I have been wondering for some time whether it is necessary to commit in a relationship and/or a marriage. I want to know if there is a guideline that could help us to think through before saying “I do,” as well as to determine whether we are on the right relationship.
I googled “what adults should know before committing in a relationship” and it gave me bunch of lists, but only a few that caught my attention. Two articles are from the Huffington Post and one article is from the Frisky. I found common topics as I read these articles. The first one is to know more about your boy/girlfriend. There should be no fake behaviors between you and your boy/girlfriend. This is because you will live under the same roof and share things.
The second one is to have a clear communication. No guessing, such as, “he should have known to give me a flower bouquet on my birthday.” Practicing I statement is crucial whether you are in the relationship or in the married life. For example, it is recommended to say, “I don’t like when you yell at me in front of my co-workers” instead of remaining silent but then holding a grudge.
The third topic is to know your boy/girlfriend’s life goals. If his/her life goals or perspectives are different from yours, and you think that will cause a trouble in the future, you may want to think twice whether you should continue the relationship. One example that I hear often is about religion/faith. For instance, the guy is Catholic and the lady is Buddhist. The lady has no intention to convert her religion. The guy, on the other hand, is wishing to raise kids in the Catholic family. This kind of topic needs to be addressed earlier on in the relationship, not a few weeks before the big day. Another example is relocation. The couple works and lives in two different towns. The guy likes his job and the town. The lady likes her job, too and she does not want to move. Unless one of them is sincerely willing to relocate, this couple may need to discuss about their relationship status.
One thing that strikes me most after reading these three articles is that you need to know how your boy/girlfriend behave around his/her family. As James Lingerfelt pointed out in his article, “9 questions to ask before committing in a relationship,” you may want to observe and/or get to know more about his/her family. He brings good point here because one’s personalities are often shaped by his/her years of interaction with their family members. If your family emphasizes the use of formal-polite language when speaking with the elderly, but then you see that your boy/girlfriend often speaks harsh to his/her parent, you may want to address this behavior because he/she will be part of your family members, too.
Basically there is no need to rush to commit in a relationship and/or a marriage. I understand that sometimes we feel pressured because our friends are engaged or are getting married, or perhaps family urges us to find a husband or wife. However, you also need to think that you will be the one who will experience it, and so it is crucial to choose your spouse wisely. I hope this article will help you to decide your next step.