Finding the right person to marry is a difficult process, but faculty and students shared points on how to know if you have found that significant other, from not being able to see yourself with someone else to having honest dialogue with one another.
Dr. Marcus Martin, a religion professor, highlighted a few of his tips in a Powerpoint he made:
“When you find a man/woman who meets these characteristics:
You can’t stop thinking about him/her
You want to have him/her at your side in all significant occasions for the rest of your life
You have tastes, preferences, and personal goals that are compatible or that complement his/hers
You don’t care to date any other man/woman besides him/her
You believe he/she would be an excellent father/mother to your future children
You think that without him/her at your side eternity would not be “celestial” for you. And, most importantly:
He/she feels the same way (items 1-6) about you.”
Farina McCarthy Stonex, a counselor at the Counseling Center:
“When choosing to be serious about marriage, you need to give yourself sufficient time to get to know the person. That means to date, go out and talk about the things that are important to you both, and then see how compatible you are together, how you resolve issues with each other.”
She said one of the most common things that gets marriages into trouble is finance. Students who are serious about marriage should be transparent about how much they have with each other, she recommended, and how both of them plan to work things out financially. She also mentioned it is important to see the way he or she spends money.
She added working out together is important.
Being prayerful and getting some confirmations from the Lord is important to make decisions for eternal marriage, she continued.
Some of the questions she suggested students might want to ask:
Does he/she have integrity?
Does he/she know how to work?
Is he/she willing to give and take?
Is he/she honest with you?
Stonex said if a person is willing to take time or show interest in things a partner is doing that the person has never showed interest in doing previously, that is a good sign.
She said it’s important to look for things that last forever instead of looking for only temporal or changeable things.
“I had a friend who said he never would marry someone who couldn’t do ballroom dance. He just loved ballroom dancing. What happened [was] he met a girl, she was just a really neat girl, he started dating her, she was just the right person or him. But she couldn’t dance one step. But he married and loved her because he found out it was more important to have someone he could rely on. Those became much more important than ballroom dancing,” she said.
She added, “If you have some set things on your mind about what you have to have in marriage, they are usually superficial and not important.”
She said people come to a conclusion based on what matters most to their lives.
From her experience, she said, “I recall when I met my husband he had a weird color combination on, and I thought, ‘Oh my gosh.’ But, I was able to look beyond that because he was such a nice person. That became irrelevant to me. And I was smart enough to know that when I will marry, I can change his dress.” She added, “What’s going to last is the inside stuff.”
Holly Lee, an alumni from Hong Kong who majored in social work, and Usik Son, a senior from South Korea majoring information technology, were in a relationship for four years until they got engaged.
They got to know each other while working at the Aloha Luau at the Polynesian Cultural Center together.
Lee said his diligence attracted her. Son said he was attracted to her because, “She was just so pretty.”
One day, when Lee accidentally dropped a customer’s belonging in the dumpster in her workplace, Son was willing to dive into it and pick it up on behalf of her.
Son also felt described feeling kindness from Lee’s actions. He said when his wisdom teeth were in pain, she cooked for him and fed him.
After Son asked Lee out on a date to Subway, they got to know each other on a deeper level from talking about their school life and future.
After Lee graduated, she went back to Hong Kong to work as a bank teller, whereas Son went to do two years of military service in South Korea.
At that time, Son asked for a break up so she could go out with other guys. However, Lee rejected and said she was going to wait for him until his return.
Lee said even though she saw handsome guys in Hong Kong, Son’s kindness and what he had done for her over the previous two years in Hawaii had made her want to stay with him. Lee recalled thinking to herself, “He is the one I’m going to choose.”
Reflecting on the journey they took together, Son said he went to the temple and prayed about their relationship, just like he had before asking her out on a first date and after starting their relationship. He said he felt a strong, positive, and clear feeling about the path he was going to take with her.
Lee said, “There is no perfect person, but a suitable person.” Son said, “Heavenly Father has prepared someone ‘around’ me.”