There is nothing sexier than living with someone who is working with you in partnership towards a common vision for a life well-lived. But unlike the whirlwind marriages we read about in romance novels or the ones we watch on soap operas, moving from casual dating to a serious relationship to the final stage of getting married is a gradual process in reality.
Dating, and being engaged is a lot different from being married. Suddenly you’re not just sharing your lives together in the most intimate manner possible; you’re also sharing a lot of other things you may not have counted on. You can’t keep something to yourself anymore, because if you do and your spouse finds out, he/she may take offence and then little cracks might just start to surface in the marriage, which will turn to bigger cracks over time.
So before I say “I DO” and commit my life to you totally and expectedly forever, I might want to ask these questions and discuss these topics:
As my woman, what is your idea about children? How many do you want and how should they be raised? What are your thoughts about discipline? Would you consider fun in marriage to be over if there are no children, or would you still make efforts to make our marriage fun regardless? If we are blessed with children, will I suddenly become less important? Will you just live for our children or the whole family?
Many religions frown at premarital sex. While that might be a good thing (depending on who is looking at it), talking about our sexual needs before marriage is important to ensure both of us are sexually compatible. And if we are already having sex in our relationship, what about the long term when we are now officially man and wife? What are the expectations for sex long after that initial passion has worn off? It’s not just about frequency (twice a week, twice a month), but also about sexual and romantic styles both in and outside of the bedroom. Would you still expect that I will always initiate sex? How do you let me down tactfully without hurting my feelings if I want sex and you don’t for any reason? Would you use sex as punishment if I do anything wrong?
3. Family pattern
We have a saying in my place that “A bad spouse can be managed; but one can’t manage bad in-laws” While we’re not doomed to repeat negative family patterns, being aware of what to expect ahead of time will allow us to enter into the marriage eyes wide open. So, I would want to know if the older members of your family are fetish or have tendencies to be. Would they ask us to consult a family oracle if we don’t have children on time? Do they have some practices that don’t go with my own beliefs?
Would your mum believe she has the final say when we disagree on issues because her own mum was doing same?
4. Approach to finances
We may never even talk much about money when we are dating. But suddenly when marriage makes things official, money becomes a hot issue. The truth is we all have different approaches to money. Some people are savers and some, misers; while others are carefree and don’t give it as much thought. How money was handled when you were growing up often has a big impact on how you deal with it as an adult. So, we need to ensure our financial and spending styles are on the same page. I should know before tying the knot if you would say “My money is mine, and his money is ours” or if you would expect both of us to manage our finances separately or both of us will jointly manage our finances
after the wedding.
5. Resolution to disagreements
Arguments and disagreements sometimes come because of internal or external stress, but as we know, stress is constant in modern day living. Do our arguments get really personal, really fast? Do you or I always seem to veer off topic and bring up other unrelated things that derail the argument or turn them to a blame game? Do you always want to be right about everything we argue about? Or do you just keep malice for days after every argument until you satisfy yourself? We both need to realize all relationships have arguments and disagreements, it’s how they are resolved that matters. So now, not later is the time to improve the way we communicate with each other. Remember, it’s all about compromise and forgiveness, and getting better. So, these and some other personal things are what I’d like to discuss with you before I say the two important words, “I DO”.
About the Writer
: Chris Bamidele is a passionate and unapologetic Nigerian, who believes in God and humanity. He is a writer, blogger, and an aspiring Television Director; and an optimist to the core. He blogs at www.chrisbamidele.wordpress.com and tweets @Chrisbamidele.
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This article was first published on 8th May 2015
Chris Bamidele is a passionate and unapologetic Nigerian, who believes in God and humanity. He is a writer, blogger, and an aspiring Television Director; and an optimist to the core. He blogs at www.chrisbamidele.wordpress.com and tweets @Chrisbamidele.
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