Love is a beautiful thing that comes in all shapes, sizes, and ways. And while love is the foundation of marriage, most people understand that there are lots of other components needed like trust, similar values, and compatibility to truly endure the test of time.
That being said, a consideration that is often overlooked or swept under the table prior to getting married is the medical history and physical health of your partner and their family. These factors can play a major role in your future life together, especially if you plan on having children.
A happy, healthy sex life is important for all relationships as well as an open dialogue about your sexual past. It’s beneficial to get tested together for sexually transmitted diseases (STD) and talk about anything you or your partner may have acquired before getting together.
This becomes essential if one of you have contracted an incurable STD, such as HIV or herpes. These lifelong viruses don’t have to be deal breakers, but they can greatly alter your sex life, especially since extra precautions might be needed in the bedroom.
Genetics are playing a larger role in families than ever before. Knowing your family history for disease as well as your partner’s can provide a crystal ball to the future of your own family.
For instance, if you know your family has a history of heart disease, you’d probably try to implement healthy life choices to minimize your chance of heart attack. With your partner’s understanding and cooperation, this kind of lifestyle will be easier to achieve.
For those planning to have children, knowing your genetic predispositions can give you a helpful assurance into the life of your child. Carrier testing prior to getting pregnant can tell you if you or your partner have genetic mutations which can lead to life altering diseases for your baby such as cystic fibrosis and sickle cell anemia. However, even if you’re at risk, having the recessive mutation is not a guarantee that it will be passed along to your kids.
Unfortunately, medical considerations are rarely a fun or sexy topic to talk about when you’re romantically involved. But for those wanting to tie the knot, knowing your physical health and history can contribute to a long, happy life together.
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