Before you get married you need to make sure you are marrying the right person, lest you spend the rest of your life “mourning.” But this is not always the case, as most people these days “just” get married without even critically considering the person they are marrying.
Such couples, including newly weds, find themselves seeking legal redress, as if the marriage was on a contract basis.
While “contract” marriages exist, they are not yet popular in our African setting. In fact it is only in Africa where the statement “till death does us apart” still holds water.
It doesn’t put the fact that a good number of couples in Africa decide to stay together “for the sake of their children and avoid being referred to as “social outcasts” after divorce.
But while it is difficult to determine whether you will stay with someone for the rest of your life, taking time to choose the right person can help.
“Before I got married I had dated dozens of men! It was such a difficult decision for me to decide which one to marry because they all appeared to be serious,” Lillian, who has been married for 9 months, recently told me.
She went to say “But eventually I realised one of them was outstanding. He is mature, hardworking and trustworthy.”
Mature, hardworking and trustworthy is what Lillian was looking for and she found them in Aggrey. Lillian and Aggrey are now happily married and expecting their first born.
From Lillian’s experience, one realises that it takes more than love when choosing somebody to marry.
This is because it takes more than love to make a successful marriage. So choose your spouse carefully.
“How do I know if I’m marrying the right person?”
Finding Mr. Right is not always an easy thing to do. Once you think you have found the right person, you may have doubts.
Having doubts about who you are marrying is not only normal, having doubts is healthy.
Hopefully you already know that you should not marry someone who drinks too much, is lavish, works too much, brags too much, uses drugs or is in other illegal behaviour, or is unfaithful, cruel, or dishonest.
If your future spouse is free of those destructive behaviour and you are still having doubts about getting married, read through these statements.
You will see if your doubts are reasonable and worth paying attention to or if you are having cold feet about getting married without having any rational reasons.
Happiness and emotional support
Although expecting a spouse to make you feel happy all the time is unreasonable, being with the right person can bring happiness and a sense of personal strength to your life.
You will know you are marrying the right person when you feel support and encouragement about your own growth both emotionally and intellectually.
The right person will want you to be emotionally healthy and able to stand on your own two feet. When you are with the right person you will feel good about yourself, safe, and fulfilled.
Affection, Love, and Sex
It is important that the person you marry is someone who is understanding and agreeable to your wants and needs when it comes to sex and affection.
You will know you are marrying the right person if your future spouse says “I love you” not only in words spoken, but by loving actions.
We define loving actions as doing things such as noticing when you are tired, remembering your birthday, wanting to spend time with you, listening to you, showing you respect, calling if they are running late, showing you affection, being patient with you if you do not understand something, kissing you hello and goodbye, and hugging you for no special reason.
The right person is someone who you like and who is your friend. The right person will enjoy spending time with you.
Your love and your marriage will slowly fade if the two of you are not friends. And remember the magic rule – NEVER RUSH INTO MARRIAGE!