Things to ponder if you are thinking of getting married:
IF YOU ARE A MAN:
You are not only marrying her. You are marrying her family too. You will always need to have the approval of your wife's entire family - down to the 4th degree of consanguinity. Your family background, source of livelihood, even your family's medical history will need to be uncovered.
You will have to deal with a monster, I mean, mother in law. You will always have to be on the look out for your wife's mother who will do anything and everything to get her daughter back.
You have to be reachable at all times. When your wife sends you a text message, you have the obligation to text back within 1 minute. There is no excuse for not being able to do so. Unless you want to be suspected of seeing someone else, it is your duty as the husband to let your wife know where you are.
You have to be big on birthdays. Never forget you wife's birthday. Not ever! Never! This would be akin to World War III. Your father in law won't mind if you forget his birthday, but this would not be the same with your mother in law. Her birthday is supposed to be regarded as an event second only to the day God created the world.
You have to be like your father in law. Remember that the first man in your wife's life is her father. He is her childhood hero, her protector, her best buddy. You wouldn't want to put up with being compared with him everyday, would you? Maintain harmony in the house by mimicking your father-in-law. Friendly reminder: Only mimic the good habits.
You have to earn more than your wife does. This is so true, unless you are comfortable with being branded as a slob, a leech, a non-achiever. My tip: Do not marry someone who is way up the corporate ladder. A peer would be the best choice. Keep this old cliche in mind - "When hunger walks through the door, love flies out the window."
IF YOU ARE A WOMAN:
You have to do housework. No more daddy's little girl for you. Say good bye to the housemaids and the ladies in waiting. You have to learn to do laundry, clean the house, and iron clothes. Things that other people did for you before you got married. You will take care of the kids and bust your brains trying to follow a tight budget. You will invoke all the powers of the universe to keep up with all the things you need to do.
You have to learn to be submissive. Accept the fact that society dictates that the man is the authority in the household. He draws up all the plans, makes the decisions and expects you to agree. You can only suggest. What your husband thinks is right, then it maybe is.
You have to show your in laws that your husband made the right choice when he married you. Expect your mother in law to be ringing your doorbell everyday. She would check every nook and cranny of your house for dust. She would watch how you cook her son's meals. She would frown on your body hugging shirt and call it "improper clothing." Your father in law could only shake his head. He is the only one you could call an ally. After all, gaining a daughter is always a good thing.
You have to really learn to cook. After a long day at work, your husband would expect a good home cooked meal from you. Get online and learn a new recipe. Buy cookbooks and ask your mother in law for tips on how to make the perfect casserole. (Believe me, your mother in law will love you for this.) "The best way to a man's heart is through his stomach." True. Look at couples who have stayed married for a long time - have you noticed how big the husbands' bellies are?
You have to keep the relationship's skeletons forever hidden. Regardless of how hurt you are, you are expected to keep it to yourself. You are expected to be strong. Our society refuses to accept that there are women in troubled relationships. You will always be blamed for your husband's behavior. You should keep your mouth shut and accept your fate. You married him after all.
I hope I did not scare you into getting married. I only want to draw the line between fantasy and reality. Before you exchange those vows, be doubly-doubly sure. In my Philippines, there is no Divorce Law. House Bill 1799 is still in limbo. The state only grants Annulment or Nullity of Marriage whose provisions are not very applicable to people trapped in a bad relationship.
Think well and think hard before you marry. A marriage contract is the only contract without a termination clause. This only proves that marriage is not a word. It is a sentence - A LIFE SENTENCE.
If you think you are emotionally and financially ready, if you have weighed out all the pros and cons, then go ahead and start a life with your beloved. Work hard to keep the relationship healthy and fulfilling. Raise your children in way that they would look at your relationship as a something they too would want to have someday.
Peace and love on a rainy Sunday night!