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101 Questions to Ask Before You Get Engaged Paperback – June 1, 2004
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About the Author
H. Norman Wright is a well-respected Christian counselor who has helped thousands of people improve their relationships and deal with grief, tragedy, and other concerns. He helps couples bring vibrancy to their relationships through counseling, seminars, and more than 90 books, including Before You Say “I Do” and After You Say “I Do.” Norm also reveals insights for spiritual growth, great relationships, and success in devotionals that include Strong to the Core, Quiet Times for Every Parent, and Truly Devoted: What Dogs Teach Us About Life, Love, and Loyalty. Norm and his wife, Tess, enjoy their children, grandchildren, various pets, and fishing. www.hnormanwright.com
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I found this book accidentally, and it was a complete game changer. Because of the way the questions are asked, it forces you to talk about issues that may not usually arise when dating (or to talk about them at a deeper level that you might have avoided). And not just issues - hopes, dreams, expectations. Things that may or may not come out in pre-marital counseling. I discovered some dreams my now-FI has about marriage that it would have never occurred to me to ask about. And we have been able to face up to some potentially serious issues in a safe, hypothetical environment - which has allowed us to prepare for handling those issues when the stakes are higher. We are just beginning pre-marital counseling now, and, thanks to this book, we already feel like we have a really solid understanding of our strengths and challenges as a couple.
As another reviewer said, the intro wasn't that helpful for us. We skipped it and went straight for the questions.
Overall, this book can be a great tool if both people are on board. Because some of the questions get pretty deep - questions about control, family boundaries, reasons why someone would or wouldn't (yikes!) want to spend the rest of their life with you - the key to using this book effectively is having both people completely on board. If one person is more committed than the other or isn't really interested in answering the questions fully, I doubt you'll get much out of it.
The biggest benefit for us was using this book to establish a pattern of open, honest communication - even when it comes to uncomfortable topics. For that reason alone, I would recommend this book.
If you are thinking about getting engaged, buy this book.