21 Questions for a Prospective Wife

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Given the nature of the case, these are not necessarily questions that someone might ever get to ask. A young man is coming to a father because he knows his own intentions, and he is inviting questions. He should be surprised if the young lady’s father had no questions. He is asking to be asked; he is asking to be examined. If the father asked him something, and the young man said, “Mind your own business,” there is no need to wonder too long about why his suit was denied. But a young lady who is minding her own business is under no obligation whatever to answer any questions that a young man might want to have the answers to. She is especially under no obligation to answer questions like the ones below.

At the same time, these are questions that would be wise for a young man to keep in mind. Some of them can be answered simply by living in the same community with a young lady, some might be known because the families involved are close friends, some might be legitimately inferred from what is generally known, and so on. Some of the questions are very similar to the questions asked of a young male suitor, with changes from second person to third person because of the nature of the case. And some of the questions are completely different.

1. What is her spiritual background? What was her church upbringing like? Did she ever go through a period of spiritual rebellion?

2. When was the last time she read through the entire Bible? The New Testament?

3. Does she attend worship every Lord’s Day?

4. What was her upbringing like? Did she grow up in a spiritually healthy family? If there was trouble in the home, is she carrying a significant amount of baggage?

5. Does she have a close relationship with her dad? With her mom?

6. Does she look up to and respect her father? Does respect come easily to her because she has a high view of her father’s integrity? Is she secure?

7. Ten years from now, will she think of you in the same respectful way she thinks of her father?

8. Ten years from now, when she is a lot more like her mother, will you take this as a good thing or a bad thing?

9. What is her relationship like with her brothers and sisters?

10. Is she a hard worker? Does she help her mother with the tasks around the house cheerfully? Are necessary chores a source of conflict and quarreling in the home?

11. Not that you should ever have seen it, but what does her bedroom look like? Is it kept up? Decorated nicely? Or is she trying to start a duplication of Edith Schaeffer’s ministry . . . D’bris?

12. Does she dress with self-respect and with due respect for others? Do you know more than you ought to about what kind of body she has? Does the whole church congregation know more about what kind of body she has than they ever requested to know? If she dresses provocatively and immodestly (particularly in church contexts), do you understand that this is more probably a manifestation of radical insecurity than it is a manifestation of a lonely sex kitten desperately wanting to make love to a dope like you?

13. Is she cheerful and pleasant in her disposition?

14. Does she love the domestic arts? Is she the kind of person that would make any home that she managed a place where others love to be? In decorating, in cooking, in hospitality . . . is she dedicated to them out of love for God and others?

15. Does she love kids? Does she see child-bearing and child-rearing as a high privilege and calling, or does she see that kind of thing as beneath her? Has feminism gotten to her at all? In this make sure you distinguish feminism getting to her, and irritating machismo types getting to her.

16. What was her GPA in college? Does she believe that women have brains and are called by God to use them? Given that your sons will probably be educated to the same level as their mother, are you willing for that? Whether you intend to homeschool or not, is she educated in such a way that this would be a possibility?

17. Is she financially responsible? Does she shop responsibly? Does she have any problems with credit cards?

18. Is she accustomed to live at a level that you can provide? How would she take it if marriage meant a lower standard of living, even if only for a time?

19. What is the history of her relationship/s with guys? Non-existent? Serial crack-ups? One major devastation three years ago?

20. Does she have any kind of troubled sexual history? Molested when a girl? A patten of promiscuity? This would include a legalistic home that is particularly good at inculcating hang-ups. Paranoid frigidity is not the same thing as secure virginity.

21. Is she attractive to you? Is she attractive for the right reasons and in the right way? In the charm is deceitful department, is her attractiveness driven by an inner beauty and grace? In the anti-gnostic department, do you find yourself wanting to kiss the back of her neck more than you really ought to at this stage of the relationship?

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