Uniquely You

Before you were Mr. such and such half of a great couple, or before you were Mrs. such and such the other half of a great couple, you were uniquely you. When you were uniquely you, you were able to navigate through life independently making your own decisions (some good, some bad) but they were yours. Before you were married, you had friends, activities, hobbies, career aspirations etc. Before you were married you cared about how you dressed and the condition of your body. Well, marriage doesn’t change or shouldn’t change any of that. Yes, you may not be able to remain friends with some people because their values may not prove to be respectful of a newly married individual. This is understandable that some things will change because you have a new relationship to nurture and grow. It is important to remember that the better you are at taking care of yourself the better spouse and parent you will become.

One of the most unattractive characteristics of an individual is when they have completely lost their identify because they have become engrossed in their new relationship. This is detrimental because it will cause a severing of past relationships that may have taken a life time to build. It will also cause you to not make yourself a priority. When you are a priority then you have a full complete life with your spouse, friends, and activities. Do not fall victim to losing all the qualities that attracted your mate to you. For instance, if you were a critical thinker and independent, do not become so dependent that you cannot not make simple decisions for yourself (this is very unattractive). If you were full of life and energy, do not become a couch potato who has gained weight and lacks energy to the point where you cannot even complete basic household chores. If you were creative and cheerful, nurture that spark so that your mate continues to adore and love your vitality. In other words continue to be uniquely you, all the things that attracted your mate and others to you; remain full of life, cheer, joy, creativity, and intellect.

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Marrying A Whole Person

Do you consider yourself a whole person that is ready for marriage? Your future spouse deserves to marry a whole person. You may wonder what does a whole person look like. Well, a whole person is one who has taken the time to develop fully as an adult, a person who has taken his or her personal inventory and has made the decision to heal from past hurts and leave all past baggage behind. A whole person has created healthy boundaries with their families (specifically their parents) so that they are prepared to enter an adult relationship without interference from friends and family. A whole person has experienced living self-sufficiently and understands the importance of financial responsibility, and having time alone to mature and experience life as an adult.

You may not be a “WHOLE PERSON” IF:

  1. You consult your parents first when you have personal problems
  2. You allow your parents to financially support you
  3. You allow your parents to manipulate you
  4. You do not express your thoughts and feelings toward others
  5. You put your family before your partner
  6. You live at home because you are afraid to explore the world as an adult
  7. You continue to reside in selfishness, thinking only of self
  8. You do not know how to problem solve
  9. You cannot think critically
  10. You haven’t not experienced and handled life’s challenges successfully

I’m engaged, but changed my mind!

Before marriage some doubts may be normal, because you are making a decision that will affect the rest of your life. However, how do you differentiate between normal and true doubts. How long should you allow doubts to persist before you take the feelings seriously?

Well, it depends on what the doubts are concerning, if you are having doubts about whether you want to be married or the character of your soon to be spouse, then you might want to take the time to explore those issues. If you are doubting the choice of cake or the brides maids dresses then you don’t have much to worry about. If you are wondering why you mate choose you, because you feel blessed to have your spouse to be, but wonder if you are good enough, this may also be normal, but in small doses. Don’t spend too much time wondering or it will become an issue.

If you are having doubts about being a good spouse, or how you will perform sexually on your wedding night, then just know these are normal doubts. This is a happy time that will bring about some nervous energy, after all, hopefully this will be your one and only marriage, and you will undoubtedly wonder if you are making the right decision.

Some doubts are normal!

Wife Material

What does it take to become an awesome wife? Are you wife material? How would you know if you were wife material? There was a time when women were value laden, feminine, and walked with respect and confidence. Sometimes this is not so in today’s society. There was a time when a wife was the lady that you married, lived with, had sex with, and built a life together. There was a time when being a wife was reserved for respectable women. In today’s world of free sex, children out of wedlock, shacking up etc. marriage does not always create a place of sanctity. So, who is wife material?

A woman is wife material if:

1. She refuses to shack up

2. She refuses to have sex or children out of wedlock

3. She desires to have a family and keep a home

4. She is mature and intelligent/educated

5. She understands the role of a wife

6. She has standards

7. She has values that are aligned with God

8. She respects marriage

9. She exudes class (appropriate dress, proper speech, respects her body, is not flirtatious etc)

10. She is not desperate

11. She is nurturing and caring

12. She understands a husbands role

Finally, if she has fallen short of any of the above, she learns from her mistakes. For example, she may have had one baby out of wedlock, but does not continue that behavior, she repents and turns her behavior around. Remember, no one is perfect, even I have made many of the mistakes above, but with the help of God I have turned things around, I am now proud to be wife material.

Arranged Marriage

There was a time when marriages were arranged (still happens in some places) for various reasons. But finding a mate is difficult and an important task. If a marriage was going to be arranged, who should be in charge of creating the arrangement? Should parents, friends, or a professional match maker be responsible for finding our mate? Well, ideally, we should have a spiritual connection with God, and he would be in charge of sending us a loving, kind, and God-fearing mate. 

What happens when we choose our mate without God’s help or blessing? How many times have we chosen the wrong mate, because we were so impatient and or desperate that we could not wait for God. Maybe we were lonely and envious because those around us seem to find mates but we could not. If you choose your mate without consulting God what system are you using to choose? Do you have a plan in place to make sure that you are choosing a quality mate, or do you say yes to whoever comes by with an offer?

The Role Of Problem Solving

One skill that is very helpful for individuals and newlywed couples is the ability to problem solve. Problem Solving is useful throughout all aspects of life, individuals as well as couples need to master this very important skill. Problem solving should be developed before marriage because marriage will present many obstacles and need the skill of problem solving. When couples have arguments, are deciding whether or not to have children, or when they decide to purchase a house; problem solving skills will be in high demand.

Individual problem solving skills before marriage are important, these skills can be used to solve dating conflict, deciding what career path to take, and when is the appropriate time to start or stop dating. Problem solving skills are lifelong assets that will be of constant use. When a couple marries and they do not have problem solving skills the marriage can become a source of stress as conflict will ensue and breed negativity between the couple. 

Adequate problem solving skills should include the following: maturing in the area of thinking, the ability to work as a team, and the ability to see both sides of every problem or opinion. A free thinking mature individual should be able to problem solve individually and with their spouse. Individual problem solving shows a sign of autonomy and maturity.

The Notion Of Marital Happiness

The notion of marital happiness consist of the belief that because one marries, that one will be happy. The idea that all problems will magically disappear, and that the new spouse will be responsible for all happiness and joy throughout the marriage is not true. This type of notion has ruined many marriages over the years. This marriage notion is basically faulty thinking. The reason that it is faulty thinking is that the responsibility for individual happiness is placed upon somebody else’s shoulders. This is not realistic and is very unfair. It is also faulty thinking because it encourages individuals to reside in laziness, sitting back and waiting for some extraordinary event to take place as opposed to taking personal responsibility.

We shouldn’t marry simply to be happy, happiness comes from inside and a true relationship with God. Happiness is ongoing and should be obtained prior to marriage. Marriage like anything else requires hard work and dedication to a common goal. It is important for married couples to understand that happiness is a choice, and that no one person is happy all the time, but we can choose to work towards happiness everyday.