4 major issues to consider when you decide to change someone for marriage.
So you have met this person that you like so much and you can’t stop thinking about this person. This is the person you wish to spend the rest of your life with but you have realized certain things about him/her that are red flags to you. It could be his or her beliefs, habits, addictions, lifestyle or character. Despite these warning signs, you still wish to take the plunge and see whether you can change this person for yourself. I won’t say it is not possible to change someone or for someone to genuinely change for love. But I want to remind you about certain realities and likelihoods you should be wary of when going on the mission to change someone.
If the person changes for you, it is good but not enough. If the person changes to please you so you can accept him or her, it is good but it is just not enough. True change or repentance comes when the person accepts that he or she is in the wrong and for that reason is willing and ready to change to become a better person for him or herself. Before one can truly love and take care of others, one must first learn to love and take care of him or herself. The change must first be for himself or herself and not for you. You then become a beneficiary of that aura of love and positivity the person has learnt to develop and carry around him or her.
Thus, here are four major issues to consider before you decide to change someone for marriage.
1. You are going to be responsible for their behaviour.
You are the reason the person is changing. The person changed for you but not for himself or herself. His or her motivation to remain a changed person or not is largely going to depend on you and how you treat him or her. So, what you are likely to find yourself doing in the relationship is man-management. And I don’t think you can be conscious to do that for the rest of your life. Because you also have a life to live as an individual. You would like to be free and be yourself. You would like to have some inner peace without the fear of the person going back to his or her old ways.
2. What are the person’s expectations for coming into the marriage or relationship?
People walk into marriages with expectations. If things do not turn out to be what he or she expected, that could cause the person to do a U-turn on his or her attitude or promise to change. Because the person did not change willingly and truly, that old ways did not die in the person but was only asleep. The old habits, lifestyle and addictions were only latent or dormant inside the person. They were lurking somewhere within, waiting to erupt by a trigger. The major reasons why people go back to their old habits are frustrations, depressions, disappointments and hopelessness. Your inability to meet the person’s expectations could result in the person going back to the fleshpots of Egypt and other forms of escapism.
3. Feelings can change, physical attraction will fade, material things don’t last.
Yes, a person may appear to have changed because of his or her feelings for you and attraction towards you. Underneath such change is deep-rooted selfishness and lust. It is all about the person wanting to satisfy his or her emotional and material needs. So ask yourself, what if the feelings change? What if whatever thing that made the person attracted to you changes? If it was material things the person wanted, what happens when the person gets them and becomes bored with them over time? Will this person remain a changed person or he or she will go back to his or her default nature since he or she has no reason or motivation to keep acting? This happens in a lot of marriages and we say the person has changed.
4. Emotional blackmailing
This person knows how much you love him or her. And the person also knows what you hate and don’t like. Sometimes, people use the dislikes of their partners as a revenge weapon against them when they feel offended by them. So, the situation in the relationship turns out to be like, so far as you are willing to do what I want to make me happy, I am willing to be the kind of person you want. The person may not tell you directly but that’s how things are going to be. And because you are afraid he or she may go back to his or her previous attitude or lifestyle, you begin to make a lot of concessions to this person. And the person ends up using your feelings and deep love for him or her to manipulate and control your emotions and behaviour.
Finally, as I said in the beginning, a person can change genuinely. What I have just shared with you are things you should have at the back of your mind when you want to change someone for marriage. I believe being aware of such possibilities will help you do the proper due diligence so you can be more certain and convinced in your decisions about this person. Remember, there is no better change in the life of a person than the change that is carried out by the workings of the Holy Spirit.