Moving in Together . . . Could This Be a Red Flag?

Have you ever found yourself dating someone, knowing that there’s a lot right with them, but still plagued by a nagging thought in the back of your mind about whether you’re going to be happy with this person long-term?

In this video, I show you a strategy that allows you to find out for sure if it can work, without risking too much of your energy and precious time . . .

LOVE LIFE: Steve Works Hard & Matt Wears a Shirt.
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Stephen Hussey:

So Matthew, I got a question in from Jessica—

 

Matthew Hussey:

Can I just say, Steve, I’m wearing a nice plaid shirt today, which, admittedly, is more of a full set of colors than leading into summer, but you haven’t said a word about it. And I know people listening can’t see that, but still you didn’t even acknowledge it before we went live on the podcast. This is me. This is me. I’m at home right now. This is me making an effort. I didn’t get dressed to go somewhere. I got dressed for you. I was in my pajamas five minutes before—Jeremy will tell you. I was in my pajamas, mate, when Jeremy showed up. I was in a baggy pajama shirt. It’s got holes in it. I went and got a coffee, Steve, in my pajamas before getting dressed for you. That means that I didn’t get dressed for the world. I went out in, literally, Steve, it was a baggy shirt, 10 times too big for me with holes in it and pajama bottoms. They couldn’t even pass as sweatpants that you’d wear to the gym. They’re quite clearly things that you should only wear in and around the bed.

 

Stephen Hussey:

But that’s how people dress in LA. That’s the thing, isn’t it? When you kind of look like you don’t try when you—

 

Matthew Hussey:

Do they, Steve?

 

Stephen Hussey:

When you go out to get coffee, you have to look like celebrity on a day off where it’s like there’s holes in everything.

 

Matthew Hussey:

No.

 

Stephen Hussey:

I’ve got my cap over my eyes and I just want to grab a smoothie and a breakfast bunny bowl and head home.

 

Matthew Hussey:

Let me correct you because the people you’re seeing going in and out of those coffee shops in LA, I guarantee you there isn’t a hole in their clothing that’s not bought and paid for. They are meant to be there, those holes.

 

Stephen Hussey:

Fair enough. Well, your little spring shirt, it’s very light for you. You don’t usually wear such bright, sun-reflective colors and you look like a sweet boy someone would take home to mum, their parents, and their parents would think, “He’s a well turned out fine young man.” That’s the vibe you’ve gone for.

 

Matthew Hussey:

Well, @ddon28 on Instagram is actually saying, “Can we stay on topic?” Which I think is my fault for taking us out of it. So, Steve, sorry. You had a question for me today.

 

Stephen Hussey:

We have a question from Jessica who says, “Hi, Matt and Steve. I’d like your input on some strange feelings that I’ve been having that I’m not really sure what to do with. Your shirt, Matthew, makes me feel . . .” No, I’m joking. She didn’t say that. “I met my boyfriend last year after I moved back home due to COVID. It’s pretty clear we’re a match, and I’ve been so impressed with him and the way he treats me. Here’s the thing. He asked me to move in, which I eventually know will happen but, because of the pandemic, we live home with our parents right now. His mum insists on cooking and cleaning. He takes full advantage of this, even though he may want to cook and clean for himself because she makes it difficult to help her. I feel like I need to see what he’d be like without his mother cooking and cleaning for him because there’ve been a few times when I’ve cooked for him and he didn’t seem appreciative at all and I had to remind him I did something special for him.

I don’t know how it’s possible for me to see this through, because in order for us to move in together, he’s basically building a house. I think our values in this area may be too different because I was raised without anyone cooking or cleaning for me.” So she basically says, “I’ve talked to him about this. He’s aware of how I feel, but I’m not exactly sure what to do or what else even needs to be talked about. Any insights you have would be greatly appreciated.”

 

Matthew Hussey:

Who is this from?

 

Stephen Hussey:

This is from Jessica.

 

Matthew Hussey:

Jessica.

 

Stephen Hussey:

It comes down to the crux of someone has different values from you. They treat their home cooking, cleaning in a different way than you do. And she feels like it hasn’t really been tested to see what he does, and is he going to just let her do all of that, like he did his mum.

 

Matthew Hussey:

See, I agree that on one level this question is about values, but on another level, this question is really about relationships that jump to a stage where two people don’t have all the information that they might want or need in order to move to that stage. We don’t know if they have different values yet because as she rightly points out, she hasn’t seen him in that environment. He might be far better than she thinks he’ll be once he’s in that environment. We’ve all had that experience of there’s an apathy, perhaps a little bit of an ignorant sometimes that comes from a family situation where you take things for granted and then you’re quite a different person when you move out on your own. It brings out a different side to you. He might be worse than she thinks he’s going to be, might be an entitled, coddled little nightmare Lord Fauntleroy when she gets him on his own. So we don’t know that yet. That’s the point. How long have they been seeing each other?

 

Stephen Hussey:

She says she met him last year after she moved back home due to COVID.

 

Matthew Hussey:

So look, obviously there’s been a lot of people who met during COVID and then ended up moving in together just because it was either that or don’t see each other. And so they were thrown into these situations where it was an unnatural rate of progress for a relationship. To some extent, you might say this is fast. They met last year. They’ve only experienced living at home with his parents. And she doesn’t know what he’ll be like outside of that. In a normal situation, she would have her own place and he would have his own place and they would see how it evolved from there. You spend a couple of nights at each other’s, you see how that person is when they’re in your space, do they pick up after themselves? Do they help you make the bed in the morning?

Are they a good teammate in your environment? And what do they expect of you when you’re in theirs? And from there, you can start to figure out whether living together feels right. You graduate from two nights a week to three nights a week, before you know it, they’ve got a toothbrush at your house, you’ve got one at theirs. You don’t have to pack a bag as much. So it starts to graduate in organic ways. What she’s really worried about is that this can’t progress right now or doesn’t seem to be able to progress in an organic way. So one way to look at that is to say—first you could say, “Okay, let’s have it progress in a more organic way. I’ll get my own place. You get yours, and we’ll see how that plays out.” Or, “At least one of us gets our own place and you can still go back to your parents some nights and come stay at mine some other nights.”

That’s more organic. Now it may be that behind this is a kind of financial situation, plus maybe some hurt feelings if they don’t decide as the next step to move in together. But there might be some financial reasons why they’re talking about moving in together from this place that they’re in right now. If you’re going to move at a pace that’s not organic, then you should at least have some pressure-relieving conversations. So don’t sign a two-year lease. Maybe don’t even sign a one-year lease. Sign a six-month lease and be like, “Look, why don’t we just try it? No one’s holding anyone to anything right now. It’s not that we don’t go back to living separately after this. Why don’t we just give it a try for a few months and just see how we get on.”

My preference, if finances weren’t a problem at all, I would say to them, go rent an Airbnb for a month. Don’t even go straight into a lease. Literally rent an Airbnb. Go live somewhere for 30 days together and you don’t have to say, “Let’s do this because I don’t know how much of a nightmare you’re going to be just yet and I want to test.” You just say, “Look, we’ve not done this before. It’s exciting, but we also haven’t had a chance to have our own space before. So why don’t we just rent a place for 30 days? Go rent it for a month and let’s have some fun with it.” And you can even pitch it as, like, “Let’s enjoy the novelty of it a little more, because maybe we want to live here for this month and try somewhere different for another month, somewhere a bit further out of town or whatever. Let’s not throw ourselves into this right now. Let’s get a space together and have some fun with that and see what we want to do at the end of that period.”

Or if you want to do it for two months, do it for two months. I’m a big fan of the mini-experiment. It’s the same to me as if you move country. Anyone who says, “I want to go and live in Italy,” go try it for a month. The idea of upending . . .”I’m going to sell my home and go move to Italy because I have some idea in my mind of the fantasy of being in Italy . . .” Go be there for a month. Rent a place for a month. Yes, it’s going to cost a little more to rent a place for a month, but it’s a lot less expensive than going and buying a house or going and signing a 12-month lease for something that, two months in, you realize it was a horrific mistake.

 

Stephen Hussey:

You want some ways of pulling the parachute on an idea, especially the bigger the plan, the bigger the change, have more measures in place so that you can pull back, if you roll the dice and it comes up a one or a two, be like, “Okay, we’ve got a plan B for this.”

 

Matthew Hussey:

You can take more serious steps, but have lighter conversations about them. I’ll repeat that because I think it’s very important, because it’s important for anyone listening to this right now at any stage of a relationship. Serious steps don’t need to come all the time with really heavy conversations. You can say to someone, “Hey look, no one’s signing a contract in blood here. We are really having a good time together. This seems to be growing, and I think what we have is really great. And if you agree, then I think it would be fun to do this next thing. But no one’s doing anything that they can’t leave. If you decide that it’s too much for you, or if I decide it’s too much for me, that could happen at any time, that’s real life. If one of us feels like it’s not right, at any time we can leave.”

That’s the reality of it. By the way, whether you acknowledge that or not, it’s the truth. So sometimes by acknowledging it, by talking about it, it’s okay if someone changes their mind. But if we’re not giving it a go, then what’s the point? I’m now into a different conversation because it’s really about how to progress a little bit in commitment. But that is kind of the same thing. It’s both the route to more commitment sometimes, if you want more commitment, but it’s also the route to more measured commitment, if you’re concerned about the next step. If you want to dip your toe in the water, the conversation is useful in both directions because it’s a pressure valve. It’s a pressure valve. And what she needs right now is not a crystal ball that tells her whether he’s going to be able to evolve away from being the adolescent who’s taken care of by his mom who doesn’t say “thank you.” Outside of that situation, instead of a crystal ball, what she needs is a few reference points.

 

Stephen Hussey:

You need more data. It’s too much of a . . . you don’t know what he’ll be like in the environment just with you. If it was a more clear cut pattern where you’re like, “This guy doesn’t have a job, he plays video games all day and has no motivation. Should I move in?” It’s like, he’s not going to change because he moves in with you. But here you need data of what it’s like living with you. If it’s just this one area where it’s like, how is it going to be dividing up the responsibilities? Let’s give him some responsibility and see how it goes.

 

Matthew Hussey:

But if you already have doubts, then don’t sign a 12-month lease to move in with someone. Go live with someone for a month somewhere. Pay a little extra to live in an Airbnb together. Other ways of renting properties are available, this isn’t an advertisement for Airbnb. But go rent a place together for a month. Just do a short term. See how you get on and get some data. And if that goes well, you’ll have evidence for why you might want to try three months or six months, and you can build from there in an organic way.

 

Stephen Hussey:

And you got to show people the baby you want. But that’s conversation for another time. Well, thank you very much, everyone. We will see you on the next wonderful wicked whipsaw episode of the Love.Life podcast. I am Steven Hussey. He’s Matthew Hussey. Go and subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Spotify, all those platforms, even Stitcher. Yes, you. We will see you next time.

 

Matthew Hussey:

People over time have thought, “Oh, Matt, stop digging at your brother.” I think what they’re coming to realize, they’re coming to a point of increased empathy with me where they’re realizing they just hadn’t seen the dynamic enough. They thought I wore the trousers in everything, but I think they’ve just seen who wears the trousers. You called the end of that.

 

Stephen Hussey:

Right. That is horse manure, my friend. And you sitting there in your little dad shirt.

 

Matthew Hussey:

Oh, see. Here we go.

 

Stephen Hussey:

Real high horse.

 

Matthew Hussey:

Here we go. Now you’re having a go at the shirt. The real Steve comes out.

 

Stephen Hussey:

Oh, my event is, “I wore a new shirt today. Can I have a prize?”

 

Matthew Hussey:

Here we go.

 

Stephen Hussey:

I’m sitting here bringing the questions. I’m bringing the questions trying to help you.

 

Matthew Hussey:

No. Come on. Let’s see the real Steve because everyone’s got this impression that I’m like, “Oh, I come in all controlling” and you’re like, “Leave your brother alone, Matt.” Now you’re seeing it.

 

Stephen Hussey:

“Oh, Steve, I wore a shirt today for the podcast.” Well, I bought you some questions, Matt that I fielded from social media and I’m hosting it and recording it, all right?

 

Matthew Hussey:

Okay.

 

Stephen Hussey:

And you’re going, “Oh, I’ve worn a shirt.” Oh, oh, Mr. Magnanimous. Here you go.

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4 Replies to “Moving in Together . . . Could This Be a Red Flag?”

  1. Lovely. However, let’s say you go mini experiment in a relationship and get more data. The data points to a NO – how do you move in stregth with it and not second guess your decision. You covered this a midge in the March 28th VIP call . But in that scenario he made it easy by moving in first.- what it your the one moving on…..

  2. Hey Matthew, the shirt makes you look very handsome :) you dress really well for a man, I love whatever you wear, you got good taste, wouldn’t change anything on you.
    I love the ‘ renting ‘ idea, I will definitely keep that in mind for the future, I would plan that month together, to make the most of every day. I am not in a relationship yet, I will already put money aside for it now.
    You know Matthew I am always on your side :) x

  3. Sorry if this is offtop or you’re over-sensitive to criticism. I noticed one peculiar thing in your latest videos. I don’t know what’s the reason here, but lately Matthew has looked thinner. No cheeks anymore. This gives his face a bit tired appearance as if he were exhausted. Maybe a diet has something to do with that. MH looked so much better with a puffier face. Perhaps it’s impolite to bring this up yet I feel worried. Altogether with a more relaxed style of the recent live videos, this gives me an impression that Matthew got tired of being the MH. I mean just look at all those old videos with Matthew walking around cities, studio videos with lots of creativity and funny jokes, even musical (Limbo video), his partner videos with Anna Akana and other YouTubers. What about his unforgettable Valentine Day pajama party for singles? Those were awesome pieces of splashing energy and cheeky (sorry, no pun intended) humour. And now all we watch is question-answer stream-like quickies with Stephen. Get it right – I like Stephen, he’s an amazing writer and a good interviewer, but it is comparison of your older and latest videos that really upsets me as your long-time viewer. I don’t even think you’re going to pay attention to my comment, but just in case – please get some rest and return with a fresh flow of new ideas and genuinely original approach that distinguished your videos before. Even your eyes, they don’t shine and sparkle like they used to. I see some new level of wisdom paired with a tint of disappointment there in Matthew’s eyes. This is pretty subjective, though I felt a strong urge to share these thoughts. Sorry again.

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