How to Figure Out if You Should Get Married

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If you are trying to figure out if you should get married, you might be unsure what the pros and cons of marriage are. Perhaps you feel madly in love with someone but are not sure you could enjoy one relationship for the rest of your life. Maybe you aren't aware of how your financial situation would change if you got married, or feel uncertain about losing your independence for good. There are several questions to ask yourself as you decide whether or not to tie the knot.

Take a Long-Term Perspective

As you ask yourself if you should get married, shift your focus from your feelings right now to thoughts of 10 years from now. You should ask yourself why you are willing to spend the rest of your life making marriage a priority, according to Mark O'Connell, Harvard psychologist and psychotherapist. Ask yourself if your partner makes you a better person by such measures as encouraging you to grow and pursue your dreams. This may help you decide whether marriage is worth it to you in the long run.

Analyze the Practical Benefits

Getting married may actually offer many practical benefits over staying single. While these benefits are not, in and of themselves, a reason to marry, they may make marriage a more appealing option if you are "on the fence." Husbands and wives are healthier, happier and live longer than their single counterparts, according to the article "What Are the Social Benefits of Marriage?" on the For Your Marriage website. Furthermore, married people build more wealth than single or cohabiting couples.

Survey Your Priorities

There might be several reasons you are considering marriage, but certain reasons are not strong enough. For example, if you are more enamored with the idea of a wedding than the idea of a marriage, you should avoid getting married for now. While the planning of a wedding may be exciting, there is more at stake than one day, according to Dr. Phil McGraw. If you are considering marrying because of pressure from family or friends, know that marriage is a personal decision and should not be made by anyone but yourself.

Ask Yourself What's at Stake

Analyze your relationship and ask yourself what you might lose by getting married. Perhaps your boyfriend is generous, loving and makes the effort to include your family. In this case, you may not feel as though you are losing anything. However, if you have to give up your friends, family or career, you may be left emotionally bankrupt, according to Dr. Phil. Making sure the outcome is worth the risk is essential as you make your decision.