The Four Marriage Questions

 

For the young ones… and the mature, as needs be…

Many people marry for the wrong reasons and end up single, often with obligations, and holding a cynical view of love and relationships. But a short, simple test can help guide you toward what a successful marriage may look like.

If you and your potential spouse can both answer “yes” to most or all four of these questions, then you may end up with a great marriage. Of course, there are no guarantees. Life always has a way of surprising us.

Ask yourself each question. Can you say yes to each?

1) If this person stays just as he or she is for the rest of his or her life, would that be OK?

2) Would you like to become more like this person?

3) If you were to have a child with someone, would you want to have a child with this person?

4) If the child grew up to be exactly like this person, would that be OK?

I once got a call from my wife. She was at the home of a friend whose daughter was going to be married in one week to her high school sweetheart. She was visiting her mother, crying and upset, unsure whether the marriage was a good idea.

Four weeks before, he had called off the wedding. She was devastated and gave back the ring. He had come back to her the next day, sobbing, begging her to come back and get married. They traveled to Las Vegas but did not get married. When they returned, she had called off the wedding. Her friends gave her mixed messages about whether marrying him was a good idea.

She told her mother that she had felt like she had to go through with it because her parents had spent so much money. But she learned they didn’t care about that.

My wife called me and asked, “What are those four marriage questions again?”

I gave them to her, and she asked the daughter each question.

The daughter answered “no” to all four.

She canceled the wedding, and in two years she married a wonderful man. And they now have three beautiful children.

The four marriage questions may help you recognize that a potential partner may not be the best fit. They hint at what is required of your character.

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  1. Saint Augustine Member
    Saint Augustine
    @SaintAugustine

    I asked a chick one time how many kids she wanted to have (including options of adoption and snowflake babies); what she made of those Bible passages about wifely submission; “What do you want out of life?”; and “When do you want to get married?”

    She’s been my little Bluebonnet since 2006.  Married her in 2007.

    • #1
  2. Saint Augustine Member
    Saint Augustine
    @SaintAugustine

    Courtesy of the internet:

    When I say I wanta biblical wife What people think I mean: I want a wife  who is passive and subservient What I really mean: I want a wife who is  totally

    • #2
  3. Saint Augustine Member
    Saint Augustine
    @SaintAugustine

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):

    I asked a chick one time how many kids she wanted to have (including options of adoption and snowflake babies); what she made of those Bible passages about wifely submission; “What do you want out of life?”; and “When do you want to get married?”

    She’s been my little Bluebonnet since 2006. Married her in 2007.

    I think we must have already confirmed we were compatible theologically and politically.

    • #3
  4. EB Thatcher
    EB
    @EB

     

    JAEL

    • #4
  5. Mark Alexander Coolidge
    Mark Alexander
    @MarkAlexander

    EB (View Comment):

     

    JAEL

    Hmmm… Perhaps there’s a fifth question…

    • #5
  6. MISTER BITCOIN Member
    MISTER BITCOIN
    @MISTERBITCOIN

    Question 5: prenuptial agreement?

     

    • #6
  7. Kephalithos Member
    Kephalithos
    @Kephalithos

    This is an excellent litmus test.

    The problem is that, in 2021, it’s practically impossible to meet someone who actually passes it. (Then again, it’s practically impossible to meet anyone.)

    • #7
  8. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Mark Alexander: 2) Would you like to become more like this person?

    If I said that to my wife, she’d put padlocks on her underwear drawer . . .

     

    • #8
  9. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Kephalithos (View Comment):
    The problem is that, in 2021, it’s practically impossible to meet someone who actually passes it.

    Or would tell the truth . . .

    • #9
  10. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):
    I think we must have already confirmed we were compatible theologically and politically.

    This is another important thing.  Sadly, being compatible politically has mushroomed into a monster with married couples demanding idiological purity of their spouses . . .

    • #10
  11. Marjorie Reynolds Coolidge
    Marjorie Reynolds
    @MarjorieReynolds

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):

    I asked a chick one time how many kids she wanted to have (including options of adoption and snowflake babies); what she made of those Bible passages about wifely submission; “What do you want out of life?”; and “When do you want to get married?”

    She’s been my little Bluebonnet since 2006. Married her in 2007.

    What’s a snowflake baby?

    • #11
  12. Saint Augustine Member
    Saint Augustine
    @SaintAugustine

    Marjorie Reynolds (View Comment):

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):

    I asked a chick one time how many kids she wanted to have (including options of adoption and snowflake babies); what she made of those Bible passages about wifely submission; “What do you want out of life?”; and “When do you want to get married?”

    She’s been my little Bluebonnet since 2006. Married her in 2007.

    What’s a snowflake baby?

    Frozen embryo leftover from in vitro fertilization surplus. They can be implanted and born, and sometimes are.

    • #12
  13. Marjorie Reynolds Coolidge
    Marjorie Reynolds
    @MarjorieReynolds

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):

    Marjorie Reynolds (View Comment):

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):

    I asked a chick one time how many kids she wanted to have (including options of adoption and snowflake babies); what she made of those Bible passages about wifely submission; “What do you want out of life?”; and “When do you want to get married?”

    She’s been my little Bluebonnet since 2006. Married her in 2007.

    What’s a snowflake baby?

    Frozen embryo leftover from in vitro fertilization surplus. They can be implanted and born, and sometimes are.

    Implanted into a woman other than the mother?

    I didn’t know it was a thing.

    • #13
  14. Hoyacon Member
    Hoyacon
    @Hoyacon

    I don’t find a “yes” to #2 to be particularly desirable.

    • #14
  15. Gary Robbins Reagan
    Gary Robbins
    @GaryRobbins

    An old adage I have found from being a Family Law Attorney for almost 30 years.

    “Wives think that their Husbands will change and they don’t.  Husband’s think that their Wives will never change, and they do.”

    • #15
  16. EB Thatcher
    EB
    @EB

    Hoyacon (View Comment):

    I don’t find a “yes” to #2 to be particularly desirable.

    Depends on what the person is thinking.  After my  husband and I got married, I discovered that he was very good at apologizing when the situation warranted it.  Because of my upbringing, I wasn’t good at it.  Because of his influence, I saw that apologizing doesn’t make you look bad or stupid or …….  Now I am much better at recognizing when I need to apologize and then actually doing it.

    • #16
  17. TheRightNurse Member
    TheRightNurse
    @TheRightNurse

    I think those are pretty good questions.  I’d stick with the first, 3rd, 4th.  The second…maybe not so much.  It isn’t that I don’t love my hubby, but I don’t want to be even more like him.  That would get weird.

    I always tell my friends that it’s 5 things for a good marriage; research has shown it.  Religion, Money, Politics, Children, Family.

    If you can agree on Religion (which one? Do you raise kids that way, etc?), Money (save vs. spend? How much do you need to be happy? Do you want expensive things out of life?), Politics (do you agree or at least tolerate the way your spouse sees the world working best?), Children (want them? Not? What if they’re imperfect? Adoption? Abortion?), Family (mine vs. yours, how will we visit? Do we stay near? Do you intend to care for your parents as they age?).

    If you can sort these things out, you’ll generally be able to figure the rest out.  Hubby and I already knew most of these about one another before we even physically met, so it was really all little stuff from there.

    • #17
  18. Saint Augustine Member
    Saint Augustine
    @SaintAugustine

    Marjorie Reynolds (View Comment):

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):

    Marjorie Reynolds (View Comment):

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):

    I asked a chick one time how many kids she wanted to have (including options of adoption and snowflake babies); what she made of those Bible passages about wifely submission; “What do you want out of life?”; and “When do you want to get married?”

    She’s been my little Bluebonnet since 2006. Married her in 2007.

    What’s a snowflake baby?

    Frozen embryo leftover from in vitro fertilization surplus. They can be implanted and born, and sometimes are.

    Implanted into a woman other than the mother?

    I didn’t know it was a thing.

    Implanted into a woman other than the genetic/biological mother, yes, I believe so.

    • #18
  19. Marjorie Reynolds Coolidge
    Marjorie Reynolds
    @MarjorieReynolds

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):

    Marjorie Reynolds (View Comment):

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):

    Marjorie Reynolds (View Comment):

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):

    I asked a chick one time how many kids she wanted to have (including options of adoption and snowflake babies); what she made of those Bible passages about wifely submission; “What do you want out of life?”; and “When do you want to get married?”

    She’s been my little Bluebonnet since 2006. Married her in 2007.

    What’s a snowflake baby?

    Frozen embryo leftover from in vitro fertilization surplus. They can be implanted and born, and sometimes are.

    Implanted into a woman other than the mother?

    I didn’t know it was a thing.

    Implanted into a woman other than the genetic/biological mother, yes, I believe so.

    I knew that it happens in surrogacy but I didn’t know it was thing with ‘leftover’ embryos.

    • #19
  20. Cow Girl Thatcher
    Cow Girl
    @CowGirl

    You know…there were many facets of my newly-wed husband that weren’t a good answer to those questions. Yet–I married him because when I first met him in the 6th grade, I recognized that he was very intelligent…probably the first person I’d met that I felt was as smart as I was. Doesn’t that sound just AWFUL??? But, seriously–it attracted me to him. He read books all the time. He had a very advanced vocabulary. (He knew words that I knew, that nobody else I knew, knew.) He was ultra polite to adults: “Pardon me, ma’am?” instead of “Huh?” He was also really cute with amazing brown eyes. 

    BUT.

    I was 5 feet 7 inches tall, with two more inches added by eighth grade, and his head may have come up to my armpit, if I had ever been close enough to him to measure. We attended the same small schools through high school, and I was never his girlfriend. But, when our paths crossed again at age 21…Bingo! We knew we were the ones for each other. We got married with virtually no courtship at all.

    Forty-seven years, five children, five states, and lots of changes from both of us, and we’re still in love and still married. No one from either side of our families would have put money on that in 1974!

    • #20
  21. MISTER BITCOIN Member
    MISTER BITCOIN
    @MISTERBITCOIN

    Cow Girl (View Comment):

    You know…there were many facets of my newly-wed husband that weren’t a good answer to those questions. Yet–I married him because when I first met him in the 6th grade, I recognized that he was very intelligent…probably the first person I’d met that I felt was as smart as I was. Doesn’t that sound just AWFUL??? But, seriously–it attracted me to him. He read books all the time. He had a very advanced vocabulary. (He knew words that I knew, that nobody else I knew, knew.) He was ultra polite to adults: “Pardon me, ma’am?” instead of “Huh?” He was also really cute with amazing brown eyes.

    BUT.

    I was 5 feet 7 inches tall, with two more inches added by eighth grade, and his head may have come up to my armpit, if I had ever been close enough to him to measure. We attended the same small schools through high school, and I was never his girlfriend. But, when our paths crossed again at age 21…Bingo! We knew we were the ones for each other. We got married with virtually no courtship at all.

    Forty-seven years, five children, five states, and lots of changes from both of us, and we’re still in love and still married. No one from either side of our families would have put money on that in 1974!

    How tall is your husband now?

     

    • #21
  22. navyjag Lincoln
    navyjag
    @navyjag

    Agree with RN and Hoyacon, #2 doesn’t sound right.  I wouldn’t know what to do with a bra. Haul eggs in it?

     

    • #22
  23. J Climacus Member
    J Climacus
    @JClimacus

    These are pretty good questions. I have a bit of a problem with #1. I wouldn’t expect my wife to stay the same over a lifetime of marriage, and I certainly hope I wouldn’t be the same man in my 60’s that I was in my early 20’s. We all have “growth areas.” If my wife was exactly the same at 60 as she was at 26, I’d be afraid she was a vampire.

    • #23
  24. Pony Convertible Member
    Pony Convertible
    @PonyConvertible

    If I changed the wording of each question from “this person” to “you”, I would have answered no to all four questions when I was the age of people are looking to get married and start a life together.  Try it yourself.

    None of us stay “exactly the way we are” as implied in #1, and the though the rest of the questions.  I’m sure glad you didn’t give those questions to my wife 4 decades ago.

    • #24
  25. Randy Weivoda Moderator
    Randy Weivoda
    @RandyWeivoda

    J Climacus (View Comment):

    These are pretty good questions. I have a bit of a problem with #1. I wouldn’t expect my wife to stay the same over a lifetime of marriage, and I certainly hope I wouldn’t be the same man in my 60’s that I was in my early 20’s. We all have “growth areas.” If my wife was exactly the same at 60 as she was at 26, I’d be afraid she was a vampire.

    I think everyone knows that people will change over time.  The point, though, is that some women marry a man whom they believe has flaws that they can fix.  Then they become disillusioned when they can’t fix the man.  As an example, many years ago I worked with a guy who chased after and slept with an incredible number of women.  His fiance apparently thought that once they were officially married he would finally be faithful to her.  Big surprise, he was still a cheater.

     

    • #25
  26. Mark Alexander Coolidge
    Mark Alexander
    @MarkAlexander

    Pony Convertible (View Comment):

    If I changed the wording of each question from “this person” to “you”, I would have answered no to all four questions when I was the age of people are looking to get married and start a life together. Try it yourself.

    None of us stay “exactly the way we are” as implied in #1, and the though the rest of the questions. I’m sure glad you didn’t give those questions to my wife 4 decades ago.

    Look at them again and assume you are missing the point of the questions. Can you see?

    • #26
  27. Mark Alexander Coolidge
    Mark Alexander
    @MarkAlexander

    Randy Weivoda (View Comment):

    J Climacus (View Comment):

    These are pretty good questions. I have a bit of a problem with #1. I wouldn’t expect my wife to stay the same over a lifetime of marriage, and I certainly hope I wouldn’t be the same man in my 60’s that I was in my early 20’s. We all have “growth areas.” If my wife was exactly the same at 60 as she was at 26, I’d be afraid she was a vampire.

    I think everyone knows that people will change over time. The point, though, is that some women marry a man whom they believe has flaws that they can fix. Then they become disillusioned when they can’t fix the man. As an example, many years ago I worked with a guy who chased after and slept with an incredible number of women. His fiance apparently thought that once they were officially married he would finally be faithful to her. Big surprise, he was still a cheater.

     

    Yes.

    • #27
  28. Saint Augustine Member
    Saint Augustine
    @SaintAugustine

    Randy Weivoda (View Comment):
    The point, though, is that some women marry a man whom they believe has flaws that they can fix.  Then they become disillusioned when they can’t fix the man.

    Mrs. Augustine was smart not to marry a philanderer or a thief, etc.

    I should ask her if she had ideas of teaching me how to wear clothes that matched and things like that. She succeeded to some extent.

    I guess the point is that there’s problems women can fix in a man, and there’s problems they shouldn’t come near with a ten-foot pole.

    • #28
  29. Randy Weivoda Moderator
    Randy Weivoda
    @RandyWeivoda

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):

    Randy Weivoda (View Comment):
    The point, though, is that some women marry a man whom they believe has flaws that they can fix. Then they become disillusioned when they can’t fix the man.

    Mrs. Augustine was smart not to marry a philanderer or a thief, etc.

    I should ask her if she had ideas of teaching me how to wear clothes that matched and things like that. She succeeded to some extent.

    I guess the point is that there’s problems women can fix in a man, and there’s problems they shouldn’t come near with a ten-foot pole.

    And some guys do stop acting like reprobates eventually.  Once a guy is beyond a certain age he may not have the hormonal drive to keep chasing other women. Men in their 20’s and 30’s are more likely to commit crimes than men in the 60’s and 70’s.  But the wise course of action is to not assume that a wedding ring will reform a man of the behaviors you find unacceptable.  I don’t mean to put the “bad behavior” charge on men exclusively.  Guys, if your girlfriend drinks or gets high too much, don’t assume she will settle down and sober up just because you’ve married her.

    • #29