“Last December, my partner Rebecca and I bought a row house with another couple. Our wedding was this May. Next month, we’re expecting a baby—the other couple’s baby.”
This is Ari Weisbard. He and his wife Rebecca lived for years with roommates, and enjoyed the communal living style. So when they were looking around for a new place to live, their fears weren’t about being able to pay the mortgage or finding a nice neighborhood (though who's to say, maybe there were issues;) they were about feeling isolated in that marriage. You know, living with the other person for the rest of your life.
They didn’t want to leave friendships and social circles behind. They wanted to change their nuclear living style into a more…communal one. Luckily for them, they found another couple who felt the same way. They all moved in together. And very, very quickly after the purchase of the home—the other couple got pregnant. Worst nightmare? No, says Ari.
“When we talk with friends who already have kids about our living arrangement, some are shocked that we are willing to subject ourselves to living with a crying newborn who is not our own. Others can’t imagine trying to agree on consistent rules for the kids, or having every minute of their parenting observed by other adults. The idea spooks them,” he writes. “I do share those concerns to an extent, but raising kids with just one other adult scares me even more.”
Oy. Dude. That’s because you don’t have any kids. It is impossible to know how you are going to react as a parent to your child until you have that child. As far as the living situation goes, I’m open to people creating all sorts of living arrangements. Honestly, good for them.
Personally, I don’t see how this would work for me. But that’s not to say it won’t work for someone else. I’d be curious to see an update from Ari in two years. And then again in another two years. Like any other situation, theirs will evolve, and I wonder where their communal living journey will take them.