Marriage is a commitment that shouldn’t be taken lightly. It’s beautiful, for sure.
What could be purer than two people coming together and promising to stick by each other’s side through the good and the bad?
Yet, it is a commitment that most of us men are terrified to make. It sounds suffocating to us – the thought of being bound to another person for the rest of our lives is not too pleasant.
Yet, when we find the right person – the person who restores our faith in people, makes our hearts beat faster for no reason, and just feels right – most of us do not think twice before popping the question.
We suddenly think that we know everything there is to know to make a marriage work.
The proposal is, of course, a big part of the wedding but what most men need to realize is that there is a lot more to your marriage than just your wedding.
The realities of marriage come to light only once the haze of the honeymoon period wears off and you realize that you have, in fact, agreed to spend the rest of your life with someone else!
Since many people aren’t fully prepared for the reality of a marriage, it takes them by surprise and often times the end result is an unhappy marriage – or worse!
There are several things that you need to think about and discuss with your partner before deciding whether or not you are ready to get married. It takes a lot to make a marriage work.
If you do it right, it is indeed one of the most beautiful bonds that you will share with another person. But if you do it wrong, you might regret it for the rest of your life!
So hold up before getting down on one knee, here are six things that you should know before you get ready to tie the knot!
Table of Contents
There is No Such Thing as the Right Time
No matter what the movies and the books and your mom tell you, there is no specific ‘right’ time to get married.
If you are in your mid-twenties or thirties and still unmarried – do not freak out! You aren’t running out of time. It is not too late for you.
Landing the right job and being independent on your feet does not mean you need to get married.
Similarly, being in a steady relationship over the course of a couple of years does not mean that it is about time you guys get married.
Even if all of your friends have gotten engaged or are married, it is not the cue for you to pop the question.
The only right time is completely subjective and it varies from person to person. You shouldn’t ever get married just because you feel the pressure of time on your shoulders.
Trust us when we tell you that the ‘right’ time is simply a myth that is being fed to keep the wedding industry profitable!
Ignore societal pressure and marry only when you feel like you are ready to make the commitment and you are ready for this phase of your life.
If you get married before you’re ready, chances are that you will be unhappy and you will cause damage to what might have been a beautiful relationship otherwise.
Save yourself and your partner the heartache and wait until you are mature enough!
Your Relationship Will Change
No matter how prepared you think you are for marriage, you probably do not realize that the dynamics of your relationship will change quite significantly once you bring the marriage aspect to it.
You are now partners in every sense of the word – including the legal sense!
There will be added pressure and added responsibility that comes along with getting married. You are no longer living for yourself. You are living for your family.
Every decision you make impacts the two of you so you can no longer be reckless in your decision making. You need to be smart and you need to run everything by your partner first.
Some might view this as their independence being curbed but the feeling of having someone to depend on through the good and bad times – having someone to keep you grounded at all times – is indescribable!
You can believe that you know your partner better than they know themselves.
However, after you are married, you will realize that you have so much to learn – both about yourself and your partner. That is the reality of marriage.
It is an adventure that the two of you can take together. It is very easy to fall in love with different versions of your partner all over again.
You Will Fight – A Lot
As mentioned above, marriage is an adjustment due to which fighting with your significant other is almost unavoidable.
We do not mean malicious, ill-intentioned fights. Rather we are talking about those fights that occur naturally.
It is only natural for you to fight with your significant other over insignificant things.
This is because the two of you will be spending a lot of time together and will be in close proximity of each other for a large chunk of your time.
Spending that much time with each other is bound to raise tensions and cause irritability.
People need their space and if you cannot figure out a balance, the things that once charmed you about your partner will start to annoy you.
It is important to remember that you love each other and that your bond is stronger than arguments over taking out the trash and laundry duty.
It is okay to get annoyed at one another and frustrated with each other as long as both of you are respectful and willing to laugh about it ten minutes later.
A good sense of humor is exactly what helps make a marriage work!
Communication is Only Partly the Key
Part of the key to any relationship is good communication between the two parties. This holds even truer for marriage.
The foundation of any happy marriage is a good communication system where neither party feels neglected or overlooked.
Communication isn’t as simple as two people talking to one another. There needs to be a space present in the relationship for talking, self-reflection, and change.
It needs to be a two-way system where both parties feel respected, validated, and safe in all of the things they say.
Often times, we believe that we are open to communication but, in reality, we are only listening to retaliate.
Or we listen without bringing about any significant change in our behavior. This renders the act of listening useless in the first place.
Communication without understanding will get you nowhere and it will only result in circular arguments and pent up frustration.
Make sure that when either you or your partner is listening, it is with the intent to understand where the other person is coming from and there is a genuine change in both of your behaviors once the problem has been communicated.
If you want a happy marriage with your partner, you should make sure that both of you are open to communication and are ‘adult’ enough to handle situations in a mature manner.
You Need to Let Go of the Past – Forgiveness is Important!
Each and every one of us has a past and we have all done things that we are ashamed of. If you want a happy marriage, you should be able to let go of your partner’s past.
Whether it is something that they did before they met you or it’s a major fight that left you crying for weeks at a time.
Marrying someone means that you are ready to build a future together and if you are hoping to build a life with someone, there is no room to hold on to past grudges.
In a long term commitment such as marriage, your partner will hurt you several times – whether intentionally or unintentionally.
Highs and lows are a part of life and you can’t hold on to the lows of a relationship and still expect it to work.
Mistakes happen and, of course, people should be held accountable for those mistakes.
However, if there is a positive change and it is an issue that has already been resolved, it should be put to rest. Let go of the past, forgive your partner for any mistakes that they might have made and start fresh.
The future can take any shape that you want. Do not allow the past to color it the same way.
If you feel that there are some issues that simply cannot be resolved between you and your partner, they might not be the right person for you to marry.
It doesn’t matter how much you love them – which brings us to the next point.
Love Isn’t Always Enough
Despite what all the fairy tales and movies tell you, the reality of marriage is quite different.
Once you are married, you quickly realize that love is not the only thing that keeps a marriage afloat. You can love your partner more than the world itself but even then things can go wrong really fast.
Love isn’t always enough to make a marriage work because there is a dissonance of what is and what isn’t.
Should your partner give up an exciting job opportunity in another city because it will negatively impact your relationship? Should you cut ties with your family because they do not approve of the partner that you love so much?
Can the two of you survive financial hardships, loss of a loved one, missing out on opportunities?
What if you realize that your partner holds vastly different political views after your wedding? Is that something you will be able to look past for the rest of your life?
The most important factors when it comes to a healthy and happy marriage are commitment, effort, trust, and compromise.
We believe that trust is the foundation of any relationship and the other things mentioned follow naturally if there is this sort of trust present there.
If the trust is broken or fractured in any way, it can be impossible to repair. A relationship without trust is just two people staying together and doubting each other constantly.
You can love your partner more than life itself but if you cannot trust them, there is no point in staying with them.
This is why if you want a happy marriage you should always be honest with each other.
There should be space between the two of you where you can easily voice your concerns and come to your partner with anything that is happening in your life.
If there is a need to hide things from your partner, there is something wrong with your relationship.
What Do You Think?
All of the things mentioned above are a reality check and they are all things that you need to think long and hard about before deciding to get married.
Marriage requires constant effort if you want to make it work and keep it healthy. If done right, it’ll be the best decision you ever make!
Make sure that you are ready to take on this commitment, we wish you the very best in this chapter of your life!