A couple of weeks ago, I had a conversation with one of my young mentees who was sharing some of her frustrations with me. She had been dating her boyfriend for several years and was upset because, although she felt she was ready to get married, he wasn’t. Mind you, he had given her a promise ring and had already stated that he intended to marry her—when he had his life in order. And knowing this young man personally, I knew he was working toward doing just that.
So when I asked my girl why she was so anxious to get married, her answer was along the lines of, “I’m tired of living at home and just think it’s time for us to be together.”
“So what makes you think you’re ready for marriage?” To which she wasn’t sure what to say. Instead she shrugged her shoulders and was at a loss for words.
Her response made me realize how misinformed and disillusioned many of us are when we embark on probably the most serious commitment we’ll ever make in our lives. If any of the following apply to you, then maybe you should reconsider your reasons for getting married.
1. You want to escape your current environment. Many of us have grown up in homes that were less than ideal. In our attempt to get away from uncomfortable, and even, painful situations, we look at our mates as a lifeline. If there’s one thing I’ve learned, the pain you think you’re escaping will only find its way into your relationship if you don’t take the time to deal with it.
2. You are looking for someone to complete you. Then you’ll be happy. If you’re not content with where you are in life and complete and whole before you get married, you’re setting yourself up for failure. When you look for someone else to fill the hole only God can, you’re expecting the impossible and inviting the inevitable. The person you’re looking to complete you will never meet up to your expectations, through no fault of their own.
3. You want to do it to please your parents. So often, as children, we seek our parents’ approval of the choices we make: whether it’s the clothes we wear, our hairstyle, school of choice, or friends. It only makes sense that we would do the same for the man or woman we intend to spend the rest of our lives with. However, although it’s ideal for your future spouse to be compatible with your family, it shouldn’t be the only reason you decide to marry this person. After all, it’s you, not your parents, who will have to wake up next to them every morning.
When you finally make the decision to commit your life to the person you are meant to spend the rest of your life with, make sure it’s because you’ve prayed about it and have taken the time to do the work on yourself so that you’re coming into the relationship whole, healed and happy.
To learn how to how to get to being whole, healed and happy, check out my upcoming book, co-authored with my sister, Christine St. Vil, “Whose Shoes Are You Wearing? 12 Steps to Uncovering the Woman You Really Want to Be.” Now available for pre-order on Amazon!