Say what you will, but most everyone just seems to love a fairytale ending: the part of the story where the protagonist finds “the one,” the right person with whom they can settle down forever.
Have you started thinking that you’ve found the person with whom you’re going to spend forever? If so, then you are, hopefully, prepared to put in the work that will be needed to ensure that happy ending to your relationship.
It’s exciting when you think that you may have found the right person. But it’s important to take some precautions before getting too excited. You want to make a decision with both your head and your heart.
Make sure you’ve answered these questions before you jump in headfirst:
Where Are You Going to Live?
If you’re not already living together, this is a very important question. Are you going to move into the other person’s house? Will you both live in your current house? What are the logistics associated with moving into each other’s houses?
Even if you do already live together, think of this in a more long-term context. Are you prepared to enter into a lease together, or perhaps purchase a house if you decide to settle down?
If you haven’t tackled these questions, you probably need to do some more communicating before making a final commitment.
Have You Discussed Long-Term Plans?
You probably don’t need to know where you each envision yourselves in 20 years. But each of you probably has at least an idea of where you want to end up. Do you want to attend or finish college? Do you plan to settle in this city for the rest of your life, or do you want to move eventually?
You also need to ask those sometimes-unsettling relationship questions, too: Do you want kids? What do you think about marriage?
You both may not have everything all figured out now. But if you want to spend forever with this person, that means you’ll want to be on the same page for general long-term plans.
Do You Feel Comfortable Having Open Discussions?
Ask any relationship expert, and they’ll say that communication is the single most important part of a relationship. If you have poor communication, the rest of your relationship will certainly suffer for it.
You need to make sure you’re open to having frank discussions. That doesn’t mean either of you has to be rude or snide about things. Nor does it mean that you can’t be in a non-communicative mood at times. It only means that you shouldn’t feel fearful or worried about sharing important things that come up.
Think about how you’ve felt in the past when you’ve brought up important topics with this person. Have you felt safe bringing things up? And how have you felt when they need to talk to you?
Are You Talking About Finances?
Right up there with communication is money. No one likes talking about finances, but it’s an important part of life. You can’t expect things to run smoothly if you’re not willing to talk to each other about money.
In discussions over shared finances, it makes sense to discuss significant purchases with one another. But if one of you freaks out at the idea of the other spending a few dollars on something without asking beforehand, there may be a deeper underlying problem you need to address.
Either way, it’s important to come to an agreement about what major purchases constitute. Establishing it ahead of time–and sticking with it–should help to keep any future confrontations to a minimum.
Are You Sure There Are No Hidden Secrets?
If you’ve already decided that this person is the one, you’ve likely already reassured each other that there are no secrets between you. However, you may still have some doubts. Even if you’ve never had any reason to doubt your partner before, it can’t hurt to double check certain facts.
You can talk to your partner’s family and friends to get confirmation. But that’s a subjective ruling, and they may even lie to protect your partner. To try and get a more objective view, you could do some investigating on the down-low and try to make sure there are no secrets in your partner’s background.
You can do this by doing some online browsing. Perform a general online search on your significant other, and see if anything troublesome comes up. See what they shared on social media. Or you can even take a look at their available public records. An online people search gives you access to the information on millions of U.S. adults, possibly including your significant other.
If you are able to locate them in the database, you may also be able to perform a criminal records search to rule out any violent past behavior that could signal they aren’t necessarily safe to be around. It’s a great tool for trying to stay safe and learn more about anyone you’re close to.
Finding the one, that right person in a sea full of unfamiliar faces is a magical moment. It’s a way to take on the world with someone by your side. It can be a beautiful thing. As long as you both go into it with a willingness to communicate and honesty, your relationship is well-poised to last.
Image attribution: Polonio Video – stock.adobe.com