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Relationship Health Message Board

Relationship Health Board Index

Hi Tru521,
I am so glad that you popped in on this thread. Although I am not the one that started it, I have had alot of input into it and have followed it since the predecessor thread, "A call from an ex.". I'm sure Boxgirl will be thrilled to see that she has helped you as well as join in.
I personally think it is wonderful that you as a single person have been following this thread. I understand that you have been in a long term committed relationship and are wondering what is normal to expect. This is the IDEAL time for you to learn what is real love as well as making sure you pick the right person for you. If only everyone had gained this knowledge when they were single before they said I do.
I have not finished reading the book, "Truth About Love" but I would recommend that you purchase it. You can order it used (looks like new prety much when it comes) over a famous internet book site that I am not allowed to mention on this site. I think you will be able to figure out which one it is. You can also buy it at a bookstore. I think the more wisdom you can gain before walking down the isle with someone, the better your chances are in having a successful marriage.
I had a 6 year relationship with my high school/college sweetheart that ended about 6 months after I graduated from college. I never expereinced the feelings of passion fading for him, but I am sure that was due to the fact that after high school we both went away to different colleges. He wound up going to a college several states away and we only saw each other every few months for the most part. (Sometimes more often if he had the money to fly me in to see him or fly out to see me.) Plus, during our courtship, we broke up several times, so in some level it was new, fresh and exciting when we did get back together again.
I have been married to someone else for 19 years but have gone through many struggles. Things are much better now, I just wish I had realized before I married all the things that can influence the success of a relationship.
I think there are many different things you need to look at regarding your relationship with your boyfriend since you are single and contemplating marriage in the future:
1) Do you feel that you have a healthy, give and take relationship?
2) Does he strive to meet your needs and make you happy? (I'm assuming that you do this as well)
3) Do you feel that he brings more joy and happiness by having him in your life than if you did not have hime there?
4) Are you happy when you are with him?
5) What things about the relationship or him bother you? (This is a very important thing to look at to ascertain the health of a relationship.)
6) How do you settle disagreements?
7) Do you both have similar goals in life?
8) Is your upbringing similar? Do you come from similar backrounds including socio-economic backrounds?
9) How do you both handle money?
10) Are you both responsible as far as being steadily employed?
11) Does your family like him?
12) Do you still have outside interests and see your family and friends seperate from him?
13) Do you both still go out to fun places regularly?
14)Do you share a similar faith?
15)Are his parents still together?
16)Are your parents still together?
17)If your parents and/0r his parents are together, do they have happy marriages?
18)How were BOTH your childhoods? (This is a very important question as well.)
19) Do you both want children? How many? How soon? Have you discussed whether you will go back to work after you have children, or are you both in agreement that one of you will stay home to care for them? Can you live on one salary???? (This is vital in being able to ascertain if it is your deisre to stay home when you have children if you realistically can.) Many, many couples wind up in very stressful, chaotic lives when they have children and both spouses are working. If that is what they want to do and can make it work without taking a serious toll on their relationship, that is fine. However what often happens is that people wind up buying a house based on two people's incomes, (A home much larger than they necessarily need), have car loans, debt,etc, and lifestyles that they can not afford on one person's income. Or, the other thing to think about is if the man that you marry makes a good salary so that if you have children and if you want to stay home to raise them, you can. It may seem ridiculous that I am beinging this up now, but I have personally known many couples that almost broke up from the stresses involved in a marriage when both spouses work and have children. So, I guess what I am trying to say is that it is very important to look at both your expectations regarding lifestyle and children/daycare issues before you get engaged and NOT to incur debt. (I just wish I had the wisdom in my 20's that I have now!!!)

I always wanted to be a stay at home mother, My husband however, has never made a good salary. I have always made about twice as much as him. When I was single, and madly in love, I did not think that this would bother me. Well, when reality came, and I had NO CHOICE but to work, it really bothered me. I wanted more that anything to be home with my son full -time and I could not. AND it had nothing to do with living too high above our means. When my son was born, we lived in a neighborhood that my mother used to cringe at when she came to visit. Although it was not a dangerous neighborhood, it was not very nice and nothing like the neighborhood that I grew up in. I lived there because the rent was inexpensive and allowed me to be home with my son. As far as I was concerned, it was worth the sacrifice to be home with my baby. I made our apartment very nice and cozy and was only able to stay home for the first year and half after my son was born. I lived very frugally, drove an old car, prepared all meals from scratch, could not even buy things such as cold cuts because it was not in the budget. Instead, I made homemade chicken salad, potato salad, etc and even homemade baby food so that I could to cut down on our expenses because I wanted to be home with my son more than anything. Then my husband lost his job, and I was forced to go back to work. These are just issues that need to be looked at. My husband grew up poor and he did not see our finances as a problem. I however grew up in a typical miidle- class suburb. His family never saved, spent everything they had and never thought about tomorrow. They never owned a house and lived in an apt. So, my husband did not have the same goal as I did regarding buying a house. He did not see it as a priority like I did. As a result, I have had to be the responsible one, trying to think about the future. We eventually moved to another state and did buy a very cute house in a great neighborhood that we both love, but it was due to my planning, saving and dream. And, I have always had to work. My marriage has been very difficult and I am mentioning these things so that you can see the reality behind the words and know that there are many things need to be looked at when you are considering marrying someone.

I commend you having the maturity to look at all of this now.
If you are willing, anwering all of the above questions, will help you determine
the health of your relationship as well as the liklihood that the person you are with now is the right one for you to marry. Loving someone is NOT always enough to ensure happiness. There must be love as well as looking at many other factors.
I am looking foward to hearing your responses. I'm sure Boxgirl will have alot of interesting things to share with you!!!! I'm also sure some regular friends that have frequented this board as well will join in!!! :)

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