The Case for Pre-marriage Counselling

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The Case for Pre-marriage Counselling

Counselling – isn’t it something people only need when they’ve lost their way in life, are having massive problems or issues in their relationship?

If you’re like most couples in the lead up to their Big Day, life is rosy. You’re in love and are dreaming of a beautiful future together, walking hand in hand into the sunset.

So why on earth would you take time away from your hectic wedding preparations, to go for counselling?!

When we stop to consider how much goes into planning a wedding, an event which lasts just one day – isn’t it far more important to invest both time and effort, into preparing for the marriage to follow?

What is Pre-Marriage Coaching?

Perhaps also, “counselling” is the wrong word as it implies that something in your life or relationship is not working. To avoid the stigma, it is probably much more appropriate to think of it as pre-marriage coaching.

Coaching aims to help you to achieve better results – whether you are working with a football coach, a business coach, or a pre-marriage coach. Together, you and your coach can work in areas such as motivation, goal setting, and communication.

Does Premarital Counselling Really Help?

Studies have revealed that couples who go for premarital counselling are much more likely to find satisfaction in their relationship, and build a marriage that endures than those who don’t.

In your pre-marriage coaching/counselling, you and your partner will be invited to discuss topics such as your:

  • expectations;
  • attitudes toward finances;
  • approaches to decision making;
  • communication styles;
  • religious beliefs and values;
  • and how each of you responds to stress.

It’s an opportunity for you and your partner to gain insight into the often unconscious values and expectations which each of your holds, as a result of your own unique upbringing and experiences.

Some couples are nervous of premarital counselling, worried that it will reveal cracks or difficulties in their relationship – but this is not a bad thing. Uncovering and talking out any problems before they become an issue, and being guided through the process by someone trained in facilitating communication, allows you and your partner to deal with molehills before they become mountains.

The research shows: investing the time and effort into premarital counselling gives your future marriage the very best chance of success.

Reference:
Bambling, M. (2007). Does it Work? Research on the Effectiveness of Couple Therapy. from Couple Therapy in Australia: Issues Emerging from Practice (pp23-48). Crawley, J & Shaw, E (Eds.) Victoria: PsychOz Publications
Trudy Jacobsen

Trudy Jacobsen is a Masters qualified counsellor and life coach. After nearly 20 years as a devoted runner, her hips were complaining so she has recently switched to yoga.

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