You and your partner should go through the five-step process
outlined in this unit to explore and develop a shared understanding
of marriage. To begin the process, each of you should individually
write down the answers to questions raised in this unit (Step 1).
As you answer each of these questions, also write down how you
came to adopt these beliefs or values (Step 2). Each of you should
initially do steps one and two by yourself without consulting your
partner. After both of you have completed these steps, get together
with your partner to share your answers (Step 3). After sharing
each other's answers, map out the areas where your responses seem
very similar, and also the areas where there seems to be disagreement
(Step 4). For areas of disagreement, be sure to consider possible
areas of commonality. Finally, discuss with your partner which
of the areas of agreement and disagreement are most significant
to you (Step 5). Are the differences minor and easy to live
with, or are some of the differences major and potentially problematic?
If there are significant areas of disagreement, consider using
the communication and problem-solving skills to clarify and
perhaps renegotiate expectations.
- Write down the vows that you would like to say to your partner.