Three years after her wedding, a bride tracked me down. She wanted me to know that they had a two-year old son—and that they were getting divorced. The night she conceived, she knew that the marriage wouldn’t last. . .they never talked. She was afraid to ask anything of her husband for fear of arguing. She thought that a baby would force them to talk. The baby didn’t. . .a baby doesn’t have that kind of power.
The German philosopher Nietzche claimed that in its essence, marriage is one long, grand conversation.
If marriage is a conversation, do you and your partner enjoy talking with each other? Are you comfortable just being together?
When I meet with couples as they create their wedding ceremony, I give them the following list of questions—some of which they’ve never asked of each other. Perhaps a few of these will spark a new conversation between you and your partner.
1. Who are your role models for marriage? Why are they models? How realistic a model are they?
2. When people speak of your wedding, what 3 words do you want them to say? What 3 words do you not want them to say?
3. Is your wedding day a beginning or a touch point in your life together?
4. What was the most moving, most joyful wedding you’ve attended? What do you want to be the most joyful moment of your wedding day?
5. Is your partner your life OR does your partner give you life?
6. What makes your partner worthy of your love? What makes you worthy of your partner’s love?
7. What are your expectations of each other? Do your expectations make each of you the best you are capable of being?
8. What is your biggest fear for your life together?
9. What is your definition of success? As an individual? As a couple?
10. On you 25th wedding anniversary, what would you like to look back upon?