Don’t jump to conclusions if you and your partner are arguing and bickering more frequently now that you are engaged. It might seem that the engagement period would make everything better for you both, with all its excitement and certainty, but it is very common to have more fights, especially since you are committed to spending your entire lives together. Amanda Ruiz is a licensed professional counselor and the founder of The Counseling Collective. Engaged opens up the possibility of having a very intense, energy-consuming conversation about how you will combine your lives. This can lead to many topics that are not directly relevant to your relationship, or maybe you avoided or delayed discussing them until they were absolutely necessary.
Is he moving in with me or you? Will you purchase a house together? What happens if you combine your bank accounts? What will you do for the holidays? Is it possible to have children? If so, when? Ruiz states that these are only a few of the topics Ruiz will be discussing. She adds that while you may have discussed these issues when you were dating, once you get engaged you will have to confront these topics and have potentially difficult conversations.
Ivanna Colangelo is a licensed marriage and family therapist. She explains that couples are living longer relationships and more often than ever before getting married. Many newly engaged couples are shocked to find that they argue more when they should be happy and in love. She says that even though you are not married yet, the stress of being a family unit and living together forever suddenly makes it more difficult. “Another reason is that planning a wedding is stressful-coordinating all the little details can be like a full-time job, and this kind of stress can put even a good relationship to the test.” You might feel that you are too busy and distracted to give your partner the attention they need.
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Colangelo says that pressure can be added by family and friends to engaged couples. She says that family members may forget this is your wedding day, and become too involved in decision-making or feel guilty about not following their expectations. One or both of the partners might feel that the other isn’t supporting them and instead supports their family-of origin in an effort to maintain peace. Family issues such as finances, guest list, who plays what role and so forth can also play a part in the wedding and may lead to disapproval and disagreement among engaged couples.
Experts agree that fighting during engagement is something not to be ashamed of. Colangelo says that fighting and arguing can be part of any healthy relationship. It is important to manage it well. She advises that instead of using criticism, blame or personal attacks, it is important to communicate your feelings and thoughts in a respectful manner, using the ‘I’ language whenever you can. Listen to your partner when they bring up your concerns. Even if you disagree with their viewpoint, try to understand it.
Do your best to be the team you have become. Kati Morton (licensed marriage and family therapist) says, “You’re going to marry that person. That means you’ll be doing most things in your life together.” The Guide to Caring For Your Mental Health. “Having a shared message and working together as a team will ensure you are never separated.”
You may be so busy planning your wedding, but make it a point to spend some time with your partner. Diana Sadat, a couple counselor, says that while the wedding may be over, your marriage will last a long time. “Always make time for tea every evening and have a conversation about your day and current events without worrying about the wedding.
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Last but not least, remember why your said yes. Morton says, “Planning a marriage and dealing with family problems can cause us to forget why we’re getting married.” You can prevent this by turning off your phone at night, connecting with your fiance, and reminding them why you love them and why you chose to marry them.