10 Questions You'd Better Ask Before Getting Married. Or Else.

There are so many questions you need to be asking your significant other before setting out to tie the knot. Really, it’s not something we can’t cover in a neat little list right now. Unfortunately, there are also a number of reasons (best discussed another time) why you don’t ask these questions.

So, in the spirit of avoiding major “obstacles” in the course of marriage; and to aid you in your quest of achieving off-scale, Disney movie levels of happiness, we’re going to alert you to 10, just 10, extremely critical issues we think you need to address. Here they are, laid out in the form of questions to ask your wife or husband-to-be:

1. Do you want to have children? How many? And how will we raise them?

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There are a lot of tangential questions to the three above. When should we have kids, if we do want them? It’s going to be a lot of responsibility, who’s going to put their career on hold, you or me? How important is faith going to be in their upbringing – and what faith do we instill in them (if the two of you come from different ones).

2. What was your family like? Will the life I led before I met you be a problem?

If your SO’s family was not one to discuss things calmly over dinner, resorting to squabbling or even more “physical” altercations, then you need to know. Research consistently points to us being affected by our familial upbringing – not a huge stretch to make. However, this is a tricky topic, and you, the person asking those questions, certainly aren’t your family’s essence compressed into one body – you’re your own person with unique sensibilities and personality. Conflict resolution, however, among various other things, is still influenced by what we’ve seen growing up, and conflict resolution, among others, will be an important issue in the days to come – to make the understatement of the century.

Also, what about exes. Will there be retrospective guilt? Jealousy? What if you’ve been with 10 partners, and your SO with one before lucking out with you? What if their past love life was fulfilling and rewarding, and yours not so much? The trick is to have these conversations with a singular goal in mind – not judgment, but to avoid conflict in the future. Your SO lived a life before they met you, whether you can handle that or not isn’t something to be left to chance.

3. How do we work the finances?

You and your partner may have different plans if you come into a lot of money – it’s best to discuss those before hand. That doesn’t significantly increase the chances of your winning the lottery, but it does work to show each other the priorities. Things like debt, insolvency, self-sufficiency and budgeting are major points. And so is how to decide to make major purchases – that one may want more that the other, for example.

4. Will you be alright with my doing things without you?

There are shades of gray here, because what privacy means to one person isn’t quite what it means to another. Dens with quiet time spent in favorite chairs, time spent with friends and pursuing hobbies are some of the areas to discuss. Sometimes, you may not be interested in sharing friends or hobbies with you SO (and vice versa), and you need to know if that’s going to be an issue. How much time are you allowed to dedicate to your “me” time? Etc. And so forth.

5. Can you handle my parents? And what if not?

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Notice the only time that “wicked” in-laws seem to be a problem is when your partner seems to be oblivious, dismissive or unsupportive with regards to the goings-on.

6. What about sex?

How much do we want, how do we like it, and what do we expect from it? Oh, and how do we reach a workable compromise? Yes, the words “workable compromise” aren’t the most appealing when it comes this most carnal of pleasures, but don’t let that deceive you. It’s going to be pretty hard to just “wing it” post marriage.

7. What are the boundaries we’d like to set with other people?

For some people, their partners’ flirting is a-okay, but for others, it’s a giant slap in the face and requires an immediate assessment of the status quo. For some others still, their partner not showing jealousy at being left alone or seemingly “replaced” in a particular social context is unacceptable. These things aren’t worth guessing or wishing away, so sit down and hash it out.

8. Can we communicate our love?

Okay, so communicate here means showing love – people do it and notice it in different ways. You want him to wash the car; he brings flowers. You wanted a kiss; she’s happy to pack your bag and then wave from the door. Noone’s wrong here, or so claims Gary Chapman. We think he’s right, so look him up and learn to communicate love.

9. How should we argue?

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How to argue is a pretty important point. Some close-up; others keep talking till the other is beaten into submission. Also, going to bed angry, yay or nay? Is taking some time off to cool down the right thing to do and if so, who gets the couch?

10. Why are we doing this?

What do we hope to achieve, when we’re older, and hopefully, wiser? Do we see ourselves growing old together, for better or for worse, or is this marriage for life, come what may? And how do we hope to live, say 10 years from now?

Answering these questions can also help the couple power through difficult periods, that will (just like the good times), as sure as your name, surface.

If you think we left out something big, let us know. There’s a comments section below that just loves when you hit that submit button. As do we.

Images Source: Shutterstock, Istock

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