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This is one of those articles with hard truths. We believe you have to have the courage to look deep inside and question your motives, only then will you realise true happiness and truly immerse yourself with not just wanting to walk down the aisle because you are of a certain age or because society dictates it; but because you couldn't imagine your life with anyone else but him or her.
Here are a few thought provoking things to consider:
1. Wedding Day Unicorns
Spoiler alert: if the idea of wearing a gorgeous white dress, having a rock on your finger and throwing a big wedding excites you since your childhood dream and this takes over wanting to spend the rest of your life with your significant other, then you’re not ready. Have you thought about the days after the wedding? Weddings are easy, it is the marriage that takes work.
If you’ve ever seriously thought that your partner is just better than having no one, or that you don’t think you’ll find anyone better so you might as well settle, you’re not ready. If you think having the comfort of the person you have is better than starting from scratch again, it’s time to think long and hard on why?
3. More than one
Some friendly flirting is no cause for concern however if it’s to the point where you are feeling guilty and worried about your partner finding out, then you may not be as committed to your significant other as you think and you are not ready for the plunge of forever with one person.
If you feel you cannot trust your partner completely to hold your interests and feelings above their own and also trust yourself with them, you’re not ready.
5. Communication Style
If you feel you cannot communicate with your partner about your thoughts, feelings, or important matters, if you can’t fight fairly and find some common ground in disputes or if you leave every time there is a disagreement, you’re not ready.
6. My Soul
Have you spent enough time with you, yourself and you to know what you truly enjoy and desire or have you moved from one crippling relationship to another, “the walking stick” a term used when a person dates and rebounds never leaving alone time in between. If you do not know yourself independently of a relationship, you’re not ready.
If you haven’t met each other’s families and gotten to know and got comfortable with them and your partner’s relationship with them and what influence they could have on your marriage, you’re not ready.
8. Best Friend
When you reminisce about your favourite memories, does your partner come up like your best friend would? If you rather look forward to timeouts from your partner, you’re not ready.
9. Little Nigglies
If the little things they do annoy you to the point of absolute irritation and makes you revolted, you’re not ready. There are tough times in any marriage and if you can’t look past the little things, how are you going to deal with the big things?
10. The Top 5
If you have not had deep meaningful discussions and found some commonalities on the following key areas in a marriage, you’re not ready.
Religion, Beliefs and Practices:
Are you the same religion?
How do your beliefs influence how you live your lives for example family planning, holidays, and participation in a spiritual community?
Do you share the same beliefs, or have you discussed what compromises will be made for those that differ?
Do you want children?
Who’s going to take care of them, and in which ways?
What religion will they follow?
What is the state of finances for both of you?
Do you both earn similarly or is there a great disparity causing one to depend on the other?
Do you want to have joint or separate accounts?
Will one person be in charge of finances or will both participate equally?
Do you agree on important values that you consider significant?
How to raise children (if any) with these values?
Can you communicate your desires, fantasies and dislikes?
Are you able to find compromise in the bedroom?
Do you believe in monogamy or in alternative practices, such as open relationships?
There is clearly a lot to think about and not a decision to be taken lightly. If you are not ready, that’s okay, divorce rates in South Africa are well over 50%. If you are not 100% sure you want to spend forever with someone, wait for the one that makes you feel that way.