Marriage is a beautiful experience when you are yolked with a kindred spirit and you are both on one accord with one another. With that being said marriages can be challenging when there is discord and disagreements. I firmly believe that when you reflect internally before getting married you can step into the relationship with more to offer and be able to receive challenges with a new strength.
1. What is love and do we both agree on the definition? It’s important to define what love is to you and what love means to him because they might be two different definitions and might be expressed in two very different ways. Some couples express love by buying each other items, some through cooking, some through sex, some through quality time. How do you express your love for one another? I think the strongest couples redefine the word and meaning together as time goes on.
2. Where do I want to live and where does he? Does he want to move back in with mama? Be close to his hometown? Travel and see the world? Life in city or suburbs? Where you live determines so much of your lifestyle so talk about it now. Is he flexible with his plans or is he very stubborn and won’t budge? It’s in the moments of controversy and challenge that show your man’s true personality. There is no harm in asking these questions ladies, this is your life and future as well!
3. Do I want to have children and does he? Children change lives forever! Do you want a soccer team and he’s cool with one? That can cause ill feelings towards each other as well as regret if you both don’t express what you really want. (Now don’t go all crazy and start talking about this one random night about having babies. My suggestion would be to say: In my lifetime I’d like to have a big family because family is important to me. My life wouldn’t feel complete with out them. Or if you don’t want lots of children let him know why. Do you want to travel and you want to keep your expense low? Be honest about it. Life live with no regrets. Strong women express the desires of their lives!
4. How was he raised and what does he believe to be of value in life? Are we on the same page about that? How we are raised determines our foundations. Some people grow and mature beyond that foundation but it’s still at the core of who we are. So talk about it. Did he grow up poor? It might determine his drive to make money and build wealth in his future. Did he grow up in the church? You might still have a man of great faith and prayer. Did he grow up in a single parent home? He might make excuses about not having a father around or he can use that to become the father he never had. Talk about it and begin to identify the underlying principles of who your man is. One piece of advice, one a person shows you who they are, believe them.
5. Does he support my growth in all or most areas of development? I’ve found that some ladies go hard for the men they love. They want to give their relationship all they’ve got to their man knows how much he’s loved and appreciated. Is the same way around for your man? Does he go hard to encourage you, push you, support you? It’s important for him to begin to learn you and how he can best support the person you and more importantly support the women you are becoming.
6. Am I ready to support his growth in all or most areas of development? This is similar to the question above. So many women are groomed to find a great spouse but he have to remember our responsibility of being a good spouse. We can’t blindly look at what others do for us but what we do for others. What type of women are you becoming? Would someone be proud to call you their wife? Do you keep yourself up to par? Do you speak life and encouragement over people? Are you loyal? are you dependable? Are you clean? Do you know how to go above and beyond by cooking and doing things you future hubby likes? Girl take it up a notch because if you have a good man, do what’s necessary to keep him!
7. Do we speak about the future and do we share similar passions for it? Do you all talk about the future or is everything just about the now? Bring it up in conversation and see where his conversation lies. Does he talk about you two? Children? Traveling? Careers? It’s important to know that he has a plan for his own life and better yet one for the two of you. You want a husband who is going to the head of your household and the head is the visionary and the leader. Is he capable of leading?
8. How does he handle money? Do we handle it in the same way? Finances are the number one cause of fights in marriage. If you all address the issues that you have now regarding money you will save yourself a headache in the future. Will you merge accounts? Does he pay bills on time? Does he maintain good credit and see that as a tool for future financial stability? When it comes time to purchase your first home is NOT the time to just be bringing these things up.
9. Does he have friends who support a committed marriage lifestyle? Your guys friends have a big influence on who he is and who he is becoming. Do they encourage finding a long-life partner or are they still dragging him to the strip clubs and helping cover for him and get others women’s numbers? Be discerning about who they are and what they represent? Also how do they treat you when you are around and how does your guy introduce you to them? These friends will be in your future so make sure they are good men of character and integrity.
10. Can I genuinely see myself marrying this person aside from the fact that he says he loves me and is currently showing me affection? Do you have a Mr. Right or a Mr. Right Now? It’s cool when things are going okay right now but longevity includes future. Make sure you are taking in what’s going on now but you can stand firm in where you are going in your future, so you know that you have one. Ask the questions that need to be asked. Have the conversations that need to be had. Take the time that needs to be taken. There’s no rush….remember you area quality women who deserves a quality man. Best of luck in your union!