They say that getting married is one of the most important decisions of your life, and I don’t disagree with that, however, I think that when you know everything you need to know about someone in order to make the decision to marry them that it should an easy, no-brainer, wouldn’t want it any other way, kind of decision. Meaning when you and your partner align on what the future holds for your relationship and your life together, the actual act of getting married should be one of the easiest decisions you’ll ever make.
When you and your partner are on the same page about your future, getting married is an easy decision.
That’s not to say that you will have every little detail nailed down, but you should align (or at least understand one another’s) bigger, overarching goals and plans before you get married. In order to do this, there are a few important questions to ask before marriage that can help you decide whether or not starting a life together is a good idea. We are sharing six questions to ask and what to know before marriage here:
6 Questions To Ask Before You Get Married
1. What are your long-term financial goals?
If you’re thinking about marriage, you’ve probably already had a few money conversations with your significant other (or at least we hope that you have!). You may know what each other’s student loan or credit card debt is, how much you each pay for your car, and things like that, but one thing you should definitely talk about before you tie the knot is what long-term financial goals you both have. For example, if you want to save enough money for a down payment on a house but your partner is planning on allocating their money toward a different goal like paying off their debt first, you’ll want to know that before you get married. This topic doesn’t usually result in deal breakers, but it’s important to know how, if at all, you can support each other.
2. Do you see yourself with kids in the future?
If the topic of children hasn’t come up yet in your relationship and you’re considering marriage, don’t wait any longer to bring it up. Talk to your partner about whether or not you want children and if so, when and where you want to raise children. Then, see how your partner feels about those same things. If you both want children, it’s also critical that you consider when and what happens if you have trouble conceiving a child—will you need to freeze your eggs, save for IVF, or consider adoption? This is one of the harder conversations to have since it’s something you can’t necessarily plan for right away, but you’ll want to know sooner rather than later whether or not you both align.
3. In what ways do we need to receive and show each other love?
Relationships take work—like a lot of it. And if you plan on getting married, you’re committing to a lifetime of it, so you want to make sure you’re equipped with all the knowledge you need to have a successful marriage with your partner. This means that you need to know how to show them love in the ways that they need to receive it and vice versa. If you don’t know your partner’s love language (Words of Affirmation, Quality Time, Gifts, Physical Touch, Acts of Service, Shared Experiences, or Emotional Security), now is the time to dig into the topic together. Knowing how someone shows and receives love can make all the difference in your relationship and can help you understand and better support one another. For example, if your love language is Shared Experiences (one of the new ones!), communicate that to your partner. That way, when you are feeling down or disconnected from them, they know just what you need (a fun adventure together to bond over, for example). Having this figured out and practicing showing each other love in your own ways can strengthen your relationship way before you walk down the aisle.
4. What do you think the best way for us to handle disagreements is?
Similar to love languages and how people give and receive love in different ways, everyone has their own style of handling disagreements. Some people like to have some space to think before they react and decide how they are really feeling and some people like to hash everything out with their partner right then and there. Ask your partner what they need in the case of an argument and tell them what you need as well. This can help you work as a team instead of butting heads in the heat of an argument. Always remember this: It’s not about one person versus the other, it’s both of you versus the problem.
5. What is your expectation for how much time we spend with both sides of our families?
Ah, the in-law conversation. It has to happen sooner or later, and better before marriage than during, right? Whether you live close to your family or not, merging family schedules once you get married can become a full-time job if you’re not careful. To prevent this from happening, have an honest conversation with your partner about expectations, and more importantly, boundaries. Ask questions like the following: How often do you want to see your family? How should we split holidays? If we have family events on the same day, do we split up or pick one? How will we handle which one we pick? How can we build our own traditions instead of always divvying out holidays between our families’ houses? This is more of a loaded question and you might not have all the answers right away, but you need to start the conversation and know if you and your partner are able and willing to compromise before becoming a married couple.
6. Do you have any personal history that I should know about?
Ok, so you might know some things about your partner’s medical history or their general past, but are there any nitty-gritty details (whether the details signal a red flag or green flag) that they haven’t told you that would be nice to know before you legally join your life with theirs? It can be an awkward question to ask, but trust, you’re going to want to ask and give them the opportunity to share anything they might have been embarrassed, nervous, scared, or worried to tell you before. When you ask this question, make sure you communicate gently and state that you’re not accusing them of not telling you important details about their life, but you are just simply wondering if there is anything you need to know in a no-judgment zone.