Marriage Prep 101
From the burning questions you should ask each other before you walk down the aisle, to the jitters and cold feet, here’s a crash course in building a marriage that can last a lifetime.
Life’s Big Questions continued...
If you dig your way through these issues with your betrothed and find you
don’t see eye-to-eye on everything, don’t panic -- disagreeing is not a recipe
“Sometimes there are differences that are sizeable in these area, and that’s
OK -- you don’t want to marry your clone,” says Weston. “You just have to
balance between how much you alter your life and how much your spouse alters
his or hers, or you just agree to disagree.”
Still, explains Weston, it’s important that your individual differences are
well understood, and ideally, those differences should come out of the closet
well before the down payment is made on a ring.
“People should know where the person they are dating stands on these topics
before there is a proposal,” says Weston. “While it doesn’t always happen that
way, knowing where you each stand on these issues before you even consider
marriage is ideal.”
But better late than never, explains Weston. Even for June brides who are
steps away from saying “I do,” getting through these issues now with their
husbands-to-be is far better than putting them off until after the
From Jitters to Cold Feet
You’ve made it through your pre-wedding discussion checklist, and it’s time
to move on to the menu and the floral selections. The problem is, you still
can’t shake a sinking feeling in the pit of your stomach and it’s not the
stuffed mushroom hors d'oeuvres you spent the afternoon sampling, it’s the
“Everyone experiences jitters to some degree,” says Allison Moir-Smith,
author of Emotionally Engaged: A Bride’s Guide to Surviving the “Happiest”
Time of Her Life. “You are going through a major shift in your identity,
and the jitters are a result of that.”
The jitters, explains Moir-Smith, can be a healthy part of your transition
into married life, helping you to look inside yourself and grow.
“It’s important for brides and grooms to know that the jitters are OK,”
Moir-Smith tells WebMD. “You know how to be single, or to be a son or a
daughter, and now the jitters are a way for you to self-evaluate and change as
you figure out how you are going to be as a husband or a wife.”
While the jitters are relatively normal, one step up on the ladder of
wedding anxiety are cold feet -- a phrase that sends chills down the spines of
pending brides and grooms everywhere. How do you tell the difference
between the jitters and cold feet?
“One sign is that you are really picking your fiancé apart and are
hypercritical of him or her all the time,” says Moir-Smith. “While you might
not be ready to call the wedding off, having cold feet means it’s time to do
some emotional work around getting married.”
Therapy and some serious one-on-one time with your spouse-to-be are both
smart choices; sifting through your thoughts and concerns is the only way to
make it to the altar in one piece. But if still doesn’t feel right, calling it
off can be the right decision, even if it’s last-minute.
“If you’re going to call off a wedding, the sooner the better,” says
Moir-Smith. “It’s far better to call off a wedding than get divorced, and while
it will be painful, everyone will be better off in the long run.”