Whether it is a love marriage or an arranged one, you have to remember that you are going to share the rest of your life with this person. Given the fast-paced lives that we live, where unfortunately, the attitude has become that of experimentation, you need to understand the institution of marriage. Ask yourself “What does marriage mean to me?” In a country like ours, marriage is given an extremely high status, something we believe defines who we are.
What you need to remember is that at the end of the day, it is us, the individuals who define the marriage. No one can guarantee what happens once you take the plunge. But there are a few things you can do and be aware of as you walk down this road.
Change is inevitable – Understanding and accepting there is going to be a change in your life – Not just a change in residential address or the people you live with, but a change in priorities, a change in lifestyle, a change in your spending and saving habits, maybe even a change in perspective. To be ready for it and plan for it, makes it easier.
Respect the differences – Remember that you are different from your spouse and vice versa – Different identities, different personalities. It is because of the similarities and differences that you have chosen to get married to this person.
Communicate – Remember to communicate with your spouse, simply because they cannot read your mind. You need to tell them what you want and be open to listen to their side of the story as well.
No clash of egos – There would be times when you have to be ready to meet midway. Remember it is not about who’s right, but what is right for the situation. Don’t make it a battle of egos.
Plan for your future – Discuss about your future plans once in a while. How do you see yourselves in 5 to 10 years down the line, especially as an unit.
Have faith – There are going to be ups and downs. Be ready for it. Don’t throw the towel in at the first sign of distress. Ride it out with your partner.
Be open to changes – Let that be learning a new skill or a shift in paradigm. Personal growth will contribute to the growth of the unit.
Have your own friends – Once you get married, it doesn’t mean you totally cut off from your former life. You need to have your own set of friends to hang out with as well as your own hobbies and interests to pursue. Your spouse is a very integral part of your life but not the only part of your life. It is not necessary that you do everything together with your spouse.
Pre-marital counselling – It helps in a big way to prepare for married life. It facilitates healthy discussions about expectations from each other and of each other, dealing with fears and notions, discussing the future and the past together with a counsellor.
Most importantly, nothing beats the preparation of a married life with your decision and mind set – that you are ready to marry or as it is generally referred to – settling down.First Published: Nov 24, 2011 at 6:53 PM