Shortly after getting engaged, we moved in together—to my condo.
Sharing space comes with some variations on sharing money too—the most common options seem to be:
One for All: All income goes in to one account, all expenses come out. All accounts are joint.
Totally Separate: Each person handles all of their own money; bills are split according to some formula (usually either 50/50 or proportionate to income). Either each partner handles different bills, or one partner handles them all and the other partner pays them.
Mixed Bag: Anywhere between the two above—some accounts are together, others are separate. Some expenses are joint, others are individual.
So you may have gathered by now that Shamrock and I live together.
This was not exactly my plan.
I know some people can’t imagine not living together first, and others wouldn’t dream of it. I just…preferred not to. Shamrock and I are in our thirties. Shamrock has been married before; I almost got engaged*—we both know what we’re getting in to.
So how did this happen? Shamrock decided to move when his lease was up, about seven months in to our relationship (his lease was up two months later, but you obviously make a decision earlier). After the lease was signed, he told me what he had really wanted was to move in with me, but he hadn’t asked because he knew I would say no. (He was right.) Lease in hand, he moved out of his downtown apartment on Michigan Avenue to be closer to me on the North Side.
There’s Shamrock’s apartment in the background—the tall white building. Photo by Caili Helsper
Obviously, Shamrock is very excited that today is basically all about him, but this is a nice day in the history of both of us Clovers too.
Two years ago, our second date was on St. Patrick’s Day (the day that it was over 80 degrees in Chicago, in March—I miss that year…). And it was a total comedy of errors. I still marvel that he wanted to go out with me again—it was one of those days where everything happens just wrong and all the bad questions get asked and everything happens at once.
So join me in a trip down memory lane. We were fresh off our first date, one Shamrock almost cancelled because I was so impossible to schedule with. (Lunch. No, now I have to work. Maybe dinner—no, ice cream. Never mind, I can’t do Friday now.) [Strike 1: Impossible to schedule with.] But schedule we did, and we closed down the restaurant.
Before we can get into any of the goodness that is wedding planning, let’s go all the way back to the start, 11 months ago (shocking, I know). Mr. Farmer (still working on it) and I are unique in that our relationship moved very quickly, like super quickly. Since Mr. Farmer has been married before, he knew what he was looking for and didn’t see the point in waiting years to get engaged and married. I agreed, as I knew without a doubt that Mr. Farmer is Mr. Perfect for me. Some people questioned our relationship in the beginning because we moved fast, but we didn’t care what anyone had to say.I will say this: when you know, you know. It’s very difficult trying to explain that to someone who hasn’t yet experienced that feeling themselves. As time went on and the more people saw us together, they quickly realized that we were meant to be together. We really are perfect for each other. So how did we meet?
I happened to be on a girls’ weekend in Minneapolis, and Mr. Farmer was spending the weekend with friends. We decided to head to Seven Steak and Sushi in downtown Minneapolis; however, when we got there our table was nowhere near ready. Bummer. So what’s a girl to do? Head to the bar, of course. There was only one chair open, and it just so happened to be next to Mr. Farmer. I walked right up to him and asked, “Hey, is anyone sitting here?” He turned his head, looked at me, and with the nicest voice said, “Yeah, my girlfriend…sit down!” Umm, say what?!
The Buzz is a Weddingbee series created by the hive, for the hive! Each week or so, we’ll head to the boards and ask a series of three questions””one geared toward pre-engaged, one toward engaged, and one for newlyweds. We’ll look to you to quickly provide your expert advice, and compile a selection of great answers into blog posts. Learn more here, and contribute your ideas for future “Buzz” questions you’d like to see answered!
This question was for all the newlyweds out there! We wanted to know:
Did you need time to adjust to having a spouse? How did the transition go?
Lend your helpful tips and advice to the community, and we’ll feature answers on the blog throughout this month!
You filled us in, and now we’re spilling your best answers!
Mrs. Dragon (wedding date: September 22, 2012)
Ooooh did we EVER need time to adjust! I don’t think we got settled into a comfortable life until at least six months after the wedding. And those first six months were BRUTAL. For whatever reason, it was all doom and gloom and pressure and fear and WTF did we get into.
We both agreed to see a counsellor. It only took four appointments or so for us to “graduate,” but I think just the commitment we made to going made a difference, because it showed both of us that we were willing to work together to fix things.
And in counselling, we learned how to communicate, and we learned that some of the things we each thought the other was doing poorly? They really were poor things to do, because we suddenly had a second opinion affirming it. Seeing our issues through someone else’s lens really helped us home in on what was going wrong.
So, this article is being shared around my Facebook feed, and I found it to actually be really good for a change. (I typically think the relationship things I see online are completely bogus.)
I’m a big believer in cultivating relationships, like one of the best lines of a Justin Bieber (I know, I’m super sorry, especially in light of recent events—geez, bad timing) song ever:
But the grass ain’t always greener on the other side, it’s green where you water it.
Honestly, never thought something that profound would come from the Biebs, but whatever. I looooove that line. It’s just so true. Anywho.
I’ve been in relationships that went on longer than they should’ve, but as I’ve mentioned previously, I’m stubborn. I don’t like regrets, and I don’t want to have to wonder if I didn’t do enough to try to make something work. Sometimes, that’s a terrible thing to do in a relationship, because you need to know when it’s not worth it anymore so you can cut your losses and move on. But most of the time, being too stubborn to give up on a relationship is a good thing.
To continue from my previous post, Monsieur P and I were friends for a while before we became anything more. This was due in large part to the fact that I already had a boyfriend, and to a lesser degree, because I considered the mister to be “like the brother I never had.”
Well, time went by, and I broke up with my boyfriend in December 2008. Seeing (on Facebook) that I was on the market again, a couple of our friends decided to meddle in our lives a little bit. My friend J really hit it off with Monsieur P’s friend A back in 2007, and so when they saw I was newly single, they reached out to Monsieur P to tell him the good news! They made plans to get us in the same place at the same time, and the rest, as they say, is history.
Photo via Amazon / A movie we both loved and owned on DVD”¦and we both love Ryan Reynolds.
It was surprisingly easy to move from being “just friends” to being a “we.” As a couple, we still did the same things we did as friends—went to sporting events and concerts, hung out with friends, went to movies, and went to dinner. Except now we also spent every evening together too, cooking dinner and watching TV.
The short story on how we met: We met online. But who wants the short story?
Back in June 2010, I got an email notification from a dating website I had stopped checking regularly that I had some new messages. On a whim, I decided to log in. At first, I had the same old one-to-three-word messages from random losers guys. As I was deleting them, I stumbled on what looked like a cover letter for a job, from Gander. I decided that if someone was going to put in this much effort, I may as well respond. I found out months later that it was actually a form letter he would use, and just change the first paragraph depending on what the girl had written in her profile. By then, I was already hooked.
We talked periodically from June to August, when Gander finally came out and said, “I’m not busy this weekend. Would you want to get together for dinner?” Working in theatre, I rarely get Saturday nights off, but this happened to be one of those rare Saturdays. We ended up meeting near his apartment building, and walking to down a local popular chain pub down the road.
Now that we’ve covered some of the gritty details, and you probably have gotten a sense of who we are, let’s take it back to the beginning. I’ll start with a story that we like to tell, the silly story of how we met.