIFUL makes very good points.

This situation is ALL one way - HIS way. Just for the privilege of sharing a postcode with him? hmm ImperialBlether is right, not much in it for YOU there is it?

Value yourself more my love.

BEAUTlFUL Wed 06-Jul-11 16:16:25

But there's no reason for this to be a Big Deal. I ean, still go on holiday, etc! Be happy! He's a nice BF. He hasn't insulted you by asking you to ditch your ates and move in with him. It's not a slap in the face or anything. Think of it in ters of, "It's sweet of him to want us to live together but this first offer doesn't suit me. I'll turn this down and if he strops off and chucks me because of that, then I have lost nothing except what turned out to be a selfish BF."

I think your attitude when discussing this with him should be cheerful but decided. "Oooh no, that wouldn't work for me. Fancy another point?" -type thing.

You're only 9 months in. No reason why you shouldn't have a light, breezy, fun time for another 3 months then have a serious Think About Things at the 1-year mark.

BEAUTlFUL Wed 06-Jul-11 16:17:41

Argh -- M key, why didst thou desert me?!

And obviously I meant, "fancy another pint" not point. Ugh.

happytourer Wed 06-Jul-11 17:00:39

Thanks for all the advice. I don't think that necessarily DP is being completely selfish. DP's job is busy and more settled and so it makes sense to move from mine, rather than the other way round.

I think it's too early at 9 months to thinking about marriage, but quite possibly the right time to be thinking about making a bigger commitment, which living together is.

DP is worried that if at 9 months, I'm going to want to miss my friends, then I'm still going to miss my friends at 12 months or 18 months, and therefore it's difficult to see a future.

BEAUTIFUL, I do think you're right though that this is a bit of a test of DP's character. If DP is stroppy about this (and it looks like the holiday may be cancelled), I think that's a bigger problem.

I'm quite an indecisive person, and perhaps it's only my reluctance to change that is the problem.

Bennifer Thu 07-Jul-11 13:46:48

That really is a difficult and I hope you work it out. 9 months is quite early to be moving in, but I can see where your boyfriend is coming from.

buzzsore Thu 07-Jul-11 14:18:59

Of course you'd miss your friends and it is a big deal to move away from your home.

What you could do is say you're not ready yet. Perhaps you're willing to start making yourself a friendship & support network in your potential new hometown: to have a foot in both camps perhaps for a while? Instead of just weekends, you could spend a couple more days a week with him and do the commute, see how it goes? Maybe you need to think about getting your own transport to give you greater options.

You don't have to do the moving in thing straight away or all at once, and if he won't accept you slowing things down a tad then that could be a red flag.

JanMorrow Thu 07-Jul-11 15:18:49

If I was in your position, I would wait a couple of months and then move to his town to give it a try. What's to lose? If you hate it, you know you've given it a shot and you can discuss maybe moving somewhere closer to your home town.

How long would your commute be? My commute (when not manufactoring babies/ on maternity leave!) is over an hour which is pretty normal in London and my mates are all over London (rather than down the road) so it takes at least 30mins to go and see them (if in the centre of town) or over an hour if going nearer to where some of them live (which is also where my family are)..

What I'm saying is, I love seeing my family and mates and do so really regularly but I need to put the effort in because they're not 5mins down the road.. but it's doable and my bloke and I are really happy where we are. You just need to get used to it.

happytourer Thu 07-Jul-11 15:32:03

Thanks for the advice.

I like the idea of maybe trying to spend a little longer (say a week or so) over at DP's place and seeing how it goes, before moving in more formally.

We're supposed to be going on holiday on Monday, and DP is working nights until then, and it's difficult to get in touch.

I think if we can't sort this out before Monday, then it doesn't look very positive.

chubsasaurus Thu 07-Jul-11 15:39:38

I was in a similar situation only the distance was further, around 100 miles. DP commuted because it was possible with his job but not mine and now it's broken us. He can't handle feeling isolated and, although I understand, I feel like the experiment that went wrong and we are moving from cohabiting for a year to long distance. I don't know if we are going to get through it, I suspect now. I wish we had never tried despite it being such a wonderful year because separating our stuff and leaving is destroying me.

Give it serious thought. It's a lot easier to move in than to accept it hasn't worked and move out. I might have lost the best relationship I've ever had through it.

happytourer Thu 07-Jul-11 15:43:21

Chubsasaurus, are you saying you regret having tried moving in because of the pain caused by moving out?

chubsasaurus Thu 07-Jul-11 16:08:55

Yes.

It is just terrible and feels like a step backwards. It's caused so many arguments (previously very rare) that we've lost all closeness and he doesn't speak to me or look at me in the same way. We move out properly next week and as much as we say it isn't the end and we will do long distance again, I just don't know if this is true. It's heartbreaking.

chubsasaurus Thu 07-Jul-11 16:10:16

I'd never ever say to not do something because of possible consequences if it doesn't work out, but it is very hard to take a step backwards and the process has been hideous for me. Think it through very carefully. I haven't really stopped crying for a few weeks because of all this.

BEAUTlFUL Thu 07-Jul-11 16:11:36

I think it's too early at 9 months to thinking about marriage, but quite possibly the right time to be thinking about making a bigger commitment, which living together is.

Living together is no commitment at all. It's just convenience. You give up EVERYTHING (space, freedom, independence and, in this case, your town\network\friends) in return for... Er... Let me think... Um...

If it's too soon to marry, it's too soon to live together. Living together is all the boring parts of marriage without any of the legal protection if you were to split up. It's a total waste of your time. I'm serious. You'll move in, it'll be fab for a while, then you'll start to want more commitment, kids etc (you'll feel your clock's ticking), he'll be all "But we're fine as we are!", you'll feel it's a huge hassle to move out again... Time will pass... You'll get pregnant... Time will pass... Then you'll be 40, unmarried, with kids, and still no legal protection.

Avoid! It's honestly a shitty deal for women! Avoid!

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