Wedding season is upon us! Many people find they go from wedding to wedding from late May to early September – and sometimes that can get people thinking about their own relationships.
Today, Relationship Experts on JustAnswer look at seven signs that suggest your relationship is ready to embark on marriage – and one sign that it may not be.
1) Actions Matching Words
Anyone can talk about love, but importantly, do they show it in the little everyday actions that make up a relationship? If not, it is unreasonable to expect that marriage will change the dynamic.
2) Do you make excuses for your partner?
For example, if your partner always fails to call when they are going to be late, even if you have asked them to, do you make excuses for this behaviour?
If the partner changes their habits, that shows their consideration for the other person. If they don’t, and you find yourself excusing them, that may not be a healthy basis for moving forward to marriage.
3) Hopes and Dreams
Are you comfortable discussing your life goals and dreams with each other in an open, honest way? If not, what is preventing you? You may need to work this through before embarking on marriage. You also need to know if your life goals are compatible. For example, if one partner wants children and the other doesn’t, that is not a good basis for a strong marriage.
4) Needs and Expectations
Does the relationship meet your core needs and expectations? Are you a good match on a personality, mental and sexual level? Your experiences while dating are likely to deepen and strengthen during marriage – so a good match may get even better, but an uneven one may end up with deeper fault-lines.
5) Personal Development
“I am what I am,” are good words to live by, but a relationship like marriage requires the ability to negotiate, compromise and potentially change. Have you seen evidence of this during the relationship?
6) Family and Friends
Does love conquer all? In reality, there will need to be a certain level of comfort with each other’s family and friend circles. Without this, over the years, hostility and resentment can grow and drive wedges between you. You don’t need to be best friends with each other’s families or friends, but you do need to get on.
7) Pressure or Desire?
Why do you want to get married? Is it because you want to – or because you feel pressured to by family, or social norms? Being pressured into marriage because of other people’s expectations is not likely to lay the correct foundations for a long-lasting, healthy future for both partners. And, both partners need to be on board. Pressure from a partner into marriage could lead to all kinds of resentment and grudges erupting later on.
And finally, the one that’s not a sign: the proposal
It may sound counter-intuitive, but a proposal does not necessarily signal readiness for marriage. A proposal can as easily come from an immature or dysfunctional person, or from a place of control or transaction, as from love and a healthy relationship.
Do you have questions about your own relationships? Are members of your family or friends in need of relationship help? Remember, Relationship Experts on JustAnswer can provide fast, individual help, 24/7. You don’t even have to leave your house. Ask your Relationship question now.