relationship questions

Important Relationship Questions Every Couple Should Address Before Getting Serious

When entering into a new relationship, it’s easy to get distracted by everything you like about the person you are dating. But before you get to the point where the relationship starts to get more serious, you should ask some core relationship questions. Leaving these unaddressed could lead to more significant issues down the road.

The goal is to ensure that you and your partner are on the same page, or have an understanding when it comes to big life issues that often drive people apart.

First, Understand The Point Of The Conversation

You don’t need to 100% agree with one another. The point is to ensure that the way the other person thinks or approaches an issue is not a deal breaker for you.

According to my therapist, couples in healthy relationships usually disagree 60-70% of the time. And that’s a healthy relationship! The more important thing is how you resolve the disagreement. Your potential partner may disagree with what you say and vice versa, but if you can resolve it, you know you can move forward. If you can’t resolve it, that’s the problem.

One of the biggest problems with dating is that we often stay with people longer than we should. This is partly due to not having important conversations, ignoring key differences, or assuming that time will help sort things out. However, it pays to be intentional about getting to know someone and to do it sooner than later. Use what you learn to make an informed decision about whether staying with them is a good idea.

Reminder: It’s Not Just About Marriage

Even if you are not interested in getting married at some point, that doesn’t mean these questions and discussions aren’t helpful. For any serious relationship to succeed, there must be communication and conflict resolution. The key part is knowing where you stand on important issues, which can create the most problems between two individuals.

The Most Important Relationship Questions to Ask Your Partner

While I’m not a relationship expert, I have been through my fair share of dates and have had these conversations numerous times.

1 – Do You Want To Have Kids?

Some people know exactly what they want, and others are on the fence. It’s important to ask yourself this question too. How you feel about kids will help you determine if you agree with your date.

2 – Are You Religious?

Religion can be tricky. You don’t necessarily have to agree with your partner 100% for things to work, but they might have a perspective you cannot accept or understand.

The idea here is to understand where you each stand and if you can accept each other’s differences. On top of that, if there are kids, can you agree on how religion will play a part there?

3 – Is Marriage Something You Want?

It might seem weird to talk about marriage early in a relationship. But you aren’t asking if the person will marry you (yet). Before you can reach that stage you need to know how you each feel about this significant life event.

Maybe you are passionate about getting married and having a big wedding. But your partner is vehemently against getting married. Marriage may or may not be a deal breaker, but it should provide useful insight into how the future might look and if this could be a problem.

4 – What’s Your Ideal Place To Live, Or Lifestyle?

Maybe their dream is to live on a farm. Or live in a big city without a car. You don’t have to have all of this figured out or set in stone, but hearing what your partner says can be enlightening.

Plus, you can talk about preferences and ideals and see if there’s room for compromise in what you each want.

5 – What Is Your Philosophy Around Money?

Finances can be an area where couples struggle, and is often the most cited money-related reason for a breakup.

If one of you is a spender and the other is a saver, you can use that to your advantage in balancing each other out. If both of you are spenders, you will want to think about how to pursue your financial goals together.

This discussion is also an excellent opportunity to see if they know anything about financial independence, whether they maintain a budget, how much they have saved, etc.

6 – Do You Have Any Debts?

In any serious relationship, couples will end up sharing financial burdens of living together or being together. Debts on any side can add to the burden.

Are there massive student loans? Or did they rack up large amounts of credit card debt and have to work a second job to make extra money to cover it? Understand the situation fully before going further!

7 – What Are Your Dreams and Aspirations?

Similar to the previous relationship questions, the idea is to get to know your partner on a deeper level. If they had full flexibility with their time, what would they do? Do they like to spend a ton of time outdoors? Do they love to travel?

Apply this to questions about their career. Career changes can often affect lifestyle, finances, and the amount of time you’re able to spend together. This question can help you understand how ambitious (or not) your partner is, and you can figure out if it’s something you can live with.

Other Relationship Questions That Are Essential to Ask

The prior questions are must-ask for any relationship to move forward. I would recommend you ask those early and approach them in an unbiased way so you can genuinely just get to know the person.

The questions that follow are also key to understanding your partner and the experiences that formed them:

  1. What was your childhood like?
  2. What was/is your relationship with your family?
  3. Do you have siblings? How many?
  4. Have you ever been married/engaged before?
  5. Have you ever cheated on a partner? Or have you been cheated on?
  6. Where did you go to school?
  7. When was your last long-term relationship?
  8. What would you do if you could do any job in the world without worrying about money?
  9. Do you have pets? Or what is your preferred pet if you could have one?
  10. Do you do smoke/do drugs/drink, or have you ever in the past?
  11. Have you ever been arrested or gotten in trouble with the law?
  12. What was the last book you read?
  13. What is your favorite movie? Movie genre?
  14. What type of music do you listen to?
  15. Do you know any languages?
  16. Do you have any allergies?
  17. If you had all the money in the world, how would you spend it?
  18. Has you or anyone in your family been diagnosed/dealt with a chronic illness?
  19. Do you take any prescription medications?
  20. What is your number one deal breaker when dating?
  21. How do you show affection? How do you receive affection?
  22. When you travel, what’s your favorite kind of trip? (e.g., camping, the beach, city stays)
  23. What are your expectations from a partner regarding intimacy?

It’s a Team Effort

A true life partner is not someone who succumbs to everything you want. Rather, you want someone who shares the same life philosophy with you and is willing to compromise for the sake of the relationship.

Asking thought-provoking questions can help you really get to know the person you’re with and identify any possible red flags early; if you realize you’re on the same page, these questions can result in feeling closer and more connected to your partner.

Each of Us Learns More About Ourselves Over Time

We all change as we grow and gain more life experience. One answer today may be different later. So long as you understand and make room for each other, you can grow together.

This growth is part of what happens with a healthy relationship. Your journey together is all about figuring things out!

Questions Make You Stronger

Open and honest discussions with your significant other can also help you become the best version of yourself. Keeping an open mind to your partner’s views allows you to learn more about your preferences while teaching you new things at the same time.

Sometimes what we may think are dealbreakers may not be when we’re actually talking to someone and hearing their life story. A person with a rough past may be doing everything possible for a better future. Someone who has lived a privileged life may be struggling alone now.

Regardless of the outcome of these conversations, it’s important to remember to keep an open mind and not to judge.

Final Thoughts

These relationship questions are an excellent starting point when dating and learning about a potential partner. Don’t be afraid to go deep and ask the hard stuff. Life is bound to bring bumps in the road, and you need to know that your teammate will be by your side.

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