A Christian Explanation for Why Living Together Before Marriage is the Worst Idea You’ve Ever Had

Earlier this week, we discussed 27-year-old tattooed rebel Matt Walsh and his terrible, harmful views on sex.

The gist of Walsh’s post was that if you have sex with someone before you get married, you’re pretty much the worst, your future spouse will hate you, and all you’ll have left to look forward to is a long, horrible life of empty, second-hand banging.

Now, I know Walsh isn’t the only religious fella obsessed with virginity. In fact, it’s a pretty solid theme across most major religions. So imagine my lack of surprise when this came across my desk:

5 Reasons Shacking Up Before Marriage Is a Bad Idea

Now, as a current shacker-upper myself, I was pretty excited to hear what promised to be five super-solid reasons I should move out of my lovely apartment in Chicago since it’s been tainted with the pre-marital-living-together-ness of my boyfriend and me.

The beginning of the end…

So, let’s start with #1 and work our way down, shall we?

1. No blessings from God.

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

Not a single blessings from God! WHAT WILL WE DO?!

The Bible considers shacking up the opposite of a legitimate marriage.

I’m sorry to stop him so quickly, but a couple quick points to make right off the bat:

  • Oh my god, stop using “legitimate.” I know it’s been over a year since the Todd Akin debacle, but it still gives me the heebie-jeebies whenever I hear old (presumably) white guys describe just about anything as “legitimate.”
  • The author (only cited as “AllProDad.com Staff”) uses the term “shacking up” seven times in this relatively brief article.
  • Whenever I see people use “opposite” in a way that doesn’t quite work, it makes me think of this.

I’m sorry, AllProDad.com Staff, I interrupted. Please go on.

A legitimate marriage consists of a union between a man and woman who have made a covenant and commitment. Shacking up involves neither. Marriage was a union created by God and is a union God blesses.

Kind of a redundant paragraph, but I get your point. No marriage certificate = no shiny happy God light shone upon you two.

Fine. I’ll just have to cope.

2. Your relationship will probably end. 

Well, shit.

Mr. Staff quotes a statistic pulled from a 2009 article from the Examiner that says 80 percent of “shacking-up relationships” (Pleasp, please stop) end before marriage or in a divorce after marriage.

I’m seeing a huge [CITATION NEEDED] there, because it presents “some interesting stats on cohabitation gathered from the U.S. Census Bureau and the latest university studies,” but doesn’t provide any sort of link. Also, it’s from 2009, so the latest census data was nine years old at the time. I was going to do some pavement pounding of my own, but, to tell you the truth, I just don’t care that much.

Why, you ask?

Because I seriously don’t give a crap about those statistics. While I am completely pro-people-working-on-their-relationships, sometimes breaking up is the right thing for two people, and I don’t think that we need to villainize people because they decided that splitting up was the best option for everyone involved.

Maybe I’m wrong, and maybe people do give up on relationships or marriages too easily but 1) I don’t see how that’s any of my personal business because I can’t read minds or control people and 2) how is rushing into marriage the solution to this?

Anyway, the article says this next:

One reason is because there is not a commitment when you move in before marriage.

Oh, sorry AllProDad.com Staff, I must have missed you when my boyfriend and I discussed at length about when we felt were ready to move in together. Speak up next time, won’t you?

Moving on.

3. Your children will be negatively affected. To the parents who have children, your kids are three times as likely to be expelled from school or get pregnant, five times more likely to live in poverty, and 22 times more likely to be incarcerated — all because you choose to live with someone you’re not married to.

Those stats are from the same shady article, so take that as you will. I also feel like there are some cause and effect issues — I have to wonder if there are some single parent/born into poverty factors that haven’t been taken into account. Again, they didn’t cite sources, so your guess is as good as mine.

Maybe it’s in the Bible and all of us just ignored it.

4. It makes you lazy. As a married man, I know that once dating ends, the relationship changes. Living together removes the “being your best” part of your relationship. Kind of like most job interviews — you wore the suit to the interview, but once hired, you show up in khakis and a polo.

Aha! So AllProDad.com Staff is married! And lazily so! I’ll figure out your secret identity yet, AllProDad.com Staff, if it’s the last thing I do!

And the interview analogy kind of falls apart when you consider that few jobs ask you to wear a suit every day, and it will probably just serve to make your coworkers uncomfortable if you’re constantly trying to wow them with your fancy attire.

I don’t know about you guys, but my favoritest part of being in a relationship isn’t when he brings me out to fancy dinners or surprises me with flowers (though I do like those things very much, Mikey!), it’s when we spend an entire Saturday on the couch in our sweats rewatching the first season of Dexter and ordering in pizza and I don’t have to wear makeup or *shudder* Spanx (I know. I don’t have to wear either one of those things. Please don’t yell at me) and we can both just be ourselves and not put on a little play showing only our very best side all of the time. Because just being ourselves is what I like about us, and if that works for us, good. And I don’t give a shit if AllProDad.com Staff says differently.

And with that rather sappy sentiment, we come to the fifth reason why shacking up is such a terrible idea:

5. Saving on rent. Mentioned above.

That’s how he ends it! WHAT IS THAT?!

That doesn’t even make sense! Unless Mr. Staff got confused and, maybe instead of offering a reason not to shack up, he gave us something that’s not a good enough reason to shack up?

I guess I’ll just have to track down AllProDad.com Staff and ask him what he meant.

(Image via Shutterstock)

About Jessica Bluemke

Jessica Bluemke grew up in the suburbs of Chicago and graduated from Ball State University in 2008 with a BA in Literature. She currently works as a writer and resides on the North side of Chicago.


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