I’ve been married only a few months now, yet looking back at our engagement, there are so many things I wish I had taken the time to learn. Whether or not you and your partner are already engaged, here are the three most important lessons I learned (or rather wish I had learned) during my husband and I’s engagement period that I recommend for all couples.
How to Live Independently
Luckily, despite our young age, my husband and I have both spent our fair share of time living away from home, both traveling and living with a handful of roommates. We had both learned how to do laundry, clean up after ourselves, pay bills, and manage our money.
That said, there’s still plenty that we both are always learning and needing to figure out. Sadly, there’s no handbook to handle all things “life”, and many things you learn simply by doing.
My advice to younger couples especially who are about to wed is to aim to have some time living away from home before you transition to living together in marriage. It may not prepare you for everything, but getting used to taking care of yourself and living with others is a huge asset and will help you both have some solid ground to stand on.
How To Handle Marriage Advice and Opinions
Many couples can testify that being engaged brings a lot of unsolicited marriage advice and opinions!
Some may be kind encouragements and wise pieces of advice that will strengthen you. Others may be judgmental comments or negative remarks on marriage as a whole. Be prepared for both. Everyone has their own experience and view on relationships and marriage, and chances are it won’t always match yours.
While you want to be prepared for all that marriage holds, even the hard stuff, you need to remember that marriage is ultimately good, and that your engagement is worth celebrating. Don’t allow others to tell you that as soon as you’re married your relationship will take a dive and that romance will soon go out the window.
Take each piece you receive to the Lord, ask for it to fall on deaf ears if it’s harmful and not helpful. Consider how the people who give you such advice treat their own spouse, or what their relationship with God looks like. This will definitely help you sift things through.
To Prioritize Counseling
Pre-marital counseling is beneficial for engaged couples, especially if you’re drowning in the pieces of advice I mentioned before.
Seeking out pre-marital counseling with an unbiased, wise couple will be an excellent asset to you and your spouse-to-be. If anything, I suggest doing so before you even set a wedding date, because you may have more work ahead of you. The last thing you need is a ticking clock to properly prepare yourself for marriage. Give yourself time to search your hearts.
It is easy to let the details of the wedding and honeymoon consume your engagement when perhaps the most important part of the engagement period is not wedding planning but preparing yourself for marriage.
Prioritize counseling, read marriage books together, and continue to experience quality time with each other despite the stress and chaos you may be feeling.
While this little list may just be scratching the surface of all the lessons marriage and engagement will hold, I hope it serves as a simple guide for you to come back to.
I would love to hear about the things you’ve learned since becoming engaged or married in the comments below!
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