11/08/2013 01:39 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Pros And Cons Of The Nearly-Wed Trend, From Dr. Gail Saltz (VIDEO)

According to psychiatrist Dr. Gail Saltz when couples decide to live together before getting married, there are a few important questions which should be addressed. Are there any downsides? Are couples choosing to live together for the same reasons? Some people decide to live together as a prelude to marriage. They want the institution of marriage, they want children -- all of those "marriage things." However some other people might treat living together as more of a temporary situation with a "let's just see what happens" attitude. Dr. Gail Salts says that the most important thing is for the couple to have a frank and honest conversation before deciding to move in together so that both people are moving towards the same goal.

Couples who live together have a higher rate of splitting up versus couples who marry. Psychiatrist Dr. Gail Saltz believes this may be, in part, due to the fact that people who live together prior to getting married simply don't feel the need to stay. The problem of living together before marriage is the ease of leaving. It feels safe for people with a commitment phobia or people who are just not ready to make a firm relationship decision.

Another factor to consider are the physical and mental health benefits many believe marriage brings, from mental wellness to providing healthy examples for children. Dr. Gail Saltz points out that these benefits could be forfeited entirely by couples who opt to live together. On the other hand, there are benefits to living together as opposed to being single, especially when finances are taken into account.

The most important takeaway of this trend is that both people need to be on same page going into the arrangement -- a successful outcome will only be reached if both parties are moving towards the same end goal.

Get more of Dr. Gail Saltz's advice for maintaining a relationship here:

Maintaining A Healthy Relationship

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