Whilst trolling the Interweb for compelling things to share, Miss Wingman stumbled across a fascinating read in the NY Times. The article talks about the quirky habits we develop when living alone, and it got me to thinking about how difficult it is for us to let people into our weird little worlds – which is essentially what we do in relationships. It’s OK to be an odd duck when we’re behind the privacy of closed doors, but when those shutters get thrown open for the world (or the person you’re sleeping with) to see, that’s when things get interesting.

According to this assessment, as someone who has lived alone for years, I’m not alone in my strange apartment-dwelling ways. I, too, stand partially clothed in my kitchen preparing a snack. And closing the bathroom door? What’s the point if there’s no company over to shield oneself from?! I fully support it. I sometimes say things out loud to no one in particular, and I’ve come to accept the fact that the nice people in the conference room across the way have probably seen me naked on more than one occasion. So be it.

But, this does mean that one day I’ll have to adjust my bra-hanging-from-the-coat-rack ways to accommodate the (hypothetical) man in my life, unless he has a particularly good sense of humor when it comes to laundry.

And sleeping hours? Don’t even get me started. Anyone who could peer into my apartment at will would likely witness me wide awake, typing away or catching up on my DVR at 2am. My neighbors now think nothing of seeing me heading to the gym at 10pm or sauteing up some dinner at 11:30. I’m certain I keep vampire hours. We’re a strange breed, us solo dwellers, and one day we’ll be forced to change our spots (or at least show them to someone else).

The same goes for men, however, in adjusting their living and cleaning habits to eventually domesticate themselves enough to share a space with (read: not horrify) someone of the female persuasion. Suddenly you’ll not only have to close the bathroom door, but you’ll be asked to put the seat down, take your hand out of your shorts when couch lounging, and probably even stop screaming like a maniac during playoff games. Oh the travesty…So enjoy it while you can, boys, freedom is a fleeting thing.

Eat peanut butter right out of the jar, let your laundry pile up in the corner and blare your music first thing in the morning – or maybe that one’s just me. Revel in your solo living as long as possible, because one day we might actually look back on our tiny apartment days fondly and wish we’d appreciated them more. I’ll probably still sleep sideways in my bed, though, so I hope I end up with a man who doesn’t mind occupying a small portion of my mattress real estate.

But, we are capable of cleaning up our acts, we just need to be really, really sure before taking the plunge to live with someone. It’s a huge decision and one that, in this girl’s opinion, should only be arrived at when you’re certain that your names will one day occupy a marriage license, not just the same mailbox. The quickest way to get to the bottom of your compatibility is by living with your significant other. And if after a few months of wiping toothpaste out of the sink and enduring their Sounds of the Ocean Sleep CD you don’t want to murder each other, you’re probably fine. We just have to step outside our own comfort zone (which widens the longer we live alone) and consider another person’s habits. Because sometimes the easy part is sharing a life, the hard part is sharing a living space.GEEK WINGMAN

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