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How Counselling and Workshops Before Marriage Build a Solid Foundation for Your Relationship

March 14, 2019

Are you ready for the big commitment? There are many significant decisions to be made and conversations to be had before the “I do”.  How will we celebrate holidays? What are our beliefs about sex? Will we have a shared bank account? How do we handle our debt? Will we have children?

Premarital counselling and marriage preparation workshops can give your relationship an excellent foundation. They will increase the likelihood of success because you will identify your values, beliefs, needs, fears, and desires and learn how to communicate them to your partner.

Benefits of premarital counselling and marriage preparation workshops include:

  • Receive outside professional guidance: Sometimes, when two people are in love, with a “love conquers all” attitude, there may be things that are overlooked. Receiving outside professional guidance can provide an unbiased view of your relationship.
  • Understand family dynamics: Marital success requires that a couple can shift primary allegiance from parents to their partner. You should be aware of the potential influences of the first family experience, good and bad, on this new relationship. For example, a partner with an overbearing parent may overreact to their partner’s reasonable request for help.
  • Fine-tune communication skills: Communication involves much more than an exchange of information. It’s using our words to share ‘words of life’ to build a healthy, strong relationship. Can you recall a time when you were not listened or heard? How did that feel? You can learn and understand empathy, the ability to sense how your partner is feeling, and allow them to express that feeling openly. A professional can identify the “hot topics” you and your partner are most sensitive about and teach skills to avoid and overcome the personal triggers.
  • Discuss roles in your household:  Before you get married, it’s important to discuss expectations with understanding and respect, as it will help you avoid resentment and hurt.  You should consider who will cook, clean, shop, vacuum, handle money, cut grass, prepare lunches, laundry, etc. Understanding early who will do what and what expectations we have will save you from headaches later.
  • Address family planning and sexuality: This area involves a lot of decisions from the number of children and the timing for children to the frequency of sex.
  • Plan your finances:  Research shows that financial and money issues cause struggles in marriages. Counselling and pre-marriage workshops can explore the meaning of money for each partner and teach you financial skills.
  • Plan the special day: Pre-marriage counselling and workshops help to make aware of the life-long, person to person interactions and seeing and meeting the needs of each other, over the specialness of one day.  Seeing conflict through your partner’s eyes, being able and willing to love unconditionally, being adaptable, and staying in the moment will set patterns for a life-long commitment and healthy family dynamic.

Asking for help and counsel in your relationship takes a strong person.  Access counselling, couples’ seminars, and retreats to keep the fire burning throughout your relationship.

 

Daniel Dannhauer

Mental Health Therapist