One of the current living/ accommodation options for a couple who are committed to each other is Living Apart Together, abbreviated to LAT. An increasing number of couples are choosing this option. Some couples in a LAT situation are legally married and some are not. Often the LAT lifestyle is a choice the couple have made but sometimes it is due to circumstances not of their choosing.
Some may argue partners in a LAT arrangement do not have the commitment to their relationship of a couple who live together. Others would disagree, saying a couple living together may be in a really 'bad' relationship but stay together simply because it is 'too hard' to split up and move to separate accommodation.
Reasons why some are Living Apart Together
Reasons for deciding to Live Alone Together include -
wishing to maintain individual freedom.
being too set in their ways to adapt to cohabitation
feeling it is less disruptive to children from a previous relationship. It can be difficult to achieve harmony in a blended family. It may seem easier to maintain the current living arrangements.
children from a previous relationship and the current partner have major issues or the children from both previous relationships can not coexist.
pets each partner already has can not coexist.
partners not wishing to give up the house they are currently living in for a variety of reasons. It could be for financial considerations or because one or both has been disadvantaged in the past by moving in with someone else or having another person move in to his/her home.
thinking if the relationship doesn't last, accommodation is already sorted
one partner is a hoarder and the other has OCD
one or both work from home
one partner is in jail
one is in an aged care facility or has a severe disability and lives in accommodation which provides the support needed
one partner's employment is in a distant location
Advantages of Living Apart Together
Couples have given various advantages to a LAT situation including -
maintaining individual freedom
being able to devote more time and energy to children from a previous relationship
being able to spend the time needed to care for a child with a disability or parent
easier to devote more time to their career
enjoying the time they do spend together more
maintaining more excitement in the relationship
freedom to enjoy time alone
Disadvantages of Living Apart Together
Depending on circumstances, a LAT relationship may not be all 'beer and skittles'. Disadvantages may include -
social disapproval or lack of understanding/support from family and friends
more expensive than living together
never have to come to a mutual agreement in the way living together couples do and this may mean they are not as close emotionally
missing out on all the little jokes and shared experiences of couples living together
not having the other person around when they need to talk and have a reassuring cuddle
the other person not being on hand when one requires help with a physical job around the home, especially something that can't wait
In this day and age there is greater choice around living arrangements. Each person needs to find what works for him or her and hope they can find someone who feels the same way.