If you and your significant other are seriously considering marriage, it may be time to discuss that area of your life where you struggle most. Even the most successful business man and the most “put together” woman you will ever meet have something imperfect about their lives. Do you struggle with laziness, anger, or jealousy? Do you find yourself on a constant quest for money? Is there a temptation you constantly face that brings you back time and again to the feet of Jesus for forgiveness and restoration?
One thing to note: if you are not sure that you want to marry your boyfriend or girlfriend, don’t have this talk yet. You need to know that you can fully trust him or her with this area of your life.
We often share our struggles with close friends, family, or church family, but due to the nature of relationships after a break up, it is wise to keep certain topics on the down low until you are confident that your dating relationship is moving toward marriage. Not that every ex-boyfriend or ex-girlfriend would do this, but some exes would share your sensitive information with others as a way of hurting you should your relationship ever go south. So save the deep parts of your heart for the love of your life and don’t spread it to casual friends or dates.
It can be hard to discuss your struggles with the man or woman you want to marry. After all, you don’t want to turn him or her off. You don’t want to scare your loved one away. Still, if this wonderful person is going to spend his or her life with you, you need to be up front about the parts of your life that are not so great.
Maybe you are not sure you even know the area(s) of your life where you struggle the most. We tend to hide from unpleasant truths about ourselves. Now’s an excellent time to do some prayerful soul searching. Is there an anger problem that occasionally rears its ugly head? Do you have an ongoing problem with pornography? Are you battling a physical or psychological illness? Before deciding to get married, it is important that you and your potential fiancé/fiancée know exactly what you are bringing to the table – the good, the bad, and the ugly.
This probably won’t be the funniest or most pleasurable talk of your relationship, but here’s the good news: you are not alone. When you look at yourself in the mirror and think “everyone else has it so together; no one else is struggling with this problem,” you can be sure that at least a dozen people within walking distance are struggling with the same issue(s). We all need Jesus – we are all broken vessels until the Potter restores us.
Listen to each other just as you would want him or her to listen to you. Be supportive and be honest about your questions or concerns. Be prepared to forgive, if necessary. If it is an area with which you are uncomfortable continuing the relationship based on the information received during this talk, you may suggest a relationship pause until counseling is received or until the situation is under control (depending on what the struggle is and the severity of it). In some situations, it may even be best to part ways; yet, don’t do so in a dramatic way or in a manner that will bring more hurt or shame to the other person than is necessary.
We wish you all the best as you prepare to discuss potentially uncomfortable topics with your future fiancé/fiancée. You may find that he or she is even more amazing after you show your battle scars.
Have you and your boyfriend/girlfriend discussed your deep struggles with each other? Do you believe it is the right time to have that talk?