Admit it – you’ve been daydreaming about your wedding day since you were a little girl and if not that, you PVR the new episodes of Say Yes to the Dress and Four Weddings every week. Yes finding the perfect dress, the perfect day and the perfect venue may sound great but it’s only a (very) small part of the equation to this milestone occasion. The most important thing is to ask yourself is: am I ready to be married? If you’ve been pondering this question or you just want to humor yourself here are 10 things to ask ponder before you say “I Do.”
Are you ready to commit?
This is a pretty reasonable question to ask– especially since commitment is one of the top characteristics when you’re deciding whether or not to spend the rest of your life with someone. And this isn’t just committing to the person per se, it is committing to the fact that they never clean up the dishes after they’re done eating or their annoying habit of leaving the kitchen cupboards open. Even though you may not like it, you need to look at marriage as commitment of all things good and bad.
Do you want the same things?
Kids? Big house? Management positions? These things may be menial when you’re so much in love it hurts, but it will hurt even more when you find out they don’t have the same dream of owning a big house by the lake with 2.5 kids. Take the time to discuss these details and like most things in life, some things can be compromised just as long as both people genuinely agree together.
Do you communicate effectively with another?
Communication between men and women never change. The picture usually looks like this: men don’t know how to communicate with women and women don’t understand why men don’t like to communicate more. Although this is how has been for years, communicating is so important and it is the foundation of a strong marriage. My Grandmother always tells me no matter how different I am from my fiancé©, I need to listen and try my best to understand his needs and I think this advice is right on the ball. And if you don’t communicate effectively right now in your relationship, it’s better late than never to start.
How do you feel about each other’s families and friends?
Some people would argue that you’re marrying the person – not their family, but if you don’t have a good standing with your soon-to-be spouse’s family and friends, problems are bound to arise. Make sure you make an effort to communicate (even if its just a friendly hello) to his dad and sister or his college buddy and show him you accept everything that comes with him, even his very opinionated mother!
Do you know each other’s financial backgrounds?
Does he know about your addiction to buying shoes every Thursday in honor of the unofficial shoe holiday you created in college? Probably not, but if you’re planning on tying the knot you’ll have to tell him. If Til Debt Do Us Part has taught us anything it’s that money woes are a big problem in marriages and often hiding them are just as bad as lying or cheating on our partner. If you don’t mind sharing your finance history with them, that’s great, but if the idea of letting him see your chequing account makes you cringe, you may need to find another way to discuss money.
Can you be independent?
Let’s clear the air right now: you do not loose your independence when you get married (or at least I hope so). There will be times when you’ll need space and that’s okay – no one says you have to be joined at the hip and it’s okay to take time to still do the hobbies and things you love. However, just remember not to be too independent to the point of going back to being a Bachelorette or Bachelor and forget that you have someone who wants to be involved in your life.
Can you work on a team?
Whether you’re the leader or the cheerleader, be open to both scenarios and think of marriage as a life long team where the goal is to win as a successful duo. Yes, there will be ups and downs, but every team member needs to work together so the good times override the bad times.
Are you where you want to be in your life and/or career?
If you’re not happy or feel like you’re established in the personal aspects of your life like finances, career or personal goals, don’t rush into marriage. The worst thing you can do is to forget about your dreams and goals and wind up resenting them your partner later on for what you could have accomplished.
Can you name 3 things about him/her – without their help?
Sounds easy, right? Wrong! I’ve met married couples that don’t even know what each other’s favorite food is and they’ve been married for 5 years! Take the time to really know and learn the basics about each other, so next time you wont be embarrassed when someone asks you when their birthday is (and to all the men: whoever said it was okay to forget birthdays or anniversary’s once and a while are completely wrong).
Are you ready to date the same person for the rest of your life?
Essentially this is what it comes down to. You will never date another guy again and the word single will not pass your lips again (unless used in another context), but marriage is a great opportunity to – if you feel you’ve the right person for you – to share each and every moment with, to learn new things and just start a new journey with a partner in crime you can trust and love.