The holidays bring more proposals than any other season. According to a 2019 Statista study, December is the most popular month to get engaged. Before saying ‘I Do’ to the big question, though, TikTok’s Jeff Guenther (better known as @TherapistJeff) advises people to ask 10 questions first. These help solidify that you and your partner are on the same page before inking the deal.
Guenther is a licensed professional counselor and an unexpected TikTok star. With a bachelor’s degree in child and family development from the University of Southern California, and a master’s in marriage and couples counseling from San Diego State University, Guenther’s now taking his expertise to social media.
In a recent TikTok, he details, in a helpful, rapid-fire format, the top 10 questions to ask before you get married. The basics:
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Get Granular about Commitment
It feels obvious, but Guenther suggests starting by confirming the commitment. Ask, “do you have any doubts or fears about making this commitment?” If you can safely move on from this question, then it is important to define what that commitment means. Specifically, he says to label what cheating means to your partner, since cheating could mean different things to different people. Would playful flirting or a close emotional bond bother your partner? Define this before moving on.
Dive Deep into Logistics
Next, he suggests taking a deep dive into logistics. Do you want kids? If so, how many? Are you combining finances? Do you want to remain monogamous, or explore other open options? What relationship do you have with your family, and would you want your parents to move in with you if they ever need to?
Clarify Communication Styles
Guenther delves a little deep next with a few questions on communication style. He advises asking your partner how they think you can improve this part of your relationship together. Express what you want to be open about. “What secrets are okay to keep private? When does omitting information seem deceitful?” Guenther recommends asking.
Finally, figure out how your partner would want to handle the bad, if it were to ever happen. Guenther suggests clarifying what your partner would do if they ever felt like they were falling out of love. Would they talk to you or their friends about it? How would you want to handle that situation as a couple? Finish by defining your partner’s last straw. What would cause your partner to start considering a divorce?
Check out all of Guenther’s tips:
Effective communication is the key that ties everything together. So have these conversations now to make harder conversations easier down the road.