Some important conversations are hard for people to initiate. For example, it can be hard to talk with your parents about their declining health or their estate plan even if you know they need to put their wishes in writing.
It will also likely be uncomfortable for you to discuss a prenuptial agreement with your romantic partner if you have recently gotten engaged. However hard it may be to discuss, it is still an important conversation to have. Prenuptial agreements have become common in middle-class marriages, especially when people remarry after a divorce.
If you have children, substantial assets or major debts, a prenuptial agreement can help protect you and your fiance. How can you broach the topic without affecting how your fiance views your commitment to the relationship?
Approach it as a pragmatic way to reduce your risks
You want to stay married for the rest of your life. You likely feel committed to your fiance or you would not have gotten engaged with them. However, most couples expect that their marriages will succeed, and yet the divorce rate still hovers around 50%.
Although the demographics of who divorces and when has shifted, there’s still no question that a significant number of marriages will ultimately end in divorce. It’s impossible to know now exactly how you will change as you continue to age or what complications life will send to challenge your relationship.
Given that you shouldn’t ignore a risk that could be as high as 50%, it makes sense to address the possibility of divorce now while you have an amicable relationship. That way, if the divorce does occur, it can be affordable and efficient rather than a bitter battle when your relationship is at its worst.
Highlight how you have the option of protecting yourselves
An enforceable contract should offer something of considerable value to both parties. You don’t just want a prenuptial agreement to protect your inheritance or your professional practice in case you divorce.
You also want your spouse to feel comfortable and to have protections in the contract. They might want to reaffirm that your student loans will remain your separate debts or impose their own conditions on the marriage or your divorce in the prenuptial agreement.