Preparing for weddings is a lot of work. First you have to make the invitations, choose your bridesmaids, and plan for the reception. Then you have to decide which flowers to get, what food to serve, what dress to wear, and who to invite. All these will definitely eat up a lot of your time and energy. Don’t get me wrong. All these are necessary plans to ensure that nothing goes wrong on the day of the wedding. However, couples could get so preoccupied planning for the event that they forget what really matters. You see, preparing for your wedding is one thing, but, preparing for marriage is a whole other story. It requires some work, too!
Many couples think that they have it all figured out from the sound of her confident yes during the proposal. If I have not known better, I would totally say that being in love with each other is all you need to be ready for this big of day commitment. However, I met a lot of newlyweds who did not take marriage preparation as seriously as they did their wedding plans. What happened to them? They were slapped hard by the reality that marriage is no game. It was already too late when they realized that it is something a couple should prepare for.
As a concerned friend, I wanted to impart some things I have learned about marriage so you would not have to struggle as hard as the others during their first few months of marriage. Here are five things you should do to prepare for your marriage.
1. Better yourself as an individual
Marriage is when two people decide to become one. This simply means that the two of you have decided to live your life together, share everything in joint ownership, and be each other’s better half. And what kind of partnership would it be if one of you can’t even manage his or her own self well? Before even thinking about getting married, contemplate on your issues and try to work them out. If you notice that you tend to be irrational when it comes to arguments, maybe it’s because you’re not mature enough to take on confrontations. Destroy your bad habits. Invest time in taking care of yourself. A great individual who has it all together makes a great husband or wife.
2. Learn life skills
Getting married means that at some point, you will have to move in together with your partner in your own place and get by standing on your own feet. That is why learning how to do certain skills is very practical. Prepare for your marriage by learning how to cook. You can always order Chinese food or eat out but that does not sound like a good food budget plan. Besides, nothing is more romantic than sharing a home-cooked meal with your spouse. For starters, you can try and learn how to make each other’s favorite dish. Ask for cooking tips from mom or get that secret family recipe from dad. Learn a dish or two or go as far as taking some cooking classes. Your call!
You should also prepare for marriage by starting to practice doing household chores. If you’re the type of person who was raised to take care of his or her own stuff at home, then good for you. Otherwise, you must learn how to wash the dishes, do the laundry, and operate the vacuum cleaner. It may seem easy in your head but all these tasks might overwhelm you if you make the mistake of underestimating them. Marriage is not all about spending all your free time cuddling and watching movies together. It’s also about doing chores and running errands. You got to do your part of the work and you got to do it right.
3. Pre-marriage counseling/ Marriage classes
For many couples, sitting down for counseling or taking classes (yes, it’s a thing) help them be more prepared for marriage and all the challenges that could come after the wedding. Talking to expert marriage counselors can give you insights on matters like money management and conflict resolution. A reliable and unbiased mediator will make you understand each other’s expectations and desires. It is a great way to communicate your thoughts about children, sex, and divorce. Going through these processes will provide enlightenment in the complicated and often vague dynamics of marriage.
Marriage classes provide helpful tips on how to achieve success in relationships. However, attending these does not guarantee that you will have a long and happy marriage. At the end of the day, making a marriage work is always going to be up to what you and your partner give for the relationship – the effort, time, patience, and love.
A marriage would not survive in love and love alone. You also have to make ends meet. To be prepared for marriage, the two of you must be financially secured. Before popping the question even, you got to assess how much you earn and figure if it would suffice for your needs as a married couple. Make sure that your monthly paycheck and savings could pay not only for the wedding but also the daily expenses after you’ve settled in together. Preparing for marriage also means that you have to learn how to handle your finances. You don’t get to keep your money for yourself alone, not anymore. You have to pay your dues, pay your share of the bills, buy groceries from your pocket. Never ever expect your partner to carry all the costs. I you are not ready for this way of life, then you are not ready for marriage.
These are just some things you have to do to prepare for marriage. It seems like you got so much work to do but it’s not going to be that hard if you do it together with your partner. Be each other’s inspiration to grow and to be ready for the life ahead of you. May this serve as a helpful guide for all the lovely couples who are to be wedded soon. I hope you have an easy transition from the dating stage to the married stage of your relationship. Wishing you good luck and all the best in life!