Let’s get married!

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Maybe not today, but it is something you want. So how do you tell a match that, without scaring them off?

Talking to a new date about how you want to get married and have kids is like going to a Zumba class at the gym for the first time – uncomfortable, awkward and, well, you’d really just rather not, thanks very much.

But, unfortunately, just like how you’re not going to get the body you want without sucking it up and pushing through, you’re not going to get the relationship you want if you’re not honest and upfront about what that looks like for you.

Take it from eharmony’s Dating and Relationship expert, Melanie Schilling, who knows first-hand how important it is to speak up. “When I was dating I found it very hard to admit to myself, let alone a bloke, that I wanted babies. I nearly missed the fertility boat and was lucky enough to conceive my baby at the age of 41 (thanks to a little scientific intervention). This ‘near miss’ made me really appreciate the importance of being honest with yourself and courageous with your dating conversations,” she says.

Of course, blurting out to a guy on a first date that you’ve got a wedding board on Pinterest and a savings account for kids’ school fees in between ordering a latte and asking for sugar isn’t cool.

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But you do want him to have an inkling of where you stand even before you guys get to the coffee part…

If you’re online dating, that means you make sure your profile reflects your life goals including kids, so that anyone who reads about you will have no doubt about what you want.

And the good news is that eharmony matches you with people who are on the same page about the big stuff like marriage, kids, values and ambitions so your potential dates are likely to be receptive of these goals anyway.

If you’re asking friends or family to introduce you to potential partners, make sure you let them know that you’re interested in ‘settling down’ so they can screen for you.

No matter how you meet your date, it’s a good idea to broach the topic on the second or third date anyway to ensure neither of you are wasting your time.

“You can test the water by asking broad, open-ended questions like ‘tell me about your family’ (this will reveal their family values) and ‘what do you see yourself doing in 5-10 years?’ (this will reveal if they see marriage and kids in their future),” advises Melanie. “Questions like these will indicate whether it’s safe to share your own intentions and give you a sense about how they are likely to respond.”

It might seem a bit ‘bunny boiler’ bringing kids up so early, but the truth is, if you and your date aren’t on the same page, that isn’t likely to change, and if your biological clock is ticking, you need to listen to this and honour it. “As a woman with a delicate window of fertility and if babies are on your mind, then you need to be honest about this,” says Melanie.

How have you approached the marriage and kids question with your dates? Let us know in the comments below or join the conversation on FacebookTwitter & Instagram. And if you are ready to narrow down the world of possibilities, sign up to eharmony today- find someone made for you.

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