Came across a book named "How to pick a spouse" [amazon] Although it was written from a Christian's view while I am not a Christian, there are quite a few good points I've never thought before.
The most important lesson may be -- you really need to think about questions about this, like what is a "good" marriage, and what you expect to see and what actually contribute to a "good" marriage. A marriage is a very serious life-long commitment. A wrong choice will possibly waste tons of time, with years of suffering, and thus you cannot determine to commit simply because you feel in the mood or because the woman is cute. Making the decision is really a skill, a skill which most people need take time to learn, from others' stories, statistics and critical thinking. And following are a few more detailed points I feel worthwhile to share.
A good marriage looks like ...
- "If both spouses work on trying to figure out how the other person will find more joy, more purpose, more success, then the ingredients for a good marriage are here." Wow, this totally answers my question: why bother to marry?
- "Don't marry a person unless on the day after your marriage, after a traffic accident causes your husband to become quadriplegic, you would still choose to stay married to the person." -- I'd add a condition: and you would be able to keep this promise.
The weird zone
- The weird zone: dating is very different from marriage, and two people in a relationship will amplify each other's good aspects while overlooking the bad. It's called the weird zone, and may urge you to make a quick but unreasonable decision.
- Solution: Anticipate it. Don't let the physical involvement happen too fast and the coming emotional bond affect your judgment. Give your friends and family real opportunities to speak about your choice.
What to observe: the yellow flags and good signs
- Honesty/deception: a red light if you found deception in your relationship. Also need to be a man with honesty and loyalty to the relationship.
- 7 Cs to look for in a good relationship: Character, Chemistry, Competency, Culture, Commitment, Communication, Core Values.
- It's really important to see how your girlfriend/fiancé behave under pressure, failure, conflicts rather than a romance date.
Some personal thoughts
- Balance: the two sides should have similar capability and responsibility. Otherwise the relationship cannot last.
- "Interesting people": attractive people not only know where are the fun places. More importantly, they know what they like and are able to devote a lot of time on it.