Whom not to marry

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I don't always 100% agree with everything Maureen Dowd says, but I am a religious reader of her column, and loved this recent Op-Ed piece she wrote about how against the backdrop of celebrity divorce, us plebians choosing wisely when it comes to our marriage partners is pretty damn solid advice. To learn more about the subject, she consulted an expert: Father Pat Connor, a 70-year old Catholic priest who has given a lecture called "Whom Not to Marry" to audiences of teenagers for the past 40 years. An expert indeed.

His advice, in summary:

"'Never marry a man who has no friends,' he starts. 'This usually means that he will be incapable of the intimacy that marriage demands.'"

Consider your financial compatibility. "Most marriages that founder do so because of money - she's thrifty, he's on his 10th credit card."

"Steer clear of someone whose life you can run, who never makes demands counter to yours. It's good to have a doormat in the home, but not if it's your husband."

"Is he overly attached to his mother and her mythical apron strings? When he wants to make a decision, say, about where you should go on your honeymoon, he doesn't consult you, he consults his mother. (I've known cases where the mother accompanies the couple on their honeymoon!)"

A sense of humor "covers a multitude of sins."

You will never change him, so don't go into it thinking you will be able to: "People are the same after marriage as before, only more so."

Most importantly, apply basic common sense when you're evaluating your partner's personality. "Does he possess those character traits that add up to a good human being - the willingness to forgive, praise, be courteous? Or is he inclined to be a fibber, to fits of rage, to be a control freak, to be envious of you, to be secretive?"

For the full list of considerations, read the rest of the article here. What would you add to this list?