So my boyfriend and I are moving in together. It makes sense: we're together all the time as is, I think it will be fun and we'll save money. It is the Next Step. But as it approaches, doubt is creeping in. Is he The One? Is there such a thing? Do we have to have a conversation about the Future, ie: kids, dogs, Beach Ranch Vineyard, etc? Or can we take it one step at a time? How certain do I have to be to take this relationship to the next level?
A beloved British friend of ours recently said something quite profound about relationship. He is in his fifties, and we count on him for the sort of wise perspective us juveniles sometimes lack. His words of wisdom may help you, dear Reader, gain some peace around your conundrum. Here’s what he said: Don’t worry about picking the guy Forever. Just focus on picking the guy for Right Now.
At first glance this might seem flippant, irresponsible or even impractical. But take a moment to let it sink in. We’d all like to believe we could control and predict the future. We can’t. We’d like to think the decisions we make in our 20’s are the same we would make in our 50’s. They’re not. We’d like to believe that when we say, “ I do”, we’ll never want anything else. Tough luck. What we (and our British bloke) are saying is, do what feels right, right now. The future will unfold however it unfolds, and when problems and predicaments arise you will handle them. Moving in now feels right. So go with it. If and when it ever doesn’t feel right, you’ll move out. Yes, you’ll have to split up the small appliances, the pets or maybe even the kids. That’s okay. You’ll figure it out. You will use your best judgment and strive to make decisions that cause the least amount of suffering to all parties involved. You can do that, and you will, if that’s the turn this relationship takes.
Taking on this perspective will give you freedom from the pressure of having to make a decision for your future self in one year, ten years, twenty years. How could you possibly do that? Trying to make good choices for the self you have not yet become is utterly paralyzing! Just make a decision for your present self. This moment is all you can account for. Doing this also sends yourself the message that you trust your instincts. You trust you are equipped to handle whatever challenges may come. You don’t need to preemptively worry. You got this, and you’ll get it again. This is a practice in building self-confidence, self- reliance, self-assurance and a healthy appreciation for the adventure of life.
So we urge you to go forth with joy and confidence into your new home! Who knows what the future holds? And of course we’re right here for you, should you ever need exit strategy assistance…