It is a common tradition and popular culture amongst various climes across the world for people to date, court or be in a relationship first for a certain length of time before getting married – not so certain now, but surely, there is a period between when they meet and when they actually get married, for some it may be brief while for some, a bit longer; but during this period, the overall target is marriage.

Now there is a very thin line between being in a relationship with the prospect of getting married and practically wasting your time with someone. While most people consider a long relationship the ideal type, some however see it as walking on a tightrope, you can trip at any time.

A long relationship they say gives you the rare opportunity to really know what you are about delving into. A time to get fully acquainted with your supposed partner, get to know – their preferences, likes, dislikes, turn-on’s, turn-off’s, their friends and even family members; as these will certainly play a significant role in the determining the success of your marriage, if it eventually leads to that.

It is statistically proven that most persons in relationships usually tend to put up a not-so-true personality at the very first instance just to appear appealing to their partners, coming across as perfect, showing their good sides and traits whilst suppressing their bad sides as much as they can. But time they say reveals everything; this is what a lengthy relationship affords you – the opportunity to see your partner clearly under the bright light of time, their true colors, seeing them for who they really are, then you get to choose either to go ahead, if you think you can handle it or just call it quits if you think you can’t.

However some may argue that in contrast, short relationships brings precision and focus to the table. It gives no room for biting around the bush, playing around as long relationships affords. It gives ample time to explore other options if your current relationship isn’t showing any prospect; not to be tied down to one person for so long a time, then suddenly they wake up one day and decide to call it quits – they are no longer interested in the relationship anymore. This is the scare and situation most people dread thus, try to avoid.

Consequently, the question persists – how long is too long to date your fiancé or fiancée before getting married? How much time is necessary? Knowing you actually need to know who you intend getting married to at least 70 percent before marriage but at the same time, you don’t want to waste your time in a gamble that may not pay off. The scale is unevenly balanced, how long should a relationship last with marriage in mind, how long is outrageous.

Sampling opinions randomly from different persons on this issue, you will be surprised at what people really think

Femi – A married man with fifteen years of experience under his belt thinks six months is enough and proper to date or be in relationship before getting married. In his words “Six months is enough to decide if you want to spend the rest of your life with her. Anything more than that is a total waste of time, I met my wife in March and by September we were married.”

Dami – A spinster believes eight months is ideal, and anything exceeding that, she certainly won’t be a part of it. “I mean, if you’re serious about getting married, you can’t take a whole year of my life trying to know me first; for crying out loud, you’ll have more than enough time to do so after we get married!”

Angie – A newly married lady thinks three months is enough time for anyone with the intent of marriage to know what they want. “I particularly don’t fancy long relationships, it’s a colossal waste of time, a gamble no lady should make.

Victor – A bachelor, in contrary opinion believes two years is okay for relationships, as one really needs to know what they are going into. “Personally I won’t marry a lady I just got to in less than a year, it’s too risky, I won’t do it.”

Dayo – A married man with a dazzling perspective. Day thinks twenty-four hours is okay in knowing your wife and proceeding with marriage rites. “I am not a fan of fanfare and ceremonies and I certainly think dating is just a ceremonial trend.”

It is clear, therefore, that they are significantly different time ranges for dating for different people. As they say – different strokes for different folks. There is no clear-cut time as to how long a relationship should last before marriage; bearing in mind that a balance needs to be struck between, knowing your partner better and avoiding wasting your time. Well, it is more personal and emotional than it is scientific.

But if you should ask me of my opinion, I would say, follow your instincts, they are never wrong!


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