You might have wedding fever, but a strong marriage is not built on this. You and your partner must have some important conversations that will give you an idea of whether you are right for each other long term. Too often couples enter marriage with an incomplete view of what it’s all about and in this post I will discuss the preparations that must happen before you get engaged.
Sure love is what keeps marriages strong, but we can’t deny that financial stability is just as important in marriage. Find out if your partner has a steady work history and what his average annual salary is. Also discuss your financial status and talk about your views on money. You might be a frugal person who believes in saving for long term goals while your partner is more of a spendthrift. Discuss who will manage most of the household bills and whether you will have a joint or separate checking account.
Children or No Children?
This is also important in a pre-engagement conversation. If you want children, find out if your partner desires this too. If you both want children, talk about how many you are interested in having. Decide on when you want children and discuss your parenting values. Will you start a college fund for future children you will have? Do you believe in corporal punishment for children but your spouse does not? Will your children have a religious or non-religious upbringing? These issues can’t be ignored.
Talk with your partner about what he or she expects regarding intimacy. Discuss which types of sex positions you are comfortable with and which ones make you uneasy. You need to figure out how often you want to be intimate during the week, and discuss any physical insecurities or past abuse that is causing a lack of confidence in this area.
Check Your Motives
Some couples think that they are marrying because they love each other but then realize that they did it for the wrong reasons. Maybe they married because of financial reasons or it could be because their friends were getting married and they don’t want to be left out. Make sure that your motives for marriage are right and not based on unrealistic expectations.
It is also important to learn more about your partner’s family before getting engaged as you will spend a lot of time with them throughout your marriage. Watch how your partner interacts with his family and see if he respects them overall. Get to know his relatives and always respect them. Brush off any remarks they make that you might not agree with but be assertive when they attempt to overstep their boundaries with you. This gives you an idea of what to expect at gatherings with them in the future. It’s also important because your future children will be be influenced by them somewhat.
Your Medical History
You might not see this discussion as important before the engagement, but you should know this because it might affect the health of your future children as well as the dynamics of your future marriage. If you had lung cancer in the past but currently in remission, tell this to your partner because sometimes the cancer might return even after treatment worked. If you have a family history of heart failure, mention this. Your partner might be able to assist you in creating a healthier lifestyle.
Consider Yours and Your Partner’s Maturity Levels
The last thing you want is to get married while you have an adolescent mentality. Figure out how the two of you solve conflicts and understand each other’s personalities. Learn the importance of extending forgiveness and apologizing when necessary. Don’t resort to petty put-downs during disagreements and be an active listener during discussions. Show respect for the relationship by not cheating on your partner or not divulging his or secrets to everyone.
Take the Life Skills Test
Household chores are a part of marriage as well as childrearing. It’s a good idea to discuss certain life skills that you both have or don’t have. Can you prepare delicious home cooked meals? Are you skilled at combing little girls’ hair? Do you know basic household skills such as unstopping a toilet, fixing a clogged sink, changing a flat tire, or painting walls in a room? Self-sufficiency is important because it saves you money and it comes in handy when you cannot hire a professional. Watch online tutorial videos then pratice what you learned. You can also get advice from relatives and friends.
When you examine yourself and your partner thoroughly using the above mentioned ideas, you will figure out clearly whether the two of you should marry or not.