Can couples with very different value systems make a marriage work? How do we navigate the challenges that different upbringing poses? Perhaps you are a homebody. She loves parties and friends. You want to have children, and he doesn’t like kids. You are a spender and he’s the ultimate scrooge saver. These are examples of different value systems that are worth discussing with your partner. Alex and Grace talked about value systems in a marriage, in an FB Live Session over the weekend.
The discussion covered three key things:
1. Having self-awareness is the start.
You both need to define what your own values are and how you envision your marriage to be.
2. Make time to discuss which kind of “culture” you want for your marriage, with your partner.
It helps for each person to write down all the values that are important to that person. That way, it’s more clear where the similarities and differences are. Based on that, you can both discuss the shared values you want your marriage to be built around.
3. Take action.
If there are differences, really talk about it. Don’t just delay the conversation and hope that these issues would go away by itself. (It usually returns with a vengeance!) If you both discover that you have real conflict about it, ask yourself if it is negotiable or non-negotiable. If you cannot find common ground, or find it really hard to resolve differences, it’s a good time to involve a wise and trusted third-party. This could be your friends or a marriage counsellor.
Watch the video below to hear Alex and Grace share from their own experiences!
If you’d like to read about this topic further, this article on foryourmarriage.org provides a list of areas you can discuss with your partner when talking about common values.