When it comes to dating and marriage, who better to ask for advice than the people who have seen what works and what doesn’t … divorce lawyers. No one wants to think it’ll happen to them when they tie the knot, but the statistics remind us that approximately half of married couples end up divorcing. And since divorce lawyers have seen it all in relationships, maybe it’s a good idea to take their dating advice.
- Really get to know them - You can tell a lot about someone just from the way they talk about their family, and that can give you insight into their future goals and outlook on life, too. Try to learn about their hobbies, education and background and divorce lawyer Susan Myers recommends enlisting help from friends if you need to, as well as searching Google and social media to check out your date.
- Know what real commitment means - Being married, or in an exclusive, monogamous relationship means a long-term commitment, one that some people just don’t seem to understand when they sign up for it. Divorce attorney James Sexton says marriage is the “most significant thing you can ever do,” so make sure you know what you’re getting into before you say “I do.”
- Your S.O. won’t change - “If you want to be with a person who is social and very outgoing, then don’t marry someone who is a homebody,” attorney Linda Zhou explains. Don’t expect that your partner’s quirks or annoying habits will go away, if anything, they may bother you more over time. Expecting someone to change for you isn’t fair or realistic, for better or worse.
- Talk about finances before you need to - Having realistic conversations about family, religion, sex and politics is important, but discussing finances tops the list. Sure, it can be awkward, but you can’t ignore the topic because it makes you uncomfortable. Finding out how much debt someone has, what shape their credit is in and their spending habits is much better than going in blind.
- Dating is easy … marriage is hard - If your relationship is filled with drama, conflict and stress when you’re dating, think about what getting married would be like. Things don’t magically get better after you tie the knot, so keep that in mind if you’re bogged down with negativity while dating.