Mawwaige. That bwessed awwangement. It can be a scary thing, especially if you’ve been burned before; but when it comes to commitment to your partner, it is one of the greatest expressions of dedication. It takes more than love, and it takes more than just finishing each others sandwiches. How can you tell if it’s time? What are the signs to look for?
You Accept Them As They Are
There is no such thing as a perfect person. Even the best among us have deep, dark secrets; and your partner is no exception. Marriage means choosing a specific set of problems, and accepting your partner as they are. Because you are two different people with two different backgrounds, some of your personality traits will occasionally clash.
If you know your partner’s baggage, and you can still see yourself with them; you might just be closer to ready than you thought. Every little insecurity, background detail, and character flaw combines to make them who they are; so if you can accept all of it, then your relationship is primed for deep commitment.
You Don’t Want Anyone Else
This is sort of a given in a monogamous relationship; you’re ready to get married when the thought of being with another person is not attractive to you. You see your partner warts and all, and you slowly start to filter out the noise of other potential partners.
This is not to say that you won’t still find other people attractive; but the thoughts change. Where you used to give every pretty person a second (or third) glance; now even the most attractive stranger blends into the scenery a bit. When you have a solid and healthy relationship, you don’t need to consider the possibility of someone else taking their place.
You Share Space Well
One detail that often gets overlooked when a couple is committing is that you will be sharing your space for the foreseeable future. It’s sort of important that you are able to share it with minimal disruption.
Disruption will happen, of course; it’s unavoidable. Getting two people in the same room for long enough will wear down even the most patient of people. Sharing space is not just about being able to be in the same room though. It’s about setting and respecting each other’s boundaries. Work on that, and you’re well on your way to sharing a happy life together!
You Enjoy the Mundane Together
It is really easy to get swept up in the notion that true love means “happily ever after.” It doesn’t. In the movies and romantic arcs of our favorite stories, there is a build-up to the declaration of love, and a steamy affair. In the real world, you have to wash the dishes, clean the toilet, and wipe down the dining table.
(Not in that order, and certainly not with the same rag.)
If you find yourself at peace with doing those things for your partner, you don’t need a grand gesture to show that you’re ready to take the next step; you’ve already shown that you’re ready to join together.
You See the Future
Relationships can make or break a person, and the difference is often in how well you see yourself together down the road. Having a clear picture requires that you know your partners dreams, as well as your own.
When you can work with your partner to achieve both of your life dreams, and create a life together with purpose, then you have a road map toward a happy, healthy, joyful, and connected marriage!
These five guidelines are by no means exhaustive; so much more goes into building a marriage that will stand the test of time. At the end of the day, you’re ready to get married when you’re ready to get married. To that end, I have an announcement to make: I am officially engaged! And you’d better believe that each of these five guidelines (and enough to fill a dozen more articles) informed my decision!
What are some of the ways that you came to the realization that it was time to take the next step? Leave a comment, and share this post with anyone you think might appreciate it! Play on!