Getting married is a big deal! And sometimes we can be so in love that we forget to be practical. Discuss these five practical questions with your boo before jumping into marriage.
People get in relationships for many reasons. Some reasons stem from how they were raised or their past experiences. On average most people get into relationships for love, companionship, to have children, to have a lifelong commitment, financial security, sex, religious beliefs or family pressure to have the fairytale wedding. Before getting married, consider several questions you should discuss with your partner while you are dating.
Question #1: What are your expectations for marriage? Many couples do not entertain the thought of “expectations.” Most couple just assume each other knows what they like and dislike. They feel that since they have been dating and everything has been good, they will be good in marriage too. However, assuming you know his or her likes and dislikes without truly asking and discussing is not smart. Expectations in marriage have to be discussed. For example, “Love is all we need for a good marriage.” Is that true? Does that make good sense? NO!! You need a lot more than love to survive a marriage because people show “love” in different ways. (We will talk about different ways people show love in a later post.) Expectations about marriage impact the level of satisfaction in the marriage, and that is a big deal.
Question #2: What are your views on finances and who will keep up with spending? Please ask/discuss with your partner about finances. How does he or she understand money, saving and spending? Who is the spender, and who is the saver? Money is one of the leading causes of conflict in a marriage. Texas Tech did a research study on how money affects relationships. The study suggests that economic hardship has negative effects on marriage. In fact, couples who are experiencing financial difficulties feel less satisfaction in the relationship. They feel hostile and uncommunicative and even blame each other for their financial downtown. To listen to how Jim and Teresa overcame financial turmoil after the 2008 economic crisis, click here. If you learn the importance of how money is to be used in a marriage, you have won a great battle. Money is a tool, and it should not run the relationship. Understanding money and financial stewardship will save you a lot of time in future arguments and discord.
Question #3: How important are my values, and how does my significant other feel about them? Couples fight about how they think their new family values should play out. If you do not discuss this question, you are sure to be disappointed. Even if you think you know the answers, it is important to discuss family values you want to pass down to your kids or how you might want your family to be different than the family you had growing up. In marriage, each person has to be willing to come together and share what they want to see in their new family.
Question #4: How do we plant to resolve conflict? Can you think back to a time when you were a child, playing around the house? And all of a sudden you heard your parents begin to argue? Did they physically fight, yell at each other? Go days without talking to one another? Chances are whatever you saw growing up, you will repeat in your relationships. You see, we are a product of our environment even when we try our very best not to be. Conflict is common in all marital relationships. The goal of any conflict is not to have conflict because it is inevitable, but to learn how to handle conflict in a way that is healthy for the relationship. Great couples experience conflict too. The only difference is that they handle it better.
Questions #5: What are your views about sex? Just so we’re clear, your parents had and continue to have sex. Did they teach you about sex? Or did you learn about sex from your friends or watching an episode of Keeping Up With the Kardashians? Married sex is so good, and it is a blessing!! Sex was ordained by the Creator of the Universe, and it is a beautiful act under the auspices of marriage. A satisfying sexual relationship is the results of a satisfying marital relationship. You’ll definitely be hearing more about sex throughout our blog.
When we as couples communicate with each other and discuss our desires and expectations, it brings about a sense of unity. In a marital relationship, unity is very important. It connects you. Everyone in a relationship wants to connect and have that “we’re on the same page” feeling. Be ready to face the reality that you and your significant other might not agree on some of these topics. Therefore, a decision has to be made on whether each of you will make changes or you will end the relationship. If you feel you need to discuss this with a professional, we are always here for you.
Thanks so much for reading! Need more help? Schedule a Strategy Session for your relationship today! We are here to help. Subscribe to our YouTube channel for more tips and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for encouragement. Until next time!