So you’re getting married? Twelve things to do before you say ‘I do’
Congratulations! You’re getting married.The butterflies in your tummy have an absolute right to be there; you’re taking one of the most important and exciting steps in your life. There’s a lot that comes with planning a wedding, and even much more that comes with planning a marriage. I thought I could help with a few simple tips:
1. Be sure:
Marriage doesn’t change people. It amplifies who they really are and makes it more obvious. A break up is not an easy thing, but divorce is even worse. I’m not saying you should leave your beloved hanging at the last minute, but what I am saying is: if that person never changes, can you have a happy home with him or her?
2. Marriage counselling
No matter who you are or where you’re from, you need marriage counselling that is bible based. Even if you do get counselling, there are still somethings that will happen that will keep you scratching your head. How much more if you don’t. Marriage counselling will ensure that you and your spouse are on the same page when it comes to values and expectations. It could also connect you with the right person or people you’ll need counsel from in marriage. All marriages are different. So even though there are lessons you can learn from your counsellor’s marriage, you don’t have to insist on doing things their way. What you must insist on however is doing things the way the word of God says you must.
3. Sex education
If there is something you should ask your married friends, it should be in this direction. Although a basic knowledge of ‘it’ works is always a good idea, lovemaking in marriage requires understanding your partner and putting his or her needs first. You can’t learn all you need to in this post, but there’s a lot of good Christian material on the topic, and like I said earlier you can ask your married friends. Even if you do have experience, remember that sex is different for each couple. So in marriage, put your partner’s needs before yours, communicate with each other, be patient, faithful and enjoy yourselves.
4. Health check
I know quite a number of couples who both have AS genotypes that gone on to have children that do not have SS genotypes. Sadly however, the reverse is sometimes the case. Whether or not such couples choose to go on to marry each other is their choice. However, it must be an informed choice. Both parties must be aware of what they are getting into and make their decisions based on such available facts. For instance, there is branch of In Vitro Fertlization, IVF which focuses on Pre-Implantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD), wherein the embryos would be screened, and only those free of the SS genotype would be transferred. This means that such couples can decide not to have children by natural means, but choose this option instead. It is said to be pretty expensive. But if you both can save up for it, it could prove to be worth it in the long run.
Health checks are important. HIV positive people also get married all the time. With the right counselling and treatment, they go on to have healthy marriages and children. What is paramount here is to respect your spouse’s right to know before marriage, so that you both can make informed decision moving forward.
5. Extended family
Before our wedding, the church that was to wed my husband and I insisted that we present letters of consent from parents on both sides to show that they were in support of the marriage. There’s a saying in this part of the world that you don’t just marry someone, but their families as well. Ensure that you know and love the family you’re marrying into. Learn to accept your beloved’s family. There can however be some really extreme cases where you have to seriously consider whether or not the relationship is worth the hassle of a long term feud between you and your in-laws. Another very important point is your spouse-to-be’s relationship with your own family. I never advise people to marry people that their family isn’t comfortable with especially if your folks are the reasonable type and they have genuine reasons for their reservations. Do your best to convince them otherwise, but try your best not to alienate your family just to please your beloved.
6. Legal framework
Marriage is a legal contract as well. Be sure you follow the legal processes of your state or country. Here in Nigeria, you can either do a court wedding or obtain a marriage license which you’ll then take to an accredited church that will grant you the certificate. Don’t forget to keep it safe. Especially as it is the only certificate you get on the day of matriculation. Lol.
7. Living conditions
It doesn’t have to be Banana island, but one of the things you must consider before getting married is conducive place to stay. Cut your cloth according to your size, but bear in mind the need for privacy, a safe environment to raise a family and proximity to the work place. Do you best to ensure that your apartment has a private toilet/bathroom, kitchen, a room for visitors and a private ‘other room’
This one is a whole other post altogether which is coming soon right here on www.lajuiren.com. Just focus on doing the best with what you have and getting your priorities right as a couple.
9. The job thing
It’s important that a man has a regular means of income before considering marriage. But in this economy, I think it’s important that the woman has something going on as well.
10. Honeymoon runs
So what if you can’t afford the Burj Khalifa? It doesn’t mean that you and your spouse can’t have a good time during your honeymoon. Take as much time off work as you need. The important thing is that you both have alone time to get to know each other without any distractions.
Spend a lot of time in prayer. Study books, ask questions and learn habits that could help you become a better husband or wife.
12. Secrets, Secrets
If there is something really important you need to tell your beloved, before the wedding would be a good time to do so.