Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively have bought a home together. It sounds like fun, doesn't it? They met on the set of "The Green Lantern" and have been moving forward as a couple ever since. It's easy to get swept up in the romance of it all, especially the idea of playing house. But they -- and anyone at their stage of the dating game -- must have asked themselves: How long do you date, and how long do you wait, before you decide to become mates ... as in roommates?
Taking that step sometimes feels seamless because you are spending so much time together anyway. Maybe he's cleared out a drawer for you already, or maybe he goes home only once a week these days to water his plants and gather his mail. How different could living together possibly be? The answer is ... very.
There are a few points you should be aware of before becoming domestic partners, because that very term implies that you will share not just the love, but also the housework, the bills, the pet care, the lawn work, the actual square footage and whatever else goes along with cohabitating.
Talk before you start packing those boxes. Make sure you both understand what it will entail -- it's more than just candlelit dinners and breakfasts in bed. Understand that making it official in that sense also brings along an accountability factor that wasn't there before, as your expectations of each other will change. Discuss how you plan to share the responsibilities, whether they are financial or practical. It is important to have a plan about how you are going to proceed.
Hopefully Ryan and Blake have already worked some of these details out: Their new home in Bedford, N.Y., awaits.
-- Relationship expert Dr. Jane Greer is the creator of "Shrink Wrap" - national commentary on what we can learn from celebrity relationships - and host of "Let's Talk Sex" at Healthylife.net. Her book, "What About Me? Stop Selfishness From Ruining Your Relationship," is available nationwide.
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