Relationship: Advice: When To Get Married

Advice on the right time in your relationship to get married.

If you have been in a romantic relationship for any amount of time, it is likely that marriage has crossed your mind. You may have even discussed it with your partner. But how do people know when they are individually ready for marriage and when a relationship is ready to become permanent with a trip to the altar?

Individual readiness

Regardless of the relationship a person is in, he or she needs to be personally ready before even considering marriage. While many people suggest that someone may be too "young" to get married, readiness is more a function of maturity than chronological age. Certainly, it is wise to reach the age of adulthood before settling down. But, more importantly ensure you have reached some of your personal goals. For example, it is far easier to finish one's education before getting married. If you have a dream of traveling the world, career hopping or other solitary goals, you may want to accomplish them before tying the knot. Remember that once you are married, your goals must work for a twosome. You should also be ready for independence from your parents. One thing to think about is whether you are you able to support yourself -- and your partner if necessary?

Keep in mind that weddings and marriage are not the same thing. A wedding is a really fun party, and it lasts one day. A marriage should last a lifetime. If what you really want is the party, plan a great bash for your next birthday; you'll get presents and none of the angst.

Making the move to commitment

When people first date, they generally focus on whether they enjoy spending time with the other person. As the relationship evolves, friendship often turns into love and thoughts may turn to the possibility of marriage. But, how do you know whether this is the one and if so whether you are both ready?

First, make sure that love you feel is true. Love is an important foundation of marriage and you should not get married if you are not feeling it. In addition, do you still feel the friendship that you started out with? When something good happens, consider whom you want to call to share your glee. If it is your partner, that is a good start. If it is someone else, think about why it is not your partner.

Then, spend a little time thinking about your partner and the values you each hold. Have you discussed your opinions on religion, children, politics, morals and finance? Did those discussions go smoothly or do you have a lot of unresolved issues between you? If you have core values on which you disagree, it does not mean you are ill-suited to one another. However, it does mean you need to discuss some issues and resolve them before you decide to get married. Do not assume that marriage will make any problems go away; usually, it makes any existing problems grow.

While there is no set amount of time two people should be together before getting married, it is important to get to know each other well. You should be familiar not only with the one you love, but his or her family, friends and bad habits before you make this important decision..

Finally, think about your partner. Imagine yourself married to them. Do you feel an overwhelming sense of happiness or are you worried? If your head is sure, does your heart agree too? While there may always be some doubts in your mind, since humans cannot help analyzing their options, overall you should feel comfortable and happy with your decision. Anything else is a sign you may not be ready.

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