Despite society’s jadedness towards it, marriage is a beautiful institution. Believe it or not, there are still marriages thriving off of loyalty, commitment and planning among other things. However, it is not easy and takes a lot of hard work. Here are some things to consider before marriage:

Every Couple Has to Find Their Balance

I went into my marriage thinking that I had to stick beside a man no matter what and go to all lengths to support him. This is a slippery slope because although it is good to be supportive in marriage, there has to be a balance. In my situation, I had to learn that even though I wanted to pitch in on bills, my husband ultimately loved to provide and wanted to do so. Any other financial contribution from me would be complementary. Figure out what arrangement works best between you and your partner so that you both feel supported and respected. No two situations are alike.

Sometimes Silence Speaks Volumes

Before getting married, I believed that you had to repeat, reiterate and stress things to assert yourself with your partner. After marriage, I understood that the relationship books I read had a point. You only need to say things once. If your partner wants to listen to you, they will otherwise let it go or do it yourself. Anything after that earns many of us the age-old “nag” title.

You Have To Ask

Unfortunately, no one is a mind reader. It is not reasonable to expect anyone to anticipate your needs. I learned this within the first few months of marriage. I realized that I had to be direct and just ask if I wanted or expected something.

It’s Okay To Be Firm With Them Sometimes

I went into marriage thinking that I had to be a subservient pushover. However, I learned that marriage is a partnership. For a partnership to work, two adults have to have open, direct and honest conversation. When in marriage, you don’t always have to agree with everything your partner says. Sometimes, it is okay to be firm and hold your opinions. Pick your battles.

Ricardo Esquivel

All Humans Are Emotional Beings

We are all emotional beings and we all express that need differently. Your partner may be a cryer, or may just shut down when feeling blue. Learn to recognize when your partner is feeling this way and ask them how they would like for you to be there for them during this time.

Innoh Khumbuza

Stop Comparing Your Relationship To Rom-Coms

When I was younger, I thought love and marriage were exactly like in the movies. I was wrong. Real life, and especially relationships, are not like the movies. We can however, create movie-like moments and get creative with date nights. But do not compare your relationship to fictional characters and made up story lines. Even the ones on Instagram or Youtube.

Do Not Play Mind Games

Before I got married, I used to play mind games. I thought my partner should know when I am not happy without me saying a word. I was wrong. If your partner asks you if you’re angry and you say “no,” when you really are, you cannot fault them for not pressing you about it. Be an adult and say how you feel. Always.

Andres Ayrton

Have Realistic Expectations

You may be able to do more than one activity at a time, and your partner may struggle to multitask. You may prefer to do physical labor and your partner may prefer the logistical aspects of running your household. Whatever the case, learn to have realistic expectations. Your partner is not going to change from day to night just because you are now married.

Junior Karrick DJIKOUNOU

Pleasing Is Easy When You Know Their Love Languages

Before marriage, I thought the only way to show my love was to do the most. With my husband, I realized that he is appreciative of even the smallest of gestures. Get to know what your partner likes. They may appreciate grandiose gestures or may prefer the little things more. What matter is that you understand how they like to show and how to receive love.

Hussein Altameemi: