150 Questions To Ask Your Partner At Every Stage Of The Relationship

It’s seriously strange to think that some of the closest people in our lives were once completely unknown to us. Turning someone from a stranger to a life re-arranger takes a lot of time and work, but as I’m sure you’ve experienced, it’s truly one of the most wonderful and exciting parts of life. Human connection is one of our basic needs, after all. 
This is, of course, true for how we make friends, but also how we seek out potential romantic partners. Essentially, we meet and if we are intrigued enough, start that juicy process of slowly peeling away each other's layers until we know that person down to their very core. 
However, to keep this closeness and intimacy, the getting-to-know-you process should effectively never end. As the saying goes, the only constant is change. This is especially true when it comes to people and, therefore, relationships. One of my favourite quotes is: "Love doesn't just sit there like a stone, it has to be made, like bread; remade all the time, made new”.
On that note, here is a list of questions to ask your significant other to get to know them better, at any stage of your relationship.

When You Start Dating 

You like their vibe, but this person is still such a mystery that there are a billion questions to be asked. In this stage of a relationship, keep your questions light and fun — you’ll get to the heavier stuff later. You are just looking to see if you mesh, if your time together is enjoyable and hopefully discover a few similarities.
— What’s your go-to takeaway order?
— What dish do you cook best?
— Who is your best friend?
— What do you look for in a relationship?
— You win the lotto — $50 Million — what’s your plan for the first day?
— Who’s your favourite comedian?
— What’s your absolute favourite food?
— What other city or country would you like to try living in?
— What do you splurge on when you need to treat yourself?
— Are you passionate about anything?
— What does your typical Saturday look like?
— Do you like to exercise?
— What’s the worst date you’ve ever been on (and why was it so bad)?
— What are your bad habits?
— Do you drink or take any drugs regularly?
— What music did you listen to today?
— What’s the last movie or TV show that stuck with you?
— Are you a spender or a saver?
— Are you religious?
— What kind of relationship are you looking for?
— Do you like reading?

When You’re Getting A Little More Serious

Oooh la la. Things are going swimmingly thus far and you’ve established a connection and dash of trust, so it’s probably time to add a bit of depth into the conversation. You’re starting to get a little curious about each other's history and it’s time to find out if what you are both looking for aligns. 
— Are you close with your family?
— What’s the last thing that made you angry?
— What do you want to achieve in life?
— Do you like your job / career?
— What would you do differently if you had your time again?
— What do you want to change about yourself, if anything?
— Have you ever had your heart broken? Why did you break up?
— Have you taken a big risk that didn’t pay off?
— What are your relationship deal breakers?
— What are you looking for in a partner?
— What do you like when it comes to sex, and are there any no-gos?
— Do you like surprises?
— Do you still have feelings for a past love / Do you talk to any exes?
— Have you ever cheated on a partner or been cheated on?
— Do you have any fears?
— What’s something you want to improve on?
— Do you like celebrating your birthday?
— Tell me about your childhood
— How do you think you are different from five years ago?
— Where does your career fall in your list of priorities?

When Moving In Together 

It's on and it’s oh so exciting. This person is no longer a stranger but quite the opposite; someone you really trust and feel most comfortable and yourself with. Time to put the pressure on it! 
There’s no room for hiding here. You’re going to see the best and the worst of this person and their really odd habits that maybe they didn’t even know they had. You’ll learn quickly what’s important to this person in their living space. This is when you can get to know someone better than they know themselves. 
— What interior vibe do you want to go for?
— To you, is it more important to keep the living room or the bedroom clean?
— What foods do you like to always have in the house?
— How often can we continue to go on dates?
— Is marriage important to you?
— Do you cook regularly? How healthy do you like to keep the food?
— When and how often do you want alone time?
— Do you think we have longevity?
— What’s our secret code for when either of us wants to leave a party early?
— Do you have any chronic health problems I should be aware of accommodating when we live together?
— How much do you want to spend on rent?
— Do you like to have music playing at home?
— How do you like to spend a hangover day? What’s your hangover cure?
— How do you want to split costs?
— How do you like to be treated when you are feeling down?
— Do you have any trouble sleeping?
— How do you want to split housework?
— Do you want to set any boundaries at home?
— Are there any off limit drawers or cupboards?
— Do you want to do our clothes washing together or separate? Is it okay to mix colours?
— How do you pack the dishwasher?/ Is it important to you to wash up immediately?
— Do you want a pet?
— How do you like your eggs / coffee?
— How can we make a plan to spend enough quality time together, even when our schedules don’t match up?

When You Get Engaged 

Ding Ding! Last stop before there's no easy backing out of this. You’re about to commit to this person for the rest of your life so pretty much everything should be out on the table by this point. So, for the most part, you have the right to ask anything you feel you need to know before saying ‘I do’. Also, you are really starting to rely on each other now in new ways (for example, financially) if you haven’t already. So, it’s time to sort out the finer details and work out a strategy so there are no nasty surprises and no resentment builds.
— What’s the maximum or minimum time frame you want to be engaged for?
— Is there anything that you have been holding on to and want to get out in the open?
— Do you feel secure in this relationship?
— Have you ever come close or thought about cheating on me before?
— How much money do you want to save during our engagement time?
— What, if anything, worries you the most about us?
— Do you feel unconditionally loved by me?
— Is there anything you want to work on, address, ask or make clear before we get married?
— Do you want a prenup?
— Is time apart important to you?
— Is there anything you would like to see me improve? (This is also a chance to calmly discuss any issues you may have.)
— How much money do you want to spend on the wedding?
— How often do you want to go on a holiday?
— Will you take my last name?
— Why do you want to spend the rest of your life with me?
— Have your goals changed since we got together?
— How can I best show my love?
— What are your political stances / beliefs?
— Am I supporting you enough in the wedding planning?
— Do you want to have kids? If so, how many and in what time frame?
— How do you see our relationship changing when we are married?

When You Get Married 

You are now both different people from when you met, so communication is as important as ever as your goals and priorities are shifting. After all, the most successful relationships are those that champion independence and also being a team. You really depend on each other, it’s vital to know what’s important in a marriage to this person to keep that trust. 
— What debts do you have?
— What’s on your bucket list?
— Where do you need my support most in your life?
— What do you want out of life?
— What do you want to prioritise in our life together?
— Where do you want to be / how do you want to live at retirement age?
— What do you want to work towards?
— Do you feel treated enough? Am I meeting your needs?
— Which meal I made in the last year was your favourite?
— How often do you want to visit our parents?
— How often do you want to have sex?
— How can I encourage you toward your goals?
— What does being a good spouse look or feel like to you?
— Where is best to spend Christmas?
— Is there something I do that annoys or bothers you?
— Is there something I can take off your plate / help you with?
— Are we on track to still be in love in 20 years?
— Do you feel I am holding you back from anything?
— How often shall we check in on our relationship?
— How will we de-escalate an argument?
— What would us breaking up look like?

When You Start Thinking About Children 

This is a really big one. There are so many differing parenting beliefs and styles that so much should be worked out before you bring a baby into the world together. Making sure you are on the same page is vital to success. No playing around here!
— What’s your stance on gender reveals?
— When feels like a good time for you to have children?
— How many kids do you want?
— Are we strong enough as a couple to go through this and come out the other end?
— How do you anticipate this will affect us as a couple? What is ok to change and what is not ok to change about our relationship?
— How often should we make time for just us?
— Do twins run in your family?
— What’s your stance on sending kids to day care?
— What last name will our kids have?
— Who do we trust to watch our children when we want alone time?
— Do you feel ready for this?
— Do you want to raise your children religiously?
— What should our kids' relationship with technology look like?
— What do you want to do the same as to how you were raised?
— What do you want to do differently?
— Do you think it’s possible we would regret the decision to have kids?
— How will we co-parent? How will some duties be shared?
— What support would the pregnant party need?
— What time frame is too long without having sex?
— Do you want to “spoil” your child?
— Would you consider IVF?
— What kind of names do you like and dislike?
— How do you want to raise our kids? What values do you want to pass on to them?
— What does fair discipline look like to you?
— What kind of parent do you want to be? Helicopter? Hands-off?
— How will we pay for this? Shall we make a joint bank account?
— If we have difficulty conceiving, how will we manage the stress that will put on us as individuals, and as partners?

Questions To Revisit Every Year 

As much as you have become one, you are still individuals. Keep getting to know your spouse as their own person by continuing to date them and ask questions and check in on your relationship.
— Do you feel like you can rely on me?
— Is there anything lacking in your life?
— No relationship is perfect, what is stopping ours from being perfect?
— Are you still happy with where we are living?
— Do you feel supported by me / what areas do you feel like you need additional support in?
— Would you like to try something new?
— What’s been on your mind lately?
— Do you feel at peace? What’s stopping that?
— Are you happy with the way we are spending our money?
— Do you consider us friends too?
— Do we feel securely attached to each other?
— Is there anything that I've stopped doing that used to feel special?
— Do we have any wounds that need healing?
— What are your main stressors right now?
— Are you satisfied with our sex life?
— How can I be more present in our relationship?
Want more? Get Refinery29 Australia’s best stories delivered to your inbox each week. Sign up here!

More from Relationships