Divorce Proof Your Marriage
By Susan Derry
Of course there are never any absolute guarantees, but there are things that you can do even before saying “I do.” that will greatly reduce your risk of ending up divorced. You can with a little bit of time and attention, save your marriage before it begins.
A wise man once said the best way to avoid divorce was to avoid marrying the kind of person you would want to divorce. Planning for marriage should be just as important as planning for your wedding day. Take time to get to know each other, to discuss values, beliefs, choices and important decisions that may end up being deal breakers in the future. Those things that in the end make people decide, I just can't live like this anymore.
Your wedding hopefully will be a wonderful day that you will treasure for the rest of your life. Your marriage on the other hand could last you a lifetime if you are prepared and committed to creating a marriage worth savoring.
The best time to prepare for marriage is months before you marry. Ideally you will both be open and willing to learn about your relationship and interested in building on what works to strengthen that relationship. Taking time to form good habits and healthy ways of relating early in your relationship will mean far less heartache and frustration later on.
Unfortunately many choose to ignore the early frustrations and incompatibilities, thinking that because they love each other those things won't matter. Over the years these annoyances accumulate until one day there is that final straw that breaks the relationship.
The very best time to pay attention to incompatibilities is before getting married. It is important to discuss how your life together is going to look, feel and be. Tackle important topics like finance, children, religion, careers, extended family, separate interests, sex, and housekeeping. If you share your expectation with each other, you will have an ideal opportunity to clear up potential disappointments and frustrations before they occur.
If there are major areas or values in your life upon which you cannot agree, these are not going to disappear just because you get married. It is far better to work these out before getting married. That way you can discover the deal breakers before making the deal.
I am not suggesting that you go into marriage preparation looking for reasons to break up. For the vast majority of couples this would not be necessary. This is a perfect time to learn about each other, to explore your expectations of marriage and of each other. Great disappointments in marriage can be avoided when expectations are communicated and understood. There are very few unfixable concerns if you approach them with the attitude of, “let's work this out together and find a way that this can work for both of us.”
A marriage preparation course, when approached with an open and committed attitude, can start you on a path toward a satisfying and fulfilling marriage.