Reflecting on a year of living with a boy

I remember, before I got sick with Crohns, dreaming about moving to university and hanging out with guys super casually, maybe even living with one in a house share(!!) Perhaps it was the ingrained idea that university was going to be chill and fun, ignoring the amount of work piling up. I suppose, having gone to a girls school, I was just looking forward to the day to day conversations with the less bitchy, more readable sex.

I guess you can blame TV shows for the idea that university was a doddle, and merely existed to be the forum in which young adults met and grew up together into semi-adults?

However, university didn’t happen and I was flung straight into a year-long apprenticeship and moving out of home into my father’s empty house. I was lonely, guys! I filled the time with always being out hanging with friends, partying too much, and avoiding housework like a plague, until Sam came along.
We fell together like leaves in the Autumn, deliberately and finally. I mean, how many guys wait five years for you to wake up and notice?! From the start, Sam and I were pretty inseparable and spending maybe one night a week separate. That’s why, when we had the opportunity to buy our first home we did it. After eight months and six days together and never having lived together, we were approved for our first mortgage and on the hunt for a home. After nine months and twenty two days, we had been successful in getting an offer accepted on our little cottage.

Guys, it happened so fast!

Now, just over a year after moving into our cottage, it seems weird to think that we haven’t always lived together or been a pair. It’s pretty natural now, the cleaning schedule and the ‘what should we have for dinner’ conversation. However, it was tough at the start! Here’s a few of the things that really grind my gears and how we get around them.

It takes time to get to know your housemate. When we first lived together, we honestly thought it was going to be so easy because we had been staying with each other at our parent’s houses for over a year (once we got the keys and moved in). I’m afraid to say, those first two months seriously tested our relationship. We both expected the other person to pick up the slack, and I thought Sam should just know what I wanted without my asking. It took a while, but we eventually both learned we needed to ask the other person to do something. In the same way I didn’t know Sam wanted me to bring a glass of water to bed, he didn’t know I wanted him to wipe the counter down! It got so bad that we stopped talking, stopped sharing the load, and just did the things that affected us – and that, my friend, is unsustainable. Now, I have no qualms with texting Sam a list of things to do when I’m out, because I totally appreciate they probably won’t get done if I don’t ;)

Guys don’t notice what girls do! Those hairs left in the sink? The empty kitchen towel roll? They don’t see it, it’s like they’re blind to the little things! Where I want things to be 10 minutes away from guest ready, Sam doesn’t always see the need to dust every week or wipe the coffee table down after we’ve had toast. He’s super chill, still house proud, but he doesn’t let the little things bother him. That’s why, sometimes it’s easier for me to do it myself and leave him to do the big tasks like hoovering the whole house or hanging the laundry up.

They make things easier and harder at the same time, and you’ll never win. I pretty much do all the cooking, I love it and Sam doesn’t, so it works out well because he always does the dishes. However, in our tiny kitchen it gets a little cramped when we are back to back, both trying to complete our kitchen task at the same time! I mean, I am super grateful he’s taken the initiative to get a head start on the dishes, so I should be grateful, but I don’t think his brain considers how much easier it would be for both of us if we did it in shifts ;)

Socks get balled up everywhere. Everywhere! Just pick them up, and throw them in the laundry pile.

Missing a glass? Check their bedside table. Our water bill would be 40% less if Sam didn’t consider himself a thirsty person during the night. I swear he doesn’t even take a sip!

Overall, living with Sam is super fun. We can blitz the whole house in less than an hour and have the rest of the evening together. He lets me watch my shows, and makes me viewing snacks. He makes the whole house smell delicious with his cologne and actually takes an interest in our décor (yes, décor!) however has put his foot down on florals. You win some, you lose some.

I don’t regret buying before renting, or the quickness of our cohabiting. I just wish I’d been a bit more prepared for the communication struggles we encountered at the start.

Do you live with a partner or friend? How did you find the transition to sharing a toothpaste tube (which, thankfully, Sam cleans so there’s no crust!)?

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