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I moved in with my boyfriend a month after we started dating

It was the week before spring break, and I was in the same position as everyone else. I was trying to figure out where to spend the rest of the semester. The only thing I knew for sure was I didn’t want to go home. 

My family lives in Idaho, and I brought my car to school, meaning that going home would entail a three-day road trip from hell with my parents. Not really my idea of a good time and probably not anyone’s idea of a good time. So, I started looking for alternatives. 

The nice thing about Miami is a good amount of its students live relatively close to campus, including my boyfriend who lives two-and-a-half hours away in Columbus. By the title, I’m sure you see where this is going. 

I’ll spare you the technical details of phone calls from my freaked out mother to me and my boyfriend and his mother and just tell you that it all worked out. The Wednesday before spring break started, I was on my way to Columbus, Ohio, to live with complete strangers for an undetermined amount of time. 

Shockingly enough, it’s really hard to live with another person, especially during a national pandemic that leaves the state of Ohio under lockdown. 

Here’s what happened – 

Day 1: We got into a big argument while packing up my room. It left us both slightly bitter which bled into... 

Day 2: Oh, who doesn’t love the unspoken tension of arguments unresolved. That initial argument turned into a full on screaming match in a parking lot. Of course, all of this bickering was over minor everyday hidnerances that got inflated by the stress of living together for the foreseeable future. Then came...

Day 3: I almost left. I almost said screw it and called my mom to beg her to take me home. I hadn't realized any kind of relationship, even a good one, is a ton of work. I thought this was going to be a cake walk, but all we had done was fight. Things began to turn around on...

Day 4: Another day, another fight. This time, over how much we were fighting. I ended up walking out and sitting on the driveway, wondering what to do. My boyfriend came out with an extra jacket and asked me to take a walk with him. Somehow, that one small gesture of kindness in the middle of all this stress gave me hope for the future of us, which lasted through...

Days 5-9: We were beginning to settle into our groove. Then the basement flooded. And we couldn’t shower or flush the toilet for four days. We could not catch a break. Somehow though, having a common enemy of the household plumbing kept us from being at each other’s throats. And then came the godsends of...

Days 10-19: The good parts of living with my boyfriend finally came into play. One night, we stayed up to watch “Tiger King” and the sunrise. Another, we played Toontown Rewritten for hours together. We were beginning to understand life together, and it was turning into what I had expected it to be before I left Miami. That leads us to... 

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Today: As I’m writing this, it’s his mom’s birthday. We’ve been running around all day, getting her flowers and cake and other last-minute gifts. I finally feel comfortable around his family and have stolen half his dresser for my clothes. Life is good for the first time in a while. 

But it’s been a pretty bumpy road to get here. And it’s still a little rough at times. Moving in together didn’t magically fix the problems we had before. Rather, it emphasized pre-existing ones and created new ones. 

I’m allergic to his dogs, meaning I wheeze every time I take a deep breath. He snores in his sleep and steals all of the covers. I’m also confrontational whereas he prefers to de-escalate situations by walking away. 

Every day is a new challenge when it comes to living with my boyfriend. But we always end up sleeping in the same bed at the end of the day. And that’s enough to make the hard days worth it. 

hickmael@miamioh.edu

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