We won’t sugar coat it for you, these conversations aren’t going to be easy. However, they’re extremely necessary for ensuring that your relationship works out. After all, if you can’t have these conversations with your partner, how comfortable are you with them, really?
#1 How involved are supposed to be with parents, in-laws and family
Conversations regarding parents are never going to be easy, but they're absolutely necessary. Before deciding to get married, make it a point to speak to your partner about everything related to external family matters.
For example, while birthday celebrations for your in-laws are mandatory to attend, would birthday celebrations and other special events for cousins, aunties and everyone else mandatory? While it may seem silly at first, everyone's family is different and they may have a different dynamic from yours. Plus, for some in-laws, not showing up for family events could mean a point of contention and a sign of disrespect. So, it's best to check with your partner first and listen to what they have to say.
For couples who have an income disparity with one another, talking about finance and how exactly you'll split your pay is extremely important. Knowing just how much you'll put aside for essential items like groceries and bills could help prevent arguments. (See: 5 money issues couples fight over and how to solve them)
#3 Your career goals
Say for example, you see yourself working in a different city like Hong Kong in the future. Would your future spouse be comfortable with that?
Being able to speak about your dreams and goals with your partner can help determine the course of the relationship and how things will work out. This way, if you spring the idea of working or living in another city in the future or have a work goal that could affect the relationship, they're completely aware of it.
#4 Children or fur children
For some people, having children to carry on their legacy is one of their life-long goals. For others, simply having pets (or fur children) is equivalent to having human children. Whichever you choose, know that your decisions are completely valid.
However, does your future spouse feel the same way? Knowing this could either make or break the relationship.
Another extremely touchy subject in our conservative Asian society, religion has always and will continue to be a point of contention for some couples and their families. For some religions, conversion in order to marry is a requirement.
While such matters should only be between the parties involved in the relationship, pressure from families and in-laws could play a part in causing unnecessary stress and unhappiness.
Whichever the case, it's important to stay rooted in your decision as a couple and work as a team to come to a compromise or solution.
This article and image was originally published in The Singapore Women's Weekly.