Marriage is a serious lifelong binding commitment. Although these days technology plus liberalism has found a delicious way to give people a way out, ergo -Divorce.
History has it that people used to marry for economic reasons, to settle family or community disputes by having one member of the warring faction get hitched to another member of an opposing faction and voila!- problem solved. Everyone sheaths their sword and slaps a smile on. Although now that I just typed it…I realized that Sex is actually what was used to fix the problems. You can’t be fighting with someone you’re doing between the sheets acrobatics with nau.
But I digress. Now back to our topic. These days marriage is done for love. And that’s where the problem comes in, people don’t think so smart when they are in love. And now that is where we come in. We’ve made a list to help keep you on track, to help you fix the mistake before you even make it, here’s what you should make sure you agree on before you say “I DO”:
How many kids do you want? What’s your stance on adoption? Birth control plan. Or do you even want kids? And if no are you willing to take permanent measures to ensure you don’t? If yes, what happens if you can’t conceive naturally? How long will you both keep trying to conceive before exploring other options? Will you go with fertility treatments or will your husband expand your monogamous marriage agreement to accommodate a legitimate mistress or second wife so she can have kids by him? Ask yourselves and have arm yourself with the answers before tying the eternal knot.
2. Where will you live?
This problem gets more confounding when the people involved are two independent home owners. If you both live in different states, it gets even harder. Who will do the relocating? Which area will you both live in? Whose house will the ‘marriage’ live in? Although you can sell both your houses and buy a new neutral one. Or would you live on a tree? That’s allowed. And even when the location is settled, what kind of house do you want? A self-contained apartment? A two bedroom flat? A bungalow to yourselves? A duplex? A mansion? A face-me-i-face-you apartment? A hut?
Atheism, agnostics, freethinking, not-going-to-church-because-you-are-tired-ism, they are all a thing. The question is- will you be ok if your partner is on another page with religion? And even if you’re both people of religion, if you both attend different churches or denominations, whose church/denomination will the family you are both about to make subscribe to?
This is actually number one. Find out how much money you both are worth, will you both split bills? Will you operate separate accounts or a joint account? Will you both keep separate accounts aside the joint account? What will you spend money on? That’s of course aside the usual basic necessities of food, water, shelter, and kids if you have any.
How expensive will your lifestyle be? Will you go to the village for Christmas or will you rather book a flight to Paris? Do you want normal average 5K shoes? Or actual Jimmy Choo’s? Will you buy normal shirts and skirts or actual Fendi’s and Gucci’s? You get the picture abi? And if anyone of you already has outstanding debts, how’s it going to get paid?
Will anyone be quitting their jobs? Is he the kind of man that wants his wife to be a house wife? Are you the kind of woman that wants to be a housewife or you love to have something doing? And if no one is quitting any job how about how demanding your individual careers are and whether or not it will adversely affect the marriage? If it will, talk about it and develop a convenient strategy it work it out. Will you hire a maid, or a cook or a nanny?
6. Family Name
Thanks to social media, it has come to light that this is a real issue with couples and for most it’s even a deal breaker. So do well to talk about it before strutting down the aisle and singing “I do”. Here’s what to talk about by the way; will the wife be taking the name of her husband? If no, whose name will the kids bear? If yes, then there’s no issue at hand.
7. Extended Family
How will you deal with extended family matters? If a family member was solely dependent on you and living with you while you were single, what will happen when you get married? Will you still be able to afford to take care of them or accommodate them? Will any sibling, parent, cousin, uncle or aunt be coming to live with you? Will you take your issues to the extended family to settle? How much power will they have in your marriage?
No matter how awkward or inappropriate you think these conversations are, you need to have them and get them out of the way once and for all. Be sure you are both on the same page, because you and this person are stuck together forever. That’s an infinitely long period of time.