Want to know what your current boyfriend or girlfriend will be like as a husband or wife?
The answer to this question could be the most important piece of information to consider before marrying your boyfriend or girlfriend. Or letting your kids marry their boyfriend or girlfriend.
And the best part? The answer to this question can be said in one sentence.
What will my significant other be like as a spouse?
“The best predictor of future behavior is past behavior.”
(This is according to my good friend, Dr. Steve Wilke.)
It’s as easy as that. What are they like now?
Does she fall apart when things don’t go perfectly? Does the slightest disappointment lead her to act like nothing ever goes right? That’s what she’ll be like as a wife.
Does he check out of life when he’s under stress, escaping into video games or worse? Then that’s what he’ll do as a husband.
Putting a ring on someone’s finger doesn’t change their brain—it just means you now own their issues.
Where those dating go wrong:
I almost had empathy for a wife, married two years, until she completed her sentence: “My husband spends 6 hours a day playing video games…just like he did before we got married!”
How could she not expect that?
Did she think marriage would “cure” her husband of his fascination with a passive past-time?
Remember: the brain doesn’t change just because you put a wedding ring on someone’s finger.
A man who married a younger woman was frustrated that she was a bit messy. Well, maybe more than a bit. The thing is, she didn’t notice the mess, and she didn’t even seem to care. But guys, when a girlfriend’s apartment or bedroom is constantly messy, do you think a diamond ring and a thirty-minute ceremony will suddenly turn her into a neat-freak? Really?
A solution: “How do they behave now?”
If you want to know how your boyfriend or girlfriend will behave as a spouse, honestly examine how they have behaved after their infatuation with you died down (infatuated people are a little more motivated to put up a false front). If you get engaged and/or married in the flush of infatuation, just realize you don’t really know what you’re signing up for. You might get lucky—or then again, you might not.
Remember the Wilke dictum: the best predictor of future behavior is past behavior.
Sharing this with a friend or family member currently in a serious relationship looking to move forward could save them a world of trouble. Or at least help them realize that the problem needs to be solved before getting married, not after.