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Why marriage aspirants should take courtship more seriously – UG Christian News

By Derrick Kibbedi 

The foundation of a good marriage starts with the uncomfortable conversation you have during courtship. In life, I have come to understand that we have two categories of people. First off is the kind that goes through a lengthy courtship, and experiences a night mare of marriage. The other is the kind that goes through a shorter courtship and remarkably experiences a “happily ever after” 

In courtship, most people prefer having fun. Most times, they avoid anything that invades their good time. This is the reason why once they get married, the term “he or she has changed” starts to surface. It’s because you did not have time for real issues. 

The time you had was for hanging out, and as a result, failed to lay down the basics and framers of your marriage. For example, you didn’t have time to visit and relate with each other’s family so as to establish friendship. You did not get time to know what your partner can do or learn some of their house keeping strength and weaknesses.

These are real issues that you’re going to confront all your life time and yet you’ve not given them the attention they deserve. Marriage does not succeed on flatteries instead it does survive upon the foundation of the reality. Everyone in courtship should step out to be real, ask real questions, confront real challenges and avoid the dictates of silver screen producers. 

 In my opinion, it’s better to have a tough time in courtship and have the best marriage than to have a honeymoon courtship and have a terrible marriage. Courtship, you can afford to lose, but marriage you can’t. 

Someone said, “if you want to ride a horse, learn from the untamed so that by the time you get to the tamed one, it’s just easier.” I believe in part that this should be part of the road to marriage. Couples should have some untamed experiences. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case because while in courtship everyone is calm and it looks like the two of you are going to be like that for ever. No, sometimes the road gets rough and tough.

Be yourself during courtship, because this will help you attend to real issues without hesitation. The uncomfortable conversation you have during courtship can generate the comfort you need in marriage – and to me this is a plus.  

Don’t get stuck in outings, try to learn and exercise yourselves on how you’ll live together. For instance, self-control plays a big role in relationship success. Furthermore, is your partner a team player? Is he/she responsible enough. These attributes can help you understand if your partner can manage the home. 

I was in courtship for 6 years to the point that family was getting worried. One of my brothers told me, ” you’re going to get tired of each, get married,” and another warned me, “if you ever break that girl’s heart I will not spare you.” But during this time, we went through several experiences. My fiancé who is my wife now, realized how good I was at cooking to the point that she could avoid it or make constant consultations during her cooking. Wisdom taught me to encourage her to be autonomous in the kitchen. This has made two best cooks in our family. I also learned that I am the public relations officer of my house because she speaks less while outside and more when inside, and because of this she listens more and always corrects me since she has time to look at the audience more critically and creatively. 

We must all understand that despite of my two experiences mentioned above it does not come with comfort, sometime we had to quarrel about our weaknesses and also feel frustrated by the “better than me” attitude but we insist on being who we really are. 

My wife is extremely organized and I learned this while in courtship, she could visit my ‘kafunda’, which means ‘small place’ in Luganda, while I was away and leave a note behind with instructions on where she placed what and where I should keep what after use. This in the beginning was stressful, but up-to-date she does it. I have learnt putting up with her because it makes both of us better. 

One blind leading the other will tell you, “don’t accept him or her to do that” but if that person was designed and programmed by God to be like he or she is, just embrace the difference. 

Happy Marriages are not made by compatibility. Happy marriage is about two different persons, who are not compatible, but accept the incompatibility and work on it till they eventually come to oneness.

Derrick Kibbedi is a relationship counselor, married and blessed with four children.

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