Have a wedding in your future? No matter if it’s big or small, traditional or destination, our relationship expert talks about the one expense that’s worth the price tag.
As we enter into wedding season, we become inundated with photos of happy brides, wedding cakes and table settings. The wedding becomes an entity of its own, with needs and responsibilities. The planning of a wedding can be stressful enough to need therapy!
As a relationship therapist, one of my favorite forms of couple’s counseling is Premarital Counseling. I get to see couples at their happiest and most hopeful. However, there are times when issues arise in premarital counseling that requires some hard work to resolve before the big day. This tends to be the biggest deterrent for most couples: “What if it brings up issues that aren’t problems for us?” Well, in reality, this can be true. But let me tell you something: it’s better to bring the issues to the surface pre-wedding than to see them emerge 10 years into your marriage, surrounded with kids, a mortgage and busy lives. In my opinion, premarital counseling is the best investment you can make when planning for your big day!
Here are the ins and outs of premarital counseling:
Top 3 Benefits of premarital counseling:
1. You have a relationship with a therapist if, down the road, you need one
One of the best things that can result from premarital counseling is a healthy and trusted relationship with a therapist. Marriage has its ups and downs. Having a trusted, unbiased professional who knows you as a couple is invaluable. They will be able to see where you are coming from, prior to whatever hardship you are encountering, and help you to get back on track.
2. You and your partner get on the same page
Sex, money, extended family, family planning, communication… these are all issues that every couple deals with at one time or another. Sorting out the logistics of all of these things prior to walking down the aisle, allows you and your partner to be on the same page from the beginning.
Building communication skills at the beginning of a marriage allows you to be good communicators for the long haul. The couples that I work with who come to me after 20 years of marriage are still having the same fights that they did 19 years ago. Nothing ever gets resolved. Knowing your communication styles and how to talk, and, yes, argue in a therapeutic and productive way will save you years of frustration.
Types of premarital counseling:
Many people who are getting married in their church or synagogue will have access to premarital counseling with their religious leader. Ask your church or synagogue if they provide this service for couples getting married there. Many religious centers offer premarital weekend workshops/ retreats. These can be a great way to pack a lot of work into a short weekend.
Money is tight, and time is limited! Not all couples have the ability to go to a therapist for multiple sessions. If you are self-disciplined and able to carve out time for you and your partner to read a book together and discuss any issues that arise, a book can be a great help. Here are a few that I recommend: Books and Resources.
3. Premarital counselor
As a relationship therapist, I work with couples about 6 months prior to their wedding date. We meet one time per month for an hour. Each couple has unique needs so the first session is used to identify any issues and treatment goals. We always discuss sex, money, family and communication styles. For more information on my premarital counseling style click here.
For more information on premarital counseling feel free to contact me at www.christyhaas.com.