Cohabitation good way to test relationship before marriage

Illustration by Yosuke Michishita

Cohabitation has a 50 percent higher chance of leading to divorce in the future, according to the article, “Is Living Together A Good Taste for Martial Compatibility?” by clinical psychologist Bill Maier on

Regardless of what the statistics may be, I believe that the relationship is completely in the couple’s hands, and cohabitation can be a great indicator as to whether that person really does want to spend the rest of their life with their partner or not.

By sharing a home, couples can really get to know each other’s living habits, test out their compatibility and increase their level of comfort; it can basically be a test for their future.

Those that argue against cohabitation claim that it isolates the couple from the outside world, that the couple can get sick of one another and that there will be no change when they get married.

Now, as mentioned previously, the relationship is completely in the couple’s hands. If they isolate themselves from the outside world and everyone they know, then that’s on them.

It is common sense that isolating yourself from everything that is not your boyfriend/girlfriend is unhealthy for you and the relationship, so why do it?

It is important for the individuals in the relationship to have a girls’ or guys’ night every once in a while, or family time with their own family. That way their partner will be more excited to see them or spend time with them afterward, something they probably haven’t felt in a while since they’re living together.

As for getting sick of each other, if it happened when the couple cohabitated, it was bound to happen whether or not they were married.

If these individuals start getting tired of their partner when they cohabitate, then that’s probably a good indicator to the fact that something needs to be adjusted in their relationship.

As for having no change in the relationship when you actually get married, that is in the couple’s hands as well.

The two can take that factor into consideration and make sure there is some sort of an upgrade or change when they get married.

Starting off at an apartment in cohabitation, then moving into a nice house upon marriage can be a big step. Also, small details like getting pets or starting to travel together can be an exciting step.

It is up to the couple to spice things up in their own way to keep things interesting and to keep their partner on their on toes.

Therefore, living together can work if you want it to.

An Aug. 18, 2009, article by Flora McCraith on states that cohabitation is a great indicator of a couple’s compatibility.

“Seeing each other a couple of times during the week or at the weekends, isn’t really the best indicator of this as it is very different from living together, sharing bills and expenses, or first thing in the morning, or when we are ill,” McCraith said.

The idea of not cohabitating before marriage seems risky.

Marriage is putting your relationship to the ultimate test; it’s when couples really get to know each other and realize what they can tolerate about the person and what they can’t.

What if one person is a complete slob while the other is a neat freak, and it is totally intolerable for the opposite person?

At least now they know of a big factor they have to work on if they want to take their relationship to the next step and get married.

You’ve got to test drive a car before you buy it. 

Michelle Bertran is a sophomore in journalism and mass communication. Please send comments to