I recently read this article by ELEANOR STANFORD in the New York Times, called 13 Questions to Ask Before Getting Married. I found the article to be thoughtful and offering of interesting advice to couples considering marriage. However, as a Gottman Method Couples Therapist I was left with the feeling that something was missing (such as any mention of the most accomplished couples relationship researcher in the history of the planet, Dr. John M. Gottman).
The main piece of Gottman wisdom that I think prospective marital partners need to consider should be a back drop to all of these questions. Specifically, given that 69% of the problems you will face in this relationship will be perpetual, make sure to choose a partner with a set of problems with which you can live. Additionally, a couple of other questions are important to consider, but can't be simply asked. These are: "Will you have my back when things get difficult?" and "Can we find a way to treat each other with respect and to keep positivity in our relationship even when we are in conflict?"
On the other hand, the article still has 13 interesting questions. So I encourage couples to read it. I also encourage couples to keep Gottman's research-based perspective in mind when asking these questions.
Happy New Year, Michael Basta, LCSW, Sonoma Couples Workshops