Originally posted: February 18, 2010
16. Let the skeletons come out of the closet before the marriage (e.g. weird anal fetishes, possible illegitimate children, super bad credit). There is a such thing as a surprise and if your skeletons decide to make an appearance after “I Do” then it could ruin the marriage. All healthy relationships are based on trust and your partner should accept the good, bad and the ugly. Think of the “skeletons” as the emissions test. You need to make sure your relationship can “pass” before putting it on the road.
15. Know where you stand on children before the marriage (how many and the ETA). How many children are you going to have and when do you want to have them? You have to be able to come to some sort of consensus on this one. Especially if either of you already have children or one of you does not way any crumbsnatchers little darlings at all.
14. Decide early on how you are going to do holidays. Newlyweds are in high demand, and when two families come together this can create an issue. Are you going to split each holiday 50/50, Christmas with his, Thanksgiving with hers and alternate each year? Or are you going to do the easiest thing and create your own tradition and invite people over?
13. Live together BEFORE the marriage! I am going to get stoned for this one, and my Sunday School teachers are rolling over in their graves but you DO NOT know a person until you live with them. Merging lives is a challenging experience, and you need to discover the “quarks” before you say “I Do.” Perhaps your partner has superglued the toilet seat up and you are ALWAYS going to fall in. You don’t mind going to bed with dirty dishes in the sink, and your partner is borderline OCD. These are all details that are better worked out before the nuptials. I cannot begin to tell you the horror stories that I’ve heard of people who never lived together before they were married.
12. Set up your non-negotiables ahead of time. Flirting, phone calls, family time. What is the “norm?” What drives you up a wall? If you want everyone to have dinner together, establish that. If you want cell phones to be turned off after a certain time, establish that. The beautiful thing about marriage and about a relationship is that you create your own “handbook.” For some couples, dinner time is essential. For others, a daily check in via text works. It just depends, but you should have a discussion (or several) about it, and it is easier to do this if you live together.
Check out What I Know About Marriage: Part 3 here https://donnienicole.wordpress.com/2010/04/22/what-i-know-about-marriage-part-3/