Many couples do not know what to expect with Pre-marriage Counseling. The idea of counseling in general can be daunting – especially if you’ve never done it before. It can also seem intimidating to talk to a stranger about your relationship. In order to make your Premarital Counseling experience as comfortable as possible, I’ve outlined some things you can expect during your Pre-marriage Counseling sessions:
1. I Think You Are Proactive
When a couple signs up for Pre-marrige Counseling, I make one judgment – that they care about their relationship and they want to take active steps to preserve their love and build on their foundation. If you didn’t cherish your relationship, you would not invest in it.
2. I Want to Get to Know Your Relationship
Every relationship is unique. I want to get to know who you are as a couple. I’ll ask you to tell me the story of your relationship. What first brought you together? What experiences have brought you closer? What if anything has created distance? How do things look in your relationship when everything is great? How do things work when their are problems? In Pre-marriage Counseling we identify and celebrate your strengths along with building on your growth/problem areas.
3. We will Use the Prepare/Enrich Assessment along with EFT
As a Prepare/Enrich Facilitator, couples have the option (and often choose) to take the Prepare/Enrich Relationship Assessment before our first session. There is an extra fee of $35 from Prepare/Enrich to take the Assessment. Results including your relationship’s Strengths and Growth Areas are reviewed during the first session. The Assessment is a tangible report about your relationship. Prepare/Enrich also has workbook activities that correspond with the Assessment. These activities are given to you as homework to do at your leisure. Learn more here: Prepare/Enrich.
EFT (Emotionally Focused Therapy) is the method of therapy that I use with all my couples. It is a researched based method of doing counseling that focuses on strengthening the relationship bond. Learn more here: Emotionally Focused Therapy.
4. Focus is on Communication and Conflict Resolution
The goal of Pre-marriage Counseling is to prepare your relationship for marriage. It’s hard and even impossible to predict what life is going to throw at you as a couple. What we can do is make sure you have a process in place to communicate and resolve whatever comes your way in your marriage. In order to have effective communication and conflict resolution, both partners have to feel safe opening up, being honest and talking in a way that fosters resolve. Our sessions will focus on giving you the tools to communicate in a way that deepens your connection.
If you are looking to book a Pre-marriage Counseling appointment or have questions, feel free to contact me.
Learn more about me here: Jennifer Chappell Marsh, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist #53559.