Pre-Commitment Stage: Marriage

Jasbina Ahluwalia asks Dr. Helen Fisher: Absolutely. You have Google as a search engine. What you place in there determines what you get. Garbage in, garbage out. The question dictates the quality of the answers.

Because there is so much variation in different life stages, a lot of our audience is in their 20s and 30s, looking for marriage for the first time.

What are your top three tips to singles in that age range looking for a life partner?



Dr. Helen Fisher

What’s interesting about today is that we have what I call a huge pre-commitment stage before tying the knot.

Pre-Commitment Stage: 100 Years Ago

  • One hundred years ago, you met someone at church.
  • You swung on the porch swing before Sunday lunch.
  • After getting to know someone very briefly, you married them.


These days, it is quite the reverse.


Pre-Commitment Stage: Get To Know The Person

What people are doing is really getting to know the person before they tie the knot.

In one study, they asked people living together why they hadn’t married yet and 67% said that they were terrified of the legal and emotional issues surrounding divorce.


Pre-Commitment Stage: New Norm

What I think the young are doing now is going through this huge pre-commitment stage.

  • They’re starting with a one-night stand.
  • If they like the person, they’ll see them again.
  • Then they move very cautiously into friends with benefits.
  • Then they move very cautiously into living together before they marry.


I think a lot of Americans think that this is irresponsible. I’m not advocating it but I think that it’s caution.


Pre-Commitment Stage: Happier Marriages

These days, people want to know everything about their partner before they tie the knot.

I think that is going to lead to happier marriages.


Pre-Commitment Stage: Re-Marry?

In one questionnaire that I did with of married people, I asked, “Would you remarry the person that you’re currently married to?”

Eight-one percent said yes.


Pre-Commitment Stage: Evolution

That’s a lot of people. I think, with more and more people marrying later and spending a long time with someone before they marry, we’re going to move into a generation of happier relationships.

  • They know who this person is.
  • They’re marrying later.
  • They have more tools to keep it together.


Pre-Commitment Stage: Change in Women

Women are so much more interesting than they used to be. We’re educated now. We have a lot of our own financial stability.

I think we’re moving in a very optimistic direction.


Tell Us:

Did you experience the pre-commitment stage in your marriage? Tell us how long you dated your spouse before marrying them in the comments section below.


The above is an excerpt from Jasbina’s interview with Dr. Helen Fisher.

Listen to the entire interview on: Intersections Match Talk Radio – Jasbina’s Lifestyle Show

Listen to the entire interview on Blog Talk Radio: NetIP Spotlight- Live Your Potential

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Listen to the entire interview on iTunes