What is the general feeling about Sensei testing the GF (boyfriend or spouse)? Should they be tested outside of the dojo
by an impartial party? Do former GF's feel that their rank held the same weight when their training situation changed?
My old sensei tested his (then) wife for nidan, but I doubt he cut her any slack, because for him it would probably be important that who he was with actually be good at aikido! Depends on the personality of the sensei?
As for changing dojos, where I am now, most people start a few ranks below where they were before, but can progress pretty quickly back up, and for me it will probably be no different. People tell me my technique is solid, but there are some stylistic differences to get used to.
Regarding my old sensei, there's this rumor going around that he sold the dojo to his current girlfriend (who started off as and still is his student), and that she is taking out loans of some sort for him. Ok, so they're serious (if the rumor is true). Maybe they'll even get married. But how does that play out for the senior students? How do people feel about paying your fees to someone who was definitely considered a beginner (6th kyu) until they got involved with the teacher? Would you care? Not care? Probably most people there don't know/haven't heard.