Tying the knot – do you know who you are marrying?
Getting married should be one of the happiest days of your life but the big day isn’t the end of the story. There is a world of difference between planning a wedding and preparing for a marriage. In the excitement of falling in love it’s possible to forget to ask, how well do I know this person?
How well do you communicate with each other? Good communication is an essential component in a healthy marriage. This isn’t just a matter of how much you talk, it also involves how much you listen and how in tune you are with each other’s feelings and needs.
Inevitably there will be times in your marriage when things are difficult or tempers flare. Even the rosiest of romances can become a minefield if the way you or your partner expresses anger or stress is unacceptable or unhealthy. Although no-one enjoys arguing, if you have overcome some problems and negotiated compromises before you get married you will be in a stronger position than if you have never had an argument.
Good communication also extends to your vision of your future together as a married couple. You may think you’re on the same page with regards to the bigger picture but it’s important that you talk about individual hopes and dreams as well as your shared aspirations.
Do you love and accept the person you are going to marry as they are today? Or are you hoping they will change once they are married and come round to your way of thinking?
It’s not unusual for people to believe that marriage will cure problems in a relationship or encourage someone to become more responsible. What if it doesn’t? You can’t marry someone based on a vision of how you think they could be in the future – you have to marry them as they are now and accept that they may not change.
One of the best things about being married is having a partner – someone who is on your side and pulling in the same direction as you. Is your partner your number one fan? Are they the person who really sees and knows you and appreciates you more than anyone else?
To consider marrying someone you should feel that they care enough to listen to what you think and feel and give you support when you need it.
In a healthy marriage the scales can tip both ways with each person sometimes being the one getting support and sometimes being the one giving it. If it’s all one way there will be an imbalance and the marriage will struggle if the stronger of the two gets into difficulties.
Do you trust the person you are going to marry? Trusting someone is more than just believing that they wouldn’t lie to you. Their openness and honesty about their past; their ability to sense when you are having a hard time; how good they are at fulfilling promises etc, will all affect how much your instincts tell you to trust and rely on someone. If you are going to marry someone this trust should be rock solid as it’s the foundation the marriage will be built upon.
Some people enter into a period of premarital counselling to help answer these and other questions. Asking yourselves these questions, and taking the time to really get to know your partner, their values, beliefs, character and integrity could save you from a lot of disappointment later on.
You wouldn’t buy a house without having a survey done so don’t try and build a marriage without solid foundations.
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