When you are preparing for marriage, you spend a great deal of time concentrating on many items for that all-important day. You want the ceremony to be in just the right place and the reception to look a certain way. What about the tuxedos? What color will the bridesmaids' dresses be?
Shouldn't you spend as much time if not more on preparing for what occurs after the wedding day?
Whether you are about to be married or are married for just a short amount of time, there are a few priority things to be sure you discuss. First of all, be aware of your goals individually and as a couple as well as where you see yourselves in 5 or 10 years. Discuss what would happen if one of you lost your job during the marriage. Discuss who will care for children, should they come along. Discuss possibilities of a job transfer and if that is an option for the future. Consult with each other regarding the handling of the finances of the marriage. What about religion? Is that an issue that needs attention whether or not kids are in your future? Pre-Marital counseling can help a couple discuss these difficult issues and much more. Having peace of mind on that special day knowing that you have discussed the "hard" stuff, is priceless.
I meet with my couple initially to discuss how the process will work and set the guidelines for them to complete an online assessment. The couple will then take the on-line assessment that is tailored just for them. Once completed, we will begin our sessions covering one topic at a time to be sure we have discussed all the necessary issues before that big day arrives. The couple uses an interactive workbook that is provided to help them discuss issues like problem-solving skills and communication skills as well as finances, introverted tendencies vs extroverted tendencies, etc. Most couples complete the process in 6-10 sessions.
Upon completion of the sessions, the couple will be given a certificate of their accomplishment. If they were honest in the discussions that took place, they also receive some additional peace of mind regarding their future.
If you or someone you know is preparing for marriage, please be sure some pre-marital counseling occurs in some form to ensure the best possible chance of marital success. Couples should begin this process as soon as that initial commitment has been made, if possible.
Being prepared for life and what is has in store is crucial to future success. May you always be as prepared as you can be for what comes your way; you are worth the effort.