The foundation for a good marriage is good communication. While certain conversations can be tough, they’re also very important to have so that you can set up those lines of communication. Below are four of the discussion topics you should cover before you get married.
Money problems are among the leading causes of divorce, so it’s good to have conversations about how you’ll handle the finances before you get married. You need to put your cards on the table about your financial goals, the debt that you currently have, and any major monetary plans for the future. This will allow you to go into your marriage on an equal financial footing with your spouse and it should also allow you to avoid financial surprises early in your marriage.
It’s vital that you talk about your stance on children before you get married. Unlike so many other aspects of marriage, there’s really no compromise here—you either want children or you do not. Talk to your partner about where you stand on children, as well as what your timeline might be for growing a family. You also need to talk about things like your feelings on fertility treatments and the possibility of adoption. If you don’t have the conversation soon, you might be stuck at an impasse later on in life.
In what do you believe the most strongly? You might think that you can live and let live with your spouse, but there might be certain beliefs that one or the other of you just cannot budge on. These can range from your diet to your religion to your thoughts on politics, but it’s important to know where you stand early on. These issues can make up a huge part of your personality and they can also be the root cause of a significant amount of relationship friction. It’s better to know where you stand now than to wait until things get unbearable.
Finally, you should talk about how you will handle problems in your relationship. No matter how good you think things are, there will be conflict at some point. You need to talk about who you will go to for relationship advice, your feelings on things like marital counseling, and how you best deal with conflict. Setting a firm foundation for problem-solving early on can help you to weather some of your relationship’s worst storms.
It’s always a good idea to discuss the big issues before you get married. The more honest you are early on, the better your foundation for a future. Take some time to have these conversations now so that you can be prepared for what comes next.