Our personal lair gives us sanctuary, even Batman had his cave. Living alone in Gotham is tough, living with somebody else even tougher. For most of us thanks to the price of exorbitant rent, i living in Manhattan due to the exorbitant rent, is beng willing to live in a teeny tiny shoebox apartment. After you finally have your shoebox the way you want it, you fall in love… so you give up your shoebox, to move into theirs. This is when problems can start. Your personal space is your piece of the rock. Its where you get to be you without filter or apologies. Over 50% of all marriages fail. I wonder if that percentage is higher in urban areas where people live in close quarters? It’s best to love somebody an awful lot if your going to share an apartment with them. There’s no place to run, nowhere to escape when you have a fight, you can’t slam the door and march into the other room. Especially if you are sharing a studio. Some people can’t even choose to sleep on the sofa, because the sofa is the pullout, where you already sleep. You loved your bachelor/bachelorette pad and making the adjustments to cohabitation is difficult. Of course it’s difficult, we live in a city where something that was once a walk in closet now gets sold to us as one bedroom! Breath deep. Keeping some mystique in close quarters can be next to impossible. The question becomes, how to make it all work?
New York City is a breeding ground for unconventional relationships by virtue of its living conditions. Well respected architect, Jeffrey Drucker told me that when he was in school, he had an assignment to design a home which would induce a couple to argue. Not enough closet space, cabinets that are too high, no room for people’s things etc. In theory, if a bad design can test a relationship to its limits, then surely the opposite must be true that cohabitational bliss can happen through intelligent design.
Have you ever had a friendship sour because you became roommates or moved in with a significant other to find that living with them was impossible? It could be that it wasn’t them and it wasn’t you, it might’ve been your apartment!
You’re a neat freak and he leaves his socks all over the floor. Solution, get a maid service.
You rise at dawn for your 3 mile run. He works the night shift. He’s kosher, your vegan what will you you eat together apart from salad?
You need to pick and choose your battles.
Your tastes are different and you might be thinking, “What taste? They don’t have any!” Remain calm and try to remember why you fell in love in the first place. Hire a professional to help you blend your esthetics and minimize quarreling.
Your home is important it’s your oasis in this asphalt jungle, a refuge from the rush. Home can and should be delicious even if your matchbox resembles a cave, it can still be lovely.
The effort you make in making your home lovely might also save your relationship in the long run and is well worth the effort.
Organization is key.
Rule number one eliminate as much stuff as possible. This does not mean throw out all his stuff, (even if you want to), but rather that you each edit your own belongings to the best of your abilities and help each other with suggestions and moral support.
One of the hardest, andbest things I ever did was get rid of all of my stuff. So difficult that
I now get a little hesitant about acquiring new stuff. But the blending of more than one person in an apartment requires editing and acquiring some new things for the greater good of those dwelling there.
First excavate, then edit, rearrange and finally organize, then organize some more and when you think you’ve maximized your use of space, chances are you you can do better.
How will you merge? Go shopping together-great excuse for post shopping guacamole and tequila.
Respect things that are dear to each other like your shoe collection, his baseball cards, Xbox and other gadgets.
In the city where we live to work, rather than work to live it’s important that you make “live” as blissful as possible.