It’s no secret that marriage is a big and life-changing event. Whether you have been living with your spouse-to-be for years or your wedding night is the very first night you will share a bed, marriage will undoubtedly have a huge effect on your relationship. But, exactly how will your life be different after the ceremony is over?
1. You Will Manage Your Money Differently
First and foremost, the way that you organize your finances will most likely be completely different than before you were married. Because you are legally bound to another person, you have to think about money in a completely new way. Life as an “us” means that both of you are contributing to your lives together in some way. Of course, this doesn’t mean that you have to forfeit your bank account and let your husband manage all of the money, but from now on, your purchases and your livelihoods are entwined.
What this means is that your debts are now your spouse’s debts, and your financial successes are now your spouse’s financial successes (and vice versa). There are many ways to determine how to manage your finances as a married couple, but the most important thing is that you keep communication open and honest and don’t do anything that you already know would make the other spouse uncomfortable.
2. You Will Argue Differently From Before
Though clearly marriages aren’t immune from breakups, they cannot simply be undone by a passing mood or silly argument. Before you get married it is a little easier to walk away after a particularly bad scuffle, but marriage means sticking it out and talking it out. It is inevitable that you are going to argue because co-habitating with someone can be difficult, but the trick is to figure out how to argue fairly and accomplish something with each tiff. With some luck and a lot of patience, you should be able to learn from each fight about what makes each other irritated and be a better partner by adjusting accordingly.
3. You Will Think About Family Differently
No matter what kind of family you came from, your notion of family will be different once you get married. Not only will you get a new set of parents, and maybe even siblings, aunts, uncles, and cousins, but also you and your spouse have now become your own family unit. You will have to learn how to make yourself comfortable with your in-laws and learn about their family traditions and holidays, and the same goes for your spouse. You may also find that getting married also means that the dynamic between you and your parents has shifted a bit as well. Though it’s definitely still OK to seek advice out from your parents and your in-laws, you will naturally want to go to each other for advice and counsel on finances, work decisions, etc. Getting adjusted to new family members and a new way of life can be intimidating, but focusing on all the good of your new life together can make these transitions easier.
4. You Will Discuss the Future More Candidly
When you are dating it’s often considered a faux pas to make plans about the future so that you don’t scare your partner away with too much mention of commitment. When you get married, this of course all changes the minute you get engaged. Being able to freely discuss your future plans, dreams and goals is one of the best parts of being married. There’s no more guesswork on who is going to be buying a house with you or who will be with you in the hospital room when and if you decide to have children. You can discuss the future without fear of judgment or that your partner will go running toward the hills.
5. You Will See Your Spouse in Every Single Way
When you are dating someone (especially in the beginning), it’s common to only see them when they are the “best” version of themselves, which is ready for date night or a weekend of hanging out and relaxing with you. When you live together, you will not only see your spouse at their most fun and silly times, but you will also see them when they are anxious, angry, and maybe even depressed. Living a life together isn’t always going to be filled with fun times, and part of marriage is helping each other get through every type of problem and helping them solve it. Learning to be with someone when they are unpleasant is one of the hallmarks of a strong relationship.
6. Others Will View Your Relationship in a New Light
Getting married will not only change how you see your spouse and your relationship, but it will also change the way others view you. Family and friends will see you as a more defined unit once you get married. Believe it or not, you may even inspire others with your commitment to one another. Good marriages are always hopeful and create a sense of stability and love in a family, which is always a good thing.
7. You will measure time differently.
Thinking back to when you were dating, you might have found yourself counting the number of dates you went on or the number of months you had been together. You may have been constantly asking yourself where it was headed or asking how you felt about your partner. Once you make a commitment to forever with someone it seems as though time starts to speed up, and the months very quickly turn into years. Even though you are committed to someone and know who you will be waking up to for the next 50 years, it’s still fun to celebrate the little moments. Take the time to celebrate the anniversary of the first time you kissed or the first time you went to a movie together. Just because you aren’t dating doesn’t mean you can’t date your spouse.