In a previous blog post, I urged my engaged friends: Don’t Waste Your Engagement! and pointed out 5 ways you can grow and invest in your relationship while engaged. Number 3 on that list? Go on double dates. I’ll quote straight from that post:
“Grab those married couples you’ve always looked up to and go out to dinner. Ask them to share about their engagement and first few years of marriage. Share with them your fears and concerns and let them encourage you and pray for you. This was one of my favorite parts of engagement; it gave an excuse to ask about people’s marriages and spend time with couples we loved. Whether it’s your parents, mentors, or a couple that just got married a year ago, be humble and ask questions and you’ll be so blessed by what you learn and the relationships you deepen.”
So today I want to share 7 questions I think you should be asking your married friends on those double dates! These questions go from big-picture to practicals and will help you keep perspective during the engagement/wedding planning process and have a better idea of what to expect and how to pray for your marriage. Not to mention, they’re great ways to get to know your married friends better!
The key to these questions? Ask with a humble heart. You may have read every pre-martial book known to man, been maid of honor in 7 weddings, etc. but you haven’t been married. So take a deep breath, and just ask questions! Their experiences may not perfectly match yours, but I bet there’s something in their story you can learn and grow from.
1. What are the things you invested in that you’re glad you did?
2. What things will I not care about in 5 years?
Hint: probably not the centerpieces 🙂
3. What are things you wish you had done or known leading up to marriage?
4. What were some of the challenges you faced in your first year of marriage?
5. What are habits you two keep and recommend to others?
For example: Friends shared with us their devotional rituals, prayer times, chore lists, meal plans, etc.
6. What were the biggest surprises for you in marriage?
Get ready for some fun stories from this question!
7. What are the biggest things you’ve learned and ways you’ve grown through marriage?
A bonus question I would throw in here is to ask couples if they’ll pray for you! Share with them what’s been hard and good about engagement and your fears and excitements for marriage and ask them to pray you through the transition. Surround yourself with people that are invested in and praying for you two and your marriage.
Alvin and I asked these questions of every couple we could leading up to our wedding, and appreciated the season of being poured into by people we knew and loved. Now there’s a trust established that allows us to share with those same couples how we’re really doing. Knowing their stories and opening our relationship up to them has only deepened those relationships.
So what are you waiting for? Get some double dates on the calendar!