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If you crash at each other’s places but don’t technically live together yet, University of Missouri researchers have a new name for your quasi-cohabitation: A “stayover relationship.”
Yup, researchers verified that you stay over you girlfriend’s house. But this well known fact of life made us think: If you’re staying over your girlfriend’s house all of the time (and vice versa) this could cause some serious roommate conflicts. Here’s your guide for charming the roommates—both hers and yours.
Win Over Her Roommates
Make a Nice Gesture
“When you start a relationship with someone, you start a relationship with everyone in her social circle,” says David Steel, M.A., and founder of the Relationship Coaching Institute. When you meet the parents, it’s a good idea to bring wine, right? A similar concept applies to the roommates.
Bring back dessert from your coffee date or buy a six-pack to share with everyone, suggests Steel. This casually shows that you’re thinking about them—without being creepy. (Save the chocolate-covered strawberries for your girlfriend, please.)
Let Her Spend Time with Them
If it seems like her roommates don’t like you, it might not be personal. “People often get insulted when they feel ‘ditched’ because of a significant other,” says Steel. We know you want to sleep over every night and have mind-blowing sex. And she probably does, too. But encourage her to make time for the people who were there before you.
Don’t Piss Off YOUR Roommates
Stalk Her on Facebook—with Your Friends
When you first start dating, casually ask your roommates what they think of her while you’re already on Facebook, says Geoffrey Greif, Ph.D., author of Buddy System: Understanding Male Friendships. This is an easy way to informally probe for their opinion and show that you value their thoughts, while allowing them to see another side of her, he says.
Change the Setting
“Go to a bar in a large group,” says Greif. “This will reduce any one-on-one pressure and they can bond in a non-territorial venue.” If your roommates see her as more than the “woman who sleeps over,” they’re more likely to be cool with it.