Honey, Sign on the Dotted Line

With another Valentine’s Day behind us, where do we go from here? For some, to the negotiating table.

“Maybe having a legally-bound marriage isn’t something that you’re interested in, but I think considering a contract to help keep your goals in place and your expectations reasonable is a good idea,” advises Dr. Viviana Coles, a doctor of marriage and family therapy at Houston Relationship Therapy.

It’s a thing now. Relationship contracts.

Couples determine for themselves what areas they want covered. For some it’s finances, for others it’s how long house guests are welcome or who takes out the trash. What are the consequences for leaving a toilet seat up? What if someone cheats?

“The terms of it may not be very romantic, they may be more practical, so you need to think more about the business part of a relationship,” says Dr. Coles, known as the Houston Love Doc. It guarantees both partners have a seat at the table, which isn’t always the case.

Happily ever after should not be left to chance.

“The other thing you want to consider is what the expiration deadline should be, because as with any contract, it shouldn’t be open-ended,” suggests Dr. Coles, with a recommendation of two years.

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