Congratulations! You and your partner have made the decision to commit to one another and become a new family. This relationship is undoubtedly the most valuable and potentially rewarding one you’ll ever have, so, of course, you want it to be healthy, satisfying, and full of love and laughter.
Perhaps your partnership is already rock solid, but no matter how strong the bonds of commitment, over the course of a lifetime every marriage has some trouble spots and goes through growing pains. By identifying areas of potential challenge and working to strengthen these issues now, you and your fiancé will have the best chance possible to build a strong, solid relationship that endures the test of time.
Many couples come from different backgrounds and have different ideas of what relationships and marriage should look like. Discussing differences and expectations beforehand better prepares you and your partner to understand and support one another throughout your marriage.
Premarital counseling can help you improve communication, set realistic expectations, and develop conflict-resolution skills. In premarital counseling.
You may examine issues such as:
- Beliefs and values
- Roles in marriage
- Affection and sex
- Desire to have children
- Family relationships
- Dealing with anger
- Time spent together
You may examine issues such as:
In our work together, we will use an evidence-based assessment tool called PREPARE/ENRICH. The PREPARE/ENRICH assessment identifies your relational strengths and areas for growth. Each of you will complete a comprehensive online inventory. We will review the results together and discuss any issues that may be on your mind leading up to your marriage. I will provide you with the skills you need to increase mutual understanding and improve your communication.
Explore relationship strength and growth areas
Strengthen couple communication skills, including forgiveness
Identify and manage major stressors
Learn conflict-resolution strategies using the specific ten step model
Explore family-of-origin issues using the Couple and Family Map
Discuss financial planning and budgeting
Develop personal, couple and family goals
Understand and appreciate personality differences
Premarital Counseling and the PREPARE/ENRICH assessment set the following goals for you as a couple:
- Explore relationship strength and growth areas
- Strengthen couple communication skills, including forgiveness
- Identify and manage major stressors
- Learn conflict-resolution strategies using the specific ten step model
- Explore family-of-origin issues using the Couple and Family Map
- Discuss financial planning and budgeting
- Develop personal, couple and family goals
- Understand and appreciate personality differences
No matter how strong your relationship is, premarital counseling can help you get to know and understand each other even better than you do now. You’ll get a perspective on your partnership that can enrich the depth of your connection. As you walk through life and marriage together, it’s not whether or not you have difficulties but how well you manage them that determines the success of your marriage. Taking the time to explore and develop your couple-ship now will give you the confidence to navigate whatever challenges you may face in the future.