When many people think of pre-marital counseling, they envision meeting with their priest, pastor or clergy member prior to getting married. These meetings usually involve discussing the spiritual component of the marriage and may only include on or two meetings. Although there is definitely value to this sort of counseling, pre-marital counseling with a therapist can offer something different. Meeting with a licensed therapist can assist you in preparing for your marriage by providing you with skills to deal with marital issues.
Many people spend a lot of time, energy and money preparing for their wedding. Sadly, most people don’t put nearly as much energy into preparing for their marriage. Marriage preparation requires careful attention to detail and a therapist can help you through this process. A therapist can also teach you skills that can prevent marital problems and help you address issues as they arise.
Pre-marital counseling assists you determining areas where you are compatible. It can also help you identify areas where you are not compatible. Some of these areas just require some extra attention. Other areas may help you see potential consequences of marrying someone you are not compatible with.
For example, if you want children and your partner doesn’t, how do you plan to handle this? Sadly, many people go ahead and marry a person who doesn’t have the same desires about children. Both people are not going to be able to get their needs met if they remain together.
A counselor can assist you with identifying your goals. It is important to recognize your individual goals and determine what will happen to these goals once you are married. For example, do you hope to further your education? It is also important to set goals together as a couple. Perhaps you would love to own your own business together eventually. Determining how you can help one another meet your goals is important.
Pre-marital counseling can teach you effective communication skills. Learning how to identify strategies to effectively share your feelings and express your concerns can be helpful. It can also teach you how to listen to your partner. Much marital discord centers around communication problems. Learning these skills prior to becoming married can help you prevent communication problems.
Pre-marital counseling can also help you to identify how to get your needs met. How will you approach your partner when you are not getting your needs met? What are you willing to do to meet your partner’s needs? Often, people make promises while they are dating about what they are willing to do but once married, these things are not always possible. Pre-marital counseling can help address these issues that are likely to arise.
Counseling can help address other common marital problems such as differences in values about money, parenting, and household duties. It can also address sexual issues and intimacy problems. It can help you learn to prevent problems before they start. Learning about your expectations and your partner’s expectations before getting married is important. It can help you clarify your roles as well as help you to recognize differences in your values.
Pre-marital counseling can help you strengthen your relationship. Learning about yourselves and your relationship can help you to enter the marriage as a stronger partnership. Having a stronger relationship can help reduce the likelihood that your marriage will end in divorce.
Talk to your partner about attending pre-marital counseling well in advance of your wedding date. Six to twelve months prior to your wedding can be a good time to start. It can also help you deal with this stressful period in a couple’s life.
No matter how long you have been dating or how long you have lived together, it is likely that pre-marital counseling help you prepare for marriage. It can give you education about marriage and what is needed for a couple to thrive. A strong marriage requires the couple to possess various skills that can be learned in pre-marital counseling.