Marriage is a union to which one should not join lightly; subsequently, it is important for a couple to contemplate upon the relationship and what the couple is promising to do. Before promising another person how they will treat them during the marital relationship, one needs to take stock of their partnership, one’s feelings towards the other partner, and assess the capabilities of both persons. Next, it is important to examine one’s own likes, dislikes, and other pertinent information to the union. In order to not completely reinvent the process of making these vows, it is important to look at examples of other marital vows. One’s next step is to write down some general concepts that are important to that person’s vows. Finally, after much contemplation, one should be ready to write her / his vows. In this way, one shall be able to promise commitment to the most important person in one’s life.
Although people often make the same vows- pledge of allegiance, swearing into the military or public office, statement of beliefs or a creed in church – several times, it is important to understand the implications of a vow. Merriam-Webster’s on-line dictionary (2014) define a vow as, “[A] solemn promise or assertion; specifically: one by which a person is bound to an act, service, or condition” (Merriam-Webster, 2014). Unlike other vows which curiously are repeated over and over again, marriage vows are typically meant to be said once (unless they are said to commemorate a special occasion such as a 50th wedding anniversary). If the intention of the person is to make such a vow, then it should be important to first observe why they are making that vow.
When looking to make a vow to one’s perspective life partner, it is important to observe thoughts and feelings. A commonly overlooked mistake happens when one partner holds a glorified image of the other partner in their mind which does not reflect the partner’s concrete self. If one finds that they are in love with the idea of the partner and what they represent, then the marriage to that partner should not be recommended. If the person in question truly loves their partner – faults and all – they should start thinking about what they love about that person. Is one’s love based on a give-and-take relationship, or is the relationship codependent? Another important question to ask is how you relate to this person: is your partner an extremely intimate friend who you enjoy spending a great deal of time with or do you have a tumultuous relationship with your partner?
To know if you want to promise the rest of your life to someone, it is also important to inventory both partners’ lifestyles to see what kinds of adversity the couple can handle. A common cause for conflict is money, so it is important to know both partner’s money habits. Other points that need to be inventoried is religious attitudes, activity level, sexual expectations, level of...