Being in love is an enchanting experience, but it may cloud your judgement. When you’re in a state of infatuation, you tend to become self-centered, blocking out obvious red flags. It is wise to approach marriage with caution, keeping your eyes wide open before taking such a life-changing step.

Vision partnered with Brett and Kate Ryan from Focus on the Family, and Alex Cook, founder of Wealth with Purpose to bring you a special Marriage and Money seminar live-streamed at Vision’s Brisbane studios and hosted by Neil Johnson from 20Twenty.

It’s not just couples who can benefit from the valuable insights and expertise shared by Brett, Kate and Alex; everyone will find gold nuggets of wisdom in this seminar series they can apply to their lives to help them make sound financial decisions and build strong relationships.

Kate stated the importance of having conversations about your expectations of married life before you get married because if you get married without discussing these things, it can be a huge shock when you are suddenly confronted with things you didn’t know about your spouse. Kate said some couples who sought counselling when these problems came up said that if they had known these things about their spouse before getting married, they would not have gone ahead with the marriage.

Alex stated that before you get married, it’s critical to have conversations about:

  • Where you’re going to live
  • Career and role expectations
  • How many children you want
  • Schooling
  • How to spend your money
  • What each person is bringing into the marriage in regard to personal savings and what it’s to be used for.

‘By having these conversations, you’ll understand each other’s differences because that’s what takes time to learn about your spouse. What is your spouse like, what kind of upbringing have they had, and what is driving them to make the decisions they’re making? Having those conversations as early as possible is brilliant,’ said Alex.

Kate mentioned other important conversations to have before getting married are:

  • Money
  • Communication
  • Handling conflict
  • Sexual intimacy.

Kate and Brett highly recommend pre-engagement counselling. They have sometimes seen couples break up over finances before they got married because they didn’t have transparent conversations until the pre-engagement counselling. These breakups were not necessarily over whether to have a joint bank account, it was the non-transparency about money while they were dating where the topic was deliberately avoided resulting in trust being broken before they got to the marriage. It often happens when one is making more money than the other, and they see that money as their money.

Others sometimes fly ahead, making marriage plans once they get the ring on the finger. Then they don’t want to pull out even if they see a red flag because they feel they are too far into the marriage plans.

‘For wisdom is better than jewels, and nothing desirable can equal it.’ Proverbs 8:11 CSB

You can find helpful resources on pre-engagement counselling, preparing for marriage, or financial planning on the Focus on the Family and Wealth With Purpose websites by clicking the links.

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