Getting married is a big leap in life. It means that from the moment you say “I do,” you and your partner will be building a new life not as separate individuals, but as a united pair. Life isn’t only about you anymore. Rather it’s about you and the other person who will stand by you for the rest of your lifetime. With this union comes the reality of making big decisions together. These decisions will greatly impact how your life unfolds.
To make your transition into married life easier, you can align your life goals and expectations early on. This will aide all the decision-making that will come later on. If you’re on the same page as your spouse, you will have less misunderstandings when important choices need to be made.
In this feature, we have identified four topics that you should talk about in detail before you even begin day one as a married couple. Start sorting out how you want to navigate life together by discussing these as early as now.
(1) Finances and Budget
Money talk can easily cause arguments and misunderstandings. What if you’re extra thrifty while your spouse-to-be is a big spender, how will you compromise? When you’re still single, you can decide on how you want to spend your money, but when you get married, you need to agree on something that works for both of you. Here are some questions you can ask yourselves to find common ground about your money.
- If you’re both earning, will you put all your money in one pot and use that for all your living expenses, joint and personal? Or will you agree on how much you will contribute to common fund for joint living expenses and keep some money for personal expenses?
- What will be your monthly budget and will you allow leeway to going over the budget? If yes, by how much?
- Who will manage the entire budget?
- What is the budget breakdown per item?
(2) Raising Family
If you’re planning to have kids, you’ll need to align on how you want to raise your kids and build or family. From what school you want them to attend to your disciplining style, all these little details matter because they will define the kind of human beings your children will become. Some things worth talking about in relation to this topic are:
- What values do you want to instill in your children?
- How do you plan to discipline them and who will talk action, you, your spouse, or both at any given time?
- What school or learning style do you want to for your children–aside from a school’s academic strength, consider values formation as well?
- Do you want to encourage sports, arts, and other extra-curricular activities?
- Are you open to sending your children abroad for college?
Are both of you working? When you get married, you will have new priorities, more so when you have children. The responsibilities and needs of taking care of a household and raising children, usually put stress on your careers–your family needs your time. Long before this happens, it will be good to ask yourselves:
- Who will take a less demanding job to allot more time for family needs?
- Are you both open to hiring extra help if you still want to continue with your careers?
- Would you consider getting help from your in-laws when it comes to taking care of the kids?
(4) Responsibilities at Home
This might seem trivial, but just like the first three topics, talking about responsibilities at home and agreeing on them will make daily living a smooth-sailing ride. Why If you think about it, if you set your roles, you’re both fully aware of your responsibilities and commit to them from the very beginning. You can talk about these and go even deeper into each one. The more detailed, the better!
- Who will do the chores?
- Who will pay the bills?
- Who will handle the upkeep of the house and contact services needed for leaking pipes, furniture or fixtures that need maintenance, etc.?
- Who is in-charge of the cooking?
After discussing all these, we hope you feel confident and more than ready for married life. Note though that your initial agreements are not set in stone. In time, you might need to go over these topics again and adjust according to how you’ve grown as a couple. Returning to these topics time to time is a good way to keep your goals and values aligned throughout the years.