With her wedding only a few months away, BONA editor, Linda Mali, is sharing what she’s learning on the road to the altar.
For her first blog this week, she tackles what to think about before he pops the question. Let us know what you think about her advice and keep an eye out for her next blog soon.
Have you ever dated someone and feared they would propose, because you’re not sure what your answer would be? I certainly have. When #BhutBae proposed, I had no reservations about giving him my heart. Our relationship is easy and uncomplicated; as it should be. Don’t believe the hype about relationships needing drama in order to last and be ‘exciting’.
Before we met, I had been single for a number of years and yearned for a good man to come into my life. The most annoying statements from my “boo’d-up” friends were: “You want it too much, so it won’t happen until you let go,” and “the right guy will come, chomi; just be patient”. It’s so easy to say stuff like that when you’re in the comfort of your man’s arms every night! So, how did I get the good man? I was deliberate in my pursuit, and I’m not ashamed to say so. I also prayed harder than I ever prayed before. I came across a blog called The Praying Woman, which focus on the importance of getting your relationship with God right, first. I realised that somewhere along the line, my faith in and relationship with God had fallen by the wayside. How could I ever want a relationship with a man when the ultimate relationship itself needed work? So, to seek the man, I sought God first. They say you should be specific in your prayers, down to the smallest detail; so that’s what I did. I wanted a partner that was an analytical thinker (being a creative myself, I was done dating other creative types), who wore suits to work every day and made me feel incredibly special, valued and important.
Long before he proposed, I had started to ask myself certain questions to determine whether or not I was ready for this big step:
1.Are we able to resolve conflict?
This was a huge determining factor. I wanted to be aware of the extremes of his personality to see how I handled it. What’s he like when he’s angry, sad, enraged or happy? #BhutBae and I don’t fight, we disagree. Both of us are mature enough to understand that speaking above the other does not give you the upper hand. We don’t shout at each other, even when one of us is angry. I’m still learning to listen more than I speak; but, together, we have learnt to hash out an issue until it is resolved. We never go to bed until that is done. And best of all – we are both quick to apologise.
2. Have I dealt with my baggage?
We all have it – stuff from our past that threatens to interfere with our relationships in the present. I had to work through the trust issues I had in the past, learn to let go and understand that infidelity is nothing you can prevent or an indication of anything lacking on your part. Only when you let go of these demons can you truly be open to the joy of your relationship.
3. Does my family support our relationship?
It’s easy to become defensive about your love should friends or family be critical. If they raise a concern about your relationship, focus on the facts and not hide the truth. Be willing to admit that you might have neglected a problem. Parents and friends are not always right, but you should consider their legitimate opinions.
4. Do we bring out the best in each other?
A relationship in which you do not learn something new or have a desire to be better is dead in the water. If you’re not motivated to be your best self, rather leave.
5. Can I trust him to lead our relationship and future family?
Once you’re married, your man will have to lead and take control of certain aspects and decisions in your relationship. If you have any doubts about his ability to do this, perhaps you’re not compatible at this stage.
6. Are we truly passionate about each other?
I don’t mean sexual passion. But, are you excited about each other and would you sacrifice for the other person, knowing that they are not perfect? If you have bad habits that you know are a deal-breaker for him, are you prepared to let them go because you want a life with him more? Do you love him enough to seek his best interests even if it means denying yourself of your current desires? If your answers are yes, yes and yes, you may just be ready to do this thing.