So you have found that special person you want to spend the rest of your life with? Well, don’t take that leap just yet! Communication is vital to any relationship, and with a commitment as huge as marriage, you both had best be sure you are going into it hand in hand. Sitting down and having a few serious conversations can light your way to a happy future together, so here are a few questions that you and that special someone need to answer before tying the knot.
What are your finances like?
It is important to remember that you are tying your futures together, and your finances. One of the most important conversations you and your spouse-to-be can have is about money. Not only will it smoothen out the logistics of your relationship, but it will also let you look ahead into planning your future. Be open about both your current and prospective incomes, and be sure to share both your expectations for future spending. Lay out the big-ticket items in your relationship, such as accommodation or a child, and discuss insurance and retirement plans. Money can be a stumbling block for some couples, but with open and frank discussions, you can confidently pave the way forward .
For assistance in financial planning, how about attending a financial planning workshop together?
Do you want children?
Children are one of the greatest joys of marriage, but it is no question that they are a huge responsibility. Talk with your partner about your expectations for having kids, when you want them and how they should be brought up. Consider the costs of having a child and plan responsibly for what is best for both the child and you. Be sure to research the potential subsidies and benefits provided by the government, and look ahead into your child’s future and plan how best to support him or her through the years.
How do you feel about religion?
Is religion important to one of you and not the other? Or do you have different religions? Similarities can unite you, but big differences can divide you. Differing views impact your wedding ceremony, how your children are brought up, and even your day-to-day living, like how you pray, or whether to attend religious services and ceremonies.
Where do you want to live?
Where you will live is a critical discussion as it will decide the place you both will call home. Look at realistic accommodation options which will satisfy your needs while being affordable, and be open to suggestions and alternative options. Weigh your expectations and make an informed choice together. It would be wise to choose a home that you can afford, and not one where you maximise the bank loan, and remember to factor in the costs of renovation and furnishing your new nest.
All cards on the table
When it comes to your significant other, talking about each other is the most vital conversation you can have. You are about to link your lives together, so sit down and be intentionally open about yourselves and lay all your cards on the table. Open and honest conversation is by far the best way to strengthen your relationship and make it smooth down the road. So tell each other about your fears and doubts, what makes you happy and what you enjoy, so you both understand each other as best you can. This can be difficult or frightening, so be kind and slow down. Your marriage will thank you for it.
If you want additional help, consider a marriage programme to prepare you both for what is ahead.