Pre-nuptial Agreements

Wed, Oct 14, 2009


In your typical wedding vow there will be a line that goes something like “I take you for better or worse, for richer or poorer, ‘til death do us part.” The wedding usually ends with some kind of proclamation that the two people who got married have now become one. The couple should commit to loving each other as much as they can for as long as they live. That’s what I believed in when I got married and that’s still what I believe in today.

People are supposed to marry to share themselves with another person whom they consider to be someone they can grow old with. They are supposed to share their lives, work on their differences, build a family, and try to expand their properties with the idea that they are doing all of this to make their relationship stronger.

Now, let’s tie this to the idea of a pre-nuptial agreement. Pre-nuptials are agreements that two people make before they get married. They indicate that if they separate, certain assets, such as property or monetary support, will be due to each other. The idea behind it is to lessen the hassle experienced during a separation. Thus, the act of getting such an agreement already entertains the idea of separation even before the union has actually begun. Why even continue with the marriage then?

All the doubt and worry

People may go and say that they are just being realistic, that statistics point to high rates of separation, and so, it’s best to safeguard your investments. I think that this “realistic” notion is actually what is causing the separation between couples. It is already given. People can just get married and get divorced without a hassle. It’s easy. It’s too easy. Marriage itself is becoming nothing more than a ride in the park–something to get on and enjoy for a while, get off to try others, and get on again when you feel like it. Yes, you get to lose a bit of money for the tickets, you may even feel a little nauseated for a while because of the twists and turns, but it’s not enough to stop you from going back for more. More and more people are adopting this idea.

Being realistic is now synonymous with being cynical. Who can blame people for being like this? They may have come from broken families, or they may have experienced bitter relationships in the past. But I think it’s high time for everyone to move on and start to expect something better, to start holding back for something really worthwhile. Otherwise there’s just no point in getting married.

Now, if you can’t consider that something like true and endless love is actually possible, in my opinion it would be best to opt not to get married. Lack of trust, implicit in a pre-nup, is the first stumbling block you will usually encounter in a relationship anyway. Going through with the whole marriage thing after already demonstrating a lack of trust would make it seem like nothing more than a charade.

I think that marriage is a calling. It’s not for everyone. I know a lot of single and happy people. They have found out that they are meant to do certain other things, like helping people or fighting for a cause. Other things that bring them more joy than the idea of having a life partner does. There’s no need for you to allow yourself to be bullied by well-meaning people into following certain social expectations, such as having to be with someone by a particular age. The number of dissolved marriages already goes to show that some societal norms are not really people-friendly.

In the end, however, you and your soon-to-be spouse will have to be the one to make the decision of whether or not to enter in a pre-nup. Before you say your “I DOs” though, just make sure you really know what’s at stake. It’s not just your property, but also your future.

Are you really willing to give your all to that person? How much are you willing to risk? For firm believers of love such as me, an answer of anything short of everything should not be enough. Remember your values, find out what you really want, and stick to what you know inside you to be right. Live in love, love to live.

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