5 Reasons To Stay Single

When marriage beckons, be prepared with a thoughtful response before agreeing to a tempting union that you may later regret. Here are 5 great reasons to stay single!

Getting married is often portrayed in rosy terms. A religious ceremony followed by an exciting reception can seem to be a wonderful start to the merging of two lives into one. But all too often the sad reality is that such unions don't last. It may be for a number of reasons, like the couple wasn't ready, one changed direction without the other, or they were besieged by unexpected circumstances.

If you are seriously thinking about tying the knot, here are some things to think about before saying "I do." Perhaps those wedding bells can wait a little longer, if not indefinitely.

1. You're not sure you love your intended. Naturally, you may get cold feet before the ceremony. Any smart person can be expected to draw back from the prospect of a life-long union with one person until one of you dies. Since no one can predict how things will turn out, you don't know how the next fifty years will work for you both as a couple. So you need everything in your corner, especially love. This is the kind of love that stays committed when one person's looks change, or new circumstances arise, or temptation beckons. You need to feel a strong attraction to and commitment for the person with whom you will share bed and board for the rest of your life. If you don't have it, don't get married.

2. You're not ready to stop playing the field. If you enjoy the company of many others as well as your betrothed, you're not ready to settle down with one person. While it can be fun to flirt or have a dating fling, these things need to be left at the door when the groom carries his bride over the threshold. In marriage, you can't have your cake and eat it too. If you try, someone, or maybe several people (including children) may get hurt.

3. Your finances aren't stable. If you are unemployed, partially employed, earn low income, or have few benefits, you may want to delay getting married. While money is not a good main reason to get married or wait, it certainly is a vital contributing factor. In fact, a majority of divorce lawyers claim that money and sex are the two main reasons for most divorces today. Get your finances in order by making and sticking with a budget. Then be sure your job is secure unless your intended agrees that you should be unemployed for a time, for example, as the person who will raise the children or care for the home, or perhaps consider returning to college.

4. You don't have similar outlooks. Everyone has differing opinions, of course. But if your significant other maintains strong opinions that are very different from yours, it may be a good idea to delay marriage. Work on your differences first and get married later. Otherwise, you may end up fighting all the time. Typical topics that cause problems are the aforementioned sex and money, as well as in-laws, child rearing, housework, and others. Politics and religion can cause major tussles, too. Decide if you can live with your mate's views for the rest of your life, and if not, don't get married just yet.

5. You can't agree on relationships with others. If you fight over how to discipline the children, when to exercise child visitation with past spouses, how to manage current in-law dilemmas, and whether either of you is flirting with co-workers, postpone the marriage and work on these issues. They are significant enough to warrant time before the wedding to sort through them.

Premarital counseling is a good idea for most if not all engaged couples. Some even schedule a few appointments before getting engaged to see if they can resolve problem areas or to ensure that they are likely to be compatible. Give your relationship time to mature before making a life-long commitment. Keep in mind the old saying, "Marry in haste, repent in leisure."

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