What do you watch beyond the first date when he took you to see some random horror flick filmed with a handheld camera? You were too caught up in the hot and oily action as your hands grazed over eachother in the popcorn bucket to notice the three-act structure in front of you. A year and two months into the relationship and you’re not wearing Tory Burch flats and Topshop skinny jeans to the theaters anymore. No, you’re in sweats and determined to expel $10 worth of tears and laughs. Maybe you’re into psychoanalytic indie films about a woman’s budding journey in art, and he wants to see a middle-aged guy hop from one country to the next and mindlessly shoot at more middle-aged men. Unless you both met in an online chat forum for Wes Anderson fans, you and bae are going to have to make sacrifices when it comes to movie choices. And no, you can’t always go with the argument that you just have a better taste in movies.
As the comedian Aziz Ansari brought up in his show Master of None, differences in diet can suffocate dining experiences for couples. His character, Dev, is a raging carnivore, and his on-show girlfriend orders cornbread and a banana when they visit a barbecue restaurant. Discovering their contrasting lifestyles, Dev mourns over how they will never go “halfsies” on food. He has a good point; what do you do if your favorite meal is rare steak and your boyfriend only munches on vegan cabbage that’s been rinsed in the pure waters of the Tibetan mountains? True love is tested when you have to foresake a trip to In-N-Out for the vegetable juice bar to see the smile on your beau’s face.
Even more dramatic than the food ordeal is differences in animal preferences. However, fighting over whether you should get a dog or cat as your first pet is nothing when compared to an awful predicament that plagues real couples. This condition is called “allergies” and is a reality for many lovers. Before you say “I love you” just remember: that person’s allergy to cute labrador retriever puppies is your allergy too.
4. Netflix Shows
Netflix shows call for even more sacrifice than picking a movie at the theater. Unlike a film in the box office, there to give you a quick fix of imaginary worlds and dialogue, a series on Netflix is a big commitment. Which do you remember: the names of all the cast members in Love Actually, or every single worker in The Office? Netflix shows embed themselves in your mind and heart forever. Picking the show you will faithfully watch together with your boo will require an important sit-down talk on the couch when the time comes, as the decision will affect both of your futures.
5. Big/Little Spoon
The biggest compromise one makes in a committed, long-term relationship: who gets to be the Little Spoon? Sure, maybe in the first two months of casual dating, the guy will wrap his arms around you at every sleepover and act like it was his destiny to be the Big Spoon. But let’s be real. No one wants to be the Big Spoon. In a world where split checks have replaced chivalry, everyone is fighting one another for that coveted position. Feminist up and hug your man to sleep on some nights. The sweat overtaking your forehead may ruin the sentimentality of the embrace, but then will you know that you are in a mature, equal relationship.