Hey pals -
You know I love #RealTalk and getting beneath the surface. Well, today I’m encouraging you to dig a little deeper, take a good look in the mirror and GET REAL with your fiance.
We all know wedding planning is sooo stressful, and it can take a toll on our relationships with friends, bridesmaids, family, groomsmen, random great-aunts who want to do everything for you even though you haven’t seen them in ten years, etc. However, the relationship that is the most strained and sometimes placed on the back-burner is your relationship with your future spouse!
Sounds a bit backwards right? While preparing for a new life with someone we should want to lean on them, practice what life will be like when we’re officially married, support one another, and learn how to manage conflict.
However, I see time and time again brides and grooms waiting until after they’re married to discuss the tough stuff, the hard stuff, the REAL stuff, that will impact their marriage.
I 100% ENCOURAGE PREMARITAL COUNSELING FOR COUPLES.
It helps them keep their minds fresh and prepared for marriage. Counseling can help you learn things about your spouse you might have never known, it can teach you both how to practically approach conflict with each other. Best of all it allows you to have a trusted mentor who can share their wisdom and be a sounding board for later in your marriage journey.
Personally, I was very against premarital counseling when Jacob and I first got engaged. While our church required it for us, I was still very hard-hearted towards the idea of counseling. I didn’t want some strangers coming into MY life and tell me what to do and how to be “better”, I was perfect already! (I’m literally so embarrassed to even write that friends, but I truly thought that I was 100% gucci and didn’t need any help - talk about being prideful!)
Looking back, I was so dumb. I don’t know WHAT I was thinking because in hindsight, our premarital counseling was the best thing we did to prepare for our wedding day.
While yes, it sometimes felt like school because we had homework, podcasts to listen to, discussion questions and books to read, it was so refreshing to talk with a couple who had struggled with the same things we had, gave us practical ways to work together should we ever deal with miscarriages, losing a job, losing family members, or just struggle with loving each other well.
We talked about the hard stuff, the real stuff, the stuff that happens behind the instagram posts and closed doors.
We talked about pornography, sex, finances, our prayer life, our struggles with waiting to have sex until we were married. We talked about how we fight like cats and dogs and needed to learn to fight fairly. We talked about our roles in marriage and how those are challenged by society.
And most importantly we talked about how our faith rolls into all of this. We discussed how we would and will constantly fall short of the expectations of ourselves and of each other, but how we should still continue to fight for our marriage, fight for each other’s spiritual walks and fight to honor the one who gave us the gift of marriage in the first place.
So whether you’re a Christian or not, I hope that you can see the importance of asking the tough stuff ASAP. It’s much easier dealing with addictions and hurt right off the bat instead of hiding it under the carpet for twenty years.
Here’s my challenge for all women - no matter if you are freshly married, been married for 20 years, about to get engaged or currently riding out the last few days of your engagement: Talk to your fiance. Talk about the hard things. Bring them into light so they don’t have power over you or your relationship any longer.
You might think, “That’s cool Kara, but like what actually do I talk about? I don’t know where to even start or how to bring anything up!”
Well, here are 11 REAL questions to ask your future spouse - and as for how to bring it up, you can just say that a crazy-blogger-lady told you to do this. And remember, we’re planning for a marriage more beautiful than our wedding day, so let’s get to it!