Adam and I are routinely asked if we encounter conflicts or obstacles in our relationship that are direct results of our small living space. Like every other duo on this planet, we have our disagreements. But the honest answer is no-- I actually believe that our compact quarters have made us stronger as a unit.
We recently tried to recall any arguments we’ve had that were spurred on by the fact that we’re basically at each other’s heels (or in each other’s faces) 24 hours a day, and we could only come up with ONE memory:
In our cottage, which is under 400 sqft, the bathroom opens up to the kitchen/living room. That doorway is not even 1-foot away from the bedroom, but there’s no privacy whatsoever in that single step between the spaces. So anyone in the kitchen/office/living room will see anyone who’s moving from the bathroom to the bedroom, or vice versa.
Shortly after Adam left his job and began staying home with West full-time, his family came to visit. I was in the shower when he welcomed them into the cottage, and I discovered upon exiting the bathroom in my towel that EVERYONE was sitting right there (like 5 feet away), waiting to greet me. We all laughed— after all, it’s family. But I pulled Adam aside and requested that he please entertain guests on the porch or in the garden the next time I’m about to get in or out of the shower. (And let’s be honest— once you have a kid, showers don’t happen as often as they used to, so I didn’t feel like I was asking for too much.)
However, a few days later, I walked out of the bathroom in my towel (wearing my portable breast pump beneath it) to discover some of our friends lounging around the living room with Adam. I then proceeded to flip out in front of everyone. (It wasn’t my finest moment.) Adam was just trying to be a good host, but that can sometimes be tricky in a small space.
But that’s pretty much it. Solid communication is a must in a tiny home or apartment, and after nearly 7 years here, I think that part of our lives flows fairly smoothly.
So. Moving into a small space with your partner? Congratulations! It’s such a delight. (But I’d advise investing in a nice robe.)