Relationships are hard work especially once the initial butterflies fade away. For many who find themselves dating someone for a while, the question of marriage starts to bubble to the surface. Is he the one? How do you know if he’s the one?
To be completely honest, there is no way to be a hundred percent certain. As my granny would often say, “you only know a man once you’re stuck with him for the rest of your life.”
However, there are a variety of factors you should take into consideration before making your decision. Here are five things you can start with when trying to establish if you both have long-term compatibility.
1. VALUES ALIGN
“Having a conversation about values, such as family, spirituality, personal growth and health is crucial to make sure you and your significant other are on the same page for the long-term,”says Kara Lissy, LCSW and psychotherapist.
While you don’t need to agree on everything, there should be common ground when it comes to your values and beliefs. Things like how many kids, if any, you both want and what you expect from each other within the home form part of the core values that could make or break a marriage and should be openly discussed before marriage.
2. Conflict Resolution
Every relationship has arguments, fights, and conflicts. Red flags would be repeated arguments about the same thing, resentment, or contempt brewing behind the scenes.
“It’s a healthy sign that communication is intact and both counterparts are expressing their feelings appropriately,”explains Kara Lissy .
Marriages might be about more than simply physical relations but sexual attraction is still a very important aspect in the relationship. Thus, if you find that as time goes by, your interest in your partner has dwindled, carefully consider if you can reignite the flame or if the spark is truly gone.
The key is to be interested in each other long after the honeymoon phase has passed. For this to be possible, the attraction you feel needs to be much deeper than simply physical. Instead, focus on whether or not their thinking, mannerisms, and habits are attractive to you.
4. Mutual Respect
The ideal relationship is not codependence without autonomy but rather mutual and healthy independence. To achieve this, you both should have strong feelings of respect, support, and trust towards each other even if you are far apart.
“In any partnership, there should be mutual support and care-taking. A self-assured partner is confident with themselves and can take of their own emotional needs.”explained Lissy.
5. Financial Freedom
Aside from sex and compatibility, the next main stressor in marriage is money. It is important that you are both able to openly discuss finances and financial expectations in your relationship.
Maintaining a sense of financial freedom can help ease any anxiety you may have about the financial situation in your home. If you are truly nervous to broach the topic, consider turning to a pre-marital counselor to help solve any possible issues before they arise.