This is a concept that is not really relevant to our community, but I found it interesting anyway.
Studies have shown that couples that live together before marriage are more prone to divorce, despite the prevalence of public opinion that it is the best way to go. The theory until now was that those who cohabit out of wedlock are nontraditional, meaning they would not consider divorce to be scandalous.
But this article, written by clinical psychiatrist Meg Jay, presents another view.
When couples decide to move in together, it's not because they have made a deep decision; it's more that going back to their own places to brush their teeth and change every morning is a drag. So they "slide" into living together for convenience. And their motivations are different; most women think they are a step closer to marriage, men think they are postponing eventual commitment. Their different interpretations already poses a problem.
Sharing a place has a host of economic benefits. Since a couple is splitting expenses, they can afford a nicer place, share technology, and save on a host of other things. But once in this situation, they can't get out. Splitting up is no longer a financial option.
Now there is nowhere to go but forward, with marriage. Which leads to divorce all too quickly, since they weren't in the end a suitable couple, simply a casual fling, upgraded instead of tossed.
I always wonder what it would be like to date with no specific goal in mind. I can't understand it. How do two people meet and not try to figure out if, on a deeper level, they were meant to be together? Wasted years are devoted to doomed relationships, all because no one made a point to be aware.