Dedicated, with my very best wishes, to all the lasses and lads around me that decided to take “the big step”. You are that which may yet save this society.
Getting married!? You don’t know what you’re signing up for
And that’s just fine. Life is full of twists and turns, you’ve heard this all before. Don’t behave like it’s different now. When you commit to “for better or for worse” you essentially have no idea just how good or bad this can become. So don’t just say the words and hope for the best. This superficial social pressure driven behavior is a candidate for the biggest mistake you’ll ever make.
Establish purpose for your marriage, by paying special attention to the wows
I dislike the modern-day ceremony of marriage, in a moderate and tolerable amount. And the part I dislike the most is the fact that for this immensely important contract of your life you are being forced into signing a “standard procedure” paper, with the matching words to speak. Words that you don’t even say yourself, you just drop of an “I do”. Because every man and woman getting married is exactly the same and gets married for the exact same reason, right!? Right!? Bullwinkle! This contract will make or break anything you associate with happiness in your life. Take it seriously and make it personal, early on.
But fear not, I won’t advise you to rebel against social norms. Play the part, if you don’t mind it, it apparently helps everyone else deal with the situation better.
But I do advise you to have your own private “ceremony” on the side. It only takes you two and whoever else you want to witness your TRUE marriage. My advice is to take the words you speak to each-other, the “vows”, very seriously. And in these vows speak of the purpose of your union, of the vision you have for 5 – 10 – 25 – 50 years down the road. Speak your wishes and ask for confirmation that you will receive his/her participation. Be romantic, why not!? But for your sake, be crystal clear! Make this moment count and set expectations as best you can.
People power trough a LOT as long as they have purpose. Start your marriage with answering the “why?” behind your union. Be honest.
Acknowledge who exactly you are marrying
You probably have some experience together (if not, go get it and then come back to the marriage thing). Sit back for a minute and recall your best times together and your worst. Now focus on that worst and imagine you are marrying that person, the worst he/she ever was around you. For all my limited experience in this field, that’s really who you are mostly getting.
Trust me, over a few decades of marriage, one thing is certain – you both will change. And this change will have its pains. Being in a marriage, bringing on some children perhaps, is a lot of pressure when combined with your own revelation of the fact that you are not who you remember you were. And this will likely happen to both of you more or less at once (being a process that includes multiple lasting phases). Ouch!
There are many meanings for “the worse” in “for better and for worse”. Maybe it’s poverty, maybe its disease, maybe war or hunger. Maybe none of those. However I can promise you that you will certainly and consistently be the witness of your significant other’s “worse” personality side. If you can’t meet that with a kind and loving heart, don’t get married.
Marry the one who you will enjoy fixing your marriage with. Cause I don’t care who you are and how perfect you are in the sight of God, after a few years that becomes your one goal. Think otherwise and the realization might just hit you too late, when the gap is too wide. Work on it early and constantly and it brings the satisfaction of a job well done. When you get married you’re not ready for what’s to come. You simply sign up for the experience of becoming ready. Acknowledge entropy.
So yeah, recall what it was like when it was the worse. If you can work with that, if you look forward to addressing “the worse” together, you’re making the right choice.
Work together before you commit
Professionally or as volunteers for a cause you like, spend time together working. Like REALLY working, the kind that brings the stress of delivering value. The kind that has clear measures of success and failure. Try to experience both. The more ambitious the goal, the larger the stress, the better you will know who you’re working with. And unless I’ve already made it very clear, know this: marriage is work; for your sake – get in bed with a professional!
I have more to share but it seems to me like 3 thoughts are enough for now. If you just need more advice, below are links I stumbled upon (including 9gag wisdom). Or you may just challenge me to a conversation.
May you grow together into happy and prosper family!
So, what do you think about it!?