Cupid's Pulse Article: Relationship Advice: Is It Too Soon to Get Engaged?Cupid's Pulse Article: Relationship Advice: Is It Too Soon to Get Engaged?

By Dr. Jane Greer

When is it too soon to get engaged? There are so many considerations that go into making this decision, from practical issues such as having enough money to finishing a degree to living in the same place, to more philosophical ones like is there a proper timeline for true love? Sometimes people have to first deal with other commitments and responsibilities before taking the plunge. But what if you meet someone and know instantly that person is your soulmate, do you still have to wait? Some think the answer to that is no. Nick Jonas and Priyanka Chopra announced their engagement after dating for only two months.

Quick engagements can be a sign that one or both parties are ready to settle down and feel the security and stability that comes with marriage. However, there are a number of pieces of relationship advice to consider before taking this next all-important step.

One of the biggest questions that comes up is, does it make sense to wait even if all the pieces are in place so that you can have more time to bring each other into the other’s respective world? In other words, does having the inside track on your partner’s life before you’re all in add to the success of a marriage? Some might worry that the intensity of the high one feels when they first fall in love won’t last, and therefore won’t be enough to sustain you through life’s ups and downs. If you do feel, however, it is enough to get you through, and you are seriously considering a quick engagement, it can be helpful to ask yourself why. Is it because you simply want to get married and crave the security that comes with that? Or were you disappointed by a previous relationship and now eager to move forward with someone who’s ready to truly commit and get married? Or is it all about the person, that you have fallen so hard for one another, that you have become a part of each other’s lives so completely, and there is enough compatibility, that you feel you want to and will be able to continue to make things work between you?

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Whatever the case, most people do find that the all-consuming, instant attraction eventually, and really inevitably, wanes. That’s why a certain amount of time and effort is generally important to allow the relationship to solidify so you have the chance to really learn how to work things out together, and to see how each of you reacts to different situations. With time, you’ll move from that googly-eyed stage where your partner can do no wrong, to eventually “sobering up,” so to speak, and deal with life – sickness, cars that don’t work, endless bills, having to work late – as opposed to the euphoria you might be feeling when you first come together. In fact, the “honeymoon phase” can often last longer than most people think, in some cases even up to a year, but by the time you move away from that and into everyday reality where you need to be able to work together as a couple to deal with the nuts and bolts of each day, it takes more than rose-colored glasses to navigate the raging rapids. If you don’t manage to build that strong foundation, it will only be a matter of time before your individual needs, as well as all the daily hits of living that create friction and tension, tear you apart.

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If you are in love, and if marriage is on the table, here are a few things you can ask yourself to determine if you are ready. First, do you think you are able to deal with your differences and compromise around them so you end up at a joint decision that feels good for both of you? Are you able to communicate and listen to each other, and ultimately relate to each other’s feelings, so that you both feel understood? Can you problem solve, as well as work through and clear up your anger and disappointment so those feelings don’t linger and cause trouble between you? Do you have empathy for each other? If you have these skills in place, then you are starting your life together with a full toolbox of important skills.

Nick and Priyanka seem to have found in each other what they are looking for, and have faith that they can continue to keep love alive. If you, too, have that trust in your partner then perhaps a short engagement can work for you as well.

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