Many unmarried couples think that marriage is a bliss, until they actually get married and live together. Although marriage really is waking up with the love of your life every single day, there are many issues and challenges a couple needs to face that could make them realize that there is so much more to it than just being in love.
Sure there are ways to improve your marriage, but what if you could actually deal with those issues even before you say, ‘I do’. Robert Scuka of the National Institute of Relationship Enhancement says that if a couple doesn’t deal with them before they get hitched, they would need to deal with them when they are already a married couple.
The New York Times lists the issues couples deal with and made a list of 13 important question you need to ask your partner before you get married:
1. How did your family discuss issues? Did they throw plates, calmly discussed them or just silently shut down when there were in disagreement?
Every couple has to deal with differences, and their success as a married couple is determined by how they deal with them. Asking your partner how their family deal with these differences will give you a ‘preview’ of how you will deal with issues as a married couple.
2. Are we going to have kids? If we do, are you going change diapers?
This is a very important question the couple needs to discuss honestly. Raising children is not for everyone and there are many concerns related with raising children that a couple needs to answer: How many children are we going to have? Who will take care of our child? Are you willing to quit your job to take care of the kids?
3. Will our experiences with our exes help or hinder our marriage?
A research revealed that having had many relationships can increase the risk of divorce and lower marriage quality because of the tendency of one of the couples to compare their previous relationship to their present partner. Raising this issue at the beginning of the relationship can help the couple.
4. Is religion important and how are we going to spend religious holidays?
A couple with different religious backgrounds need to deal with this especially before they have children. Would each couple pursue their own religion? How will they introduce religion to their children?
5. Finances: What is current worth right now? Is my debt going to be your debt?
Many people are more embarrassed to talk about money than sex, and this is an issue every couple needs to discuss before they get married. Being honest with your partner about your financial status is critical, which is something that some couples fail to discuss before they get married.
6. Finances: How much would you be willing to spend on your watch, car, or shoes?
Knowing how much your partner is willing to spend on an item is a great indicator of how careful or reckless they spend. A couple should be on the same page on this or at least be able to accept their partner’s spending habits before they get married.
7. Can you deal with my doing things without you?
Although marriage is spending a couple’s life together, there still are a lot of activities each of the couple wants to do without their partner. It is important to discuss and face this issue head on so you or your partner wouldn’t need to face rejection issues when either one wants to pursue an interest alone.
8. Do we like each other’s parents?
Knowing how you feel about each other’s parents can help the couple manage their relationship with their in-laws if they do not have a positive feeling about their partner’s parents. Would you, as a couple, distance yourself from your in-laws after the marriage? Or are you going to help improve your spouse’s relationship with your folks?
9. How important is sex to you?
Sex is very important in marriage and a couple’s expectation about sex gets higher after marriage. A couple should discuss what their partner wants in sex, how often they would do it, and how important sex is.
10. Is watching pornography okay? How far should each go when it comes to flirting?
Couples should be able to discuss about their attitudes towards pornography, flirting and sexual exclusivity. Would spending time alone with someone of the opposite sex be okay to your partner? Would it be okay to watch pornographic movies? Couples are usually embarrassed to discuss this issue before marriage which can actually hurt or anger a partner if it only gets dealt with after marriage.
11. Do you know all the ways I say “I love you”?
Couples have many differences and expectations on love can also be different. Knowing your partner’s “love language” will help set realistic expectations and help prevent heartache from mistakenly thinking that your partner doesn’t love you anymore.
12. What are the things that you like about me? What things do you actually dislike?
There would be many times that challenges outweigh our admiration for our partner, and knowing how each of you would deal with it is very important. “Clicking together” isn’t enough to have lasting marriage. It is important to focus on what you adore about your partner instead of looking into what is annoying about them.
13. Where are we going to be as a couple ten, twenty years from now?
Knowing the answer to where the couple would be ten, twenty years from now and keeping it in mind when conflicts arise can help them endure their marriage as they work towards their relationship goals.
These are only a few questions that a couple needs to ask before they get hitched. Knowing the answers to them can help them understand their partner and how they can deal with these issues when they arise.
Source: New York Times