Originally Posted On: Questions to Ask Yourself Before Saying ‘I Do’ – Sophie’s Nursery
Not every loving relationship ends in marriage, but weddings become a significant step in life when a couple finally decides to get married. It signifies your commitment to each other and a deliberate decision to spend your lives together as a unit. Australian marriages in 2018 recorded 119,188 nuptials, an increase of 6,234 compared to the previous year. With these figures expected to go higher in subsequent years, it is imperative to be sure before tying the knot. However, have you considered how important it is to ask questions before saying, ‘I do’? Here are a few questions you should ask yourself before you get married.Are your life goals compatible with your partner’s?
It is logical to want to know how compatible your goals are with your partner. Life goals change over the years, and it will be in your best interest to discuss them now before it’s too late. Be open and transparent with your loved one on the specifics of what you want to achieve professionally and personally. If you wish to take a path completely different from that of your partner’s, it may become a contentious subject in the long run.
Imagine a scenario where your partner prefers to be away travelling half of the year, whereas you have a strong aversion to long travels. How do you come to terms with a situation like that? Unfortunately, people forget that agreeing to marry someone is a commitment to help them attain fulfillment in every aspect of life. That is not to say your entire marriage life should be focused on making your partner happy. Instead, both of you should be able to create a structure where your differences complement each other.What are your views on kids?
Is your partner interested in raising kids? If they are, how many do they want? Would they prefer to hold off until a few years after marriage? These are questions you need to find answers to before deciding to get married. Have you both visited a physician to determine if the other has no fertility issues that could hamper procreation? What options would you like to take if procreation is not possible? More importantly, how do you intend to raise your kids? Values and disciplining styles differ from person to person and is a great way to begin this discussion. Several married couples advise lovers to desist from the idea of changing their partner’s position on having kids or not. It could become a recipe for divorce or resentment for the spouse in question.How do you prepare for marriage?
Building a successful marriage is not based on just the love you have for each other; many factors play fundamental roles in making the marriage successful. Besides, there is no perfect marriage on the planet. The mental and emotional maturity of the parties involved is one of such factors. Love and relationships do not thrive on intuition. Instead, they require additional tools that both individuals are willing to use deliberately. Are you both willing to celebrate Saint Valentine’s every year? Find ways to make it unique or create a romantic tradition for the two of you when you get married. How do both of you intend to prepare for marriage after all the wedding pomp and pageantry? You can decide to have home dinners together and become genuinely interested in each other’s hobbies. Is it gardening, reading, or web browsing? Whatever that is, both of you should develop a passion for these activities as you begin the marital journey.Can both of you spend time away from the other and maintain trust?
Trust is a crucial foundation for any relationship, and marriage is no different. In addition to expressing confidence in each other, it is a healthy practice to rely on the other for support. However, over-reliance can easily translate into unhealthy codependency, which could negatively impact the marriage. Total dependency breeds an atmosphere of contempt and resentment. If the ‘stronger’ spouse is away, the other inadvertently entertain thoughts of mistrust, insecurity, wariness, caginess, and misgivings. In a majority of cases, extreme codependency may be an indication of an underlying mental illness. Usually, marriage counsellors recommend that limited time spent away from each other is a healthy practice. If such a situation arises, both parties should be open to receiving help from a marriage therapist.
Marriage is an exciting journey as it is unpredictable, and while nobody likes addressing it, some not so happy instances may occur during the marriage. In questioning your trust issues, you should ask yourself what you may do if the trust is broken in your marriage.Do you have any religious beliefs?
What religious similarities or differences do you share? Is it uncomfortably different? It helps to know how your partner’s views (or lack of it) in your and their spirituality affect your lifestyle and relationship. If they’re not interested in spirituality and don’t agree with how you practice yours, that may be an indicator of worse problems further down the road. Instead, it would help if you looked out for someone who respects your religious opinions and may disagree with some aspects but still make a deliberate effort to uphold your concerns and treat you with dignity.
Religious matters are sensitive subjects for discussion and must be handled with caution. Also, bear in mind that spirituality has altered meanings for everybody. While one party sees it as regular at the worship place, another may interpret it as a personal relationship with a higher being. Another category of people views spirituality as a self-reflection of a particular way of life and how they relate to others. In other words, there is no specific explanation that defines what religion and spirituality mean to people.How is your spouse’s relationship with their family?
Whether you like it or not, a marriage to the person you love is ultimately a blend of your family and theirs. Potential in-laws automatically become an extension of familial connection. How does your soon-to-be spouse relate to their family? Do you sense affection or resentment from your partner to their family? Better yet, does your partner have kids from a previous relationship or marriage? Their kids will come as a full package when you tie the knot, turning you into a step-parent. Is it a scenario you can endure? Finding out information (especially when your partner is unwilling to disclose them) requires excellent observation tactics. Besides, when you notice such traits, that immediately indicates that all is not rosy on their familial end. In addition to this critical point, assess how comfortable you feel when with your partner’s family. Admittedly, every family has some dysfunctional traits but can you live with these? If you can overlook these issues, maybe your marriage will be blissful.
It is helpful to consider the prospects of spending a lifetime with your partner, should they become incapacitated. Life is unpredictable, and in situations like that, authentic characters come to the fore. Will you be willing to support them physically, emotionally, financially, and mentally? Will you be comfortable putting off buying your dream house just so that money goes into medical bills? Furthermore, this will also require putting all of their needs before yours. Adjustments such as these could make or break a relationship in the short to long-term. If you ever thought marriage is all about the grand wedding and living happily ever after, maybe now is the time to do a self-evaluation of your emotions.