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Should You Get Pre-Marital Counseling Before Marriage?

Premarital counseling is a form of counseling that can benefit any couple that is planning to become wed to one another. Premarital counseling is also called premarital preparation.

It is important to remember that the word “counseling” can sometimes be misleading. Premarital counseling is not a form of therapy. Premarital counseling is educational and will help couples learn the skills they will need to support them in having a happy, healthy and lasting marriage.

Premarital counseling will help a couple to identify and communicate about their fears, desires, beliefs, values, dreams, needs, and other issues and baggage that was previously avoided or denied, never discussed before.

Half of all marriages fail. Research has shown that premarital counseling helps to decrease the incidence of divorce by as much as 30 percent.

The belief behind premarital counseling is that it is necessary to encourage the strength of a marriage before it takes place and to prepare and anticipate challenges and conflicts that could arise in the marriage in the future.

Research into the benefits of pre-marital counseling has found that there is a window of opportunity that exists during the year that precedes the wedding as well as the first six months after the wedding when the most benefits from pre-marital education can be gleaned. As time passes and more stress comes into the relationship, a couple can find that negative habits and unhealthy relationship patterns can develop that can become well established and very hard to break.

Research has illuminated seven areas of knowledge and relationship skills that help contribute to the development, success and lasting quality of a happy, loving marriage. Pre-marital counseling sessions should address each and every one of these areas in order to be of the greatest help to couples. These seven areas include compatibility, expectations, personalities as well as families of origin, communication, conflict resolution, intimacy and sexuality and lastly, long-term goals.

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