Premarital Counseling: Must-Discuss Issues Before Going Into Marriage

How couples do well in a relationship depends on how well they discuss issues such as financial, children, personal, relationship, life goals, sex, and more.  Both couples should know what to expect of each other so as not to feel regretful in the future.

 

Marriage is the union of two differently unique and imperfect individuals with different personalities and different opposing views (most of the time).  Interviewing couples who were able to maintain a healthy successful relationship, all had one thing in common: they all have proper and healthy communication in that they can comfortably talk about anything under the sun. However, “Couples’ expectations about what marriage should be like are completely off from the reality of what marriage is actually like” says Dr. Chantal Gagnon PhD LMHC

 

 

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That is the reason why premarital counseling is necessary for couples who are about to tie the knot.  It is to prepare the couples how to be open with each other, teach them to communicate their thoughts and feelings, so important questions and issues will be discussed and settled in order for them to have a healthy marriage. “Through the counseling process, couples find ways to improve their level of relationship satisfaction, sometimes they can also identify obstacles or characteristics that are too much to bear for either person or for the relationship to overcome.” Dana Baduna, PhD, LMFT said.

 

Sharing each one’s goals and what they are thinking will allow them to be aware of their partner’s expectations of their future together.  It will prepare both of them on how to handle future situations as years go by.  During premarital counseling, there are issues that the counselor allows the couples to answer together.

 

Habits Are Hard To Break

A habit according to Merriam-Webster dictionary is the acquired manner of behavior that has become almost or entirely involuntary.

 

“Humans are complex and all of us experience emotions like anger and sadness, so it’s very normal that at some point in the relationship, you will disagree with your partner.” Maryann W. Mathai, LPCC, LMHC, LPC, NCC explains. Couples are entirely two different persons who decided to be together.  Their personal habits can significantly impact their relationship.  Simple issues such as the use of bathroom or organizing stuff can cause a significant conflict between couples who decide to live under one roof together.

 

Suddenly, you may feel that you are with a total stranger, seeing another side of your loved one that might surprise you and leave you annoyed in the long run.

 

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Finances Matters

It is essential to sort out money matters before marriage.  Financial issues can cause so much stress for couples and are said to be one of the leading causes of divorce.  But for some reason, there are couples who are about to get married who do not want to touch on these issues which are very crucial in making future decisions regarding

 

  • Setting financial priorities
  • How to split expenditures
  • Unexpected need to support someone
  • Planning a secure financial future especially when kids are involved

 

Your point of view about money can sometimes dictate the compatibility and success of a relationship.

 

Let’s Talk About Sex

Do you believe that better sex means better relationship? Does sexual compatibility matter to you when it comes to being in a relationship with someone?  If so, how are you going to know if you are sexually compatible if you are not going to discuss it before you say your vows?

 

Many couples decide to put an end to their long-term relationships once sex and intimacy in the bedroom has stopped.  Some women lose their appetite for sex when they reach the menopausal age, and this is often an unacceptable reason for men.   Some end up in divorce, and according to them, they fell out of love; others say the chemistry just seemed to fade away.

 

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Children And Family

When it comes to having children, it is crucial for couples to be on the same page, as not everyone wants to have kids.  Early on, it is necessary to discuss how long before you should have kids, how many if ever, who will take care of the baby (is a crucial topic that needs to be made clear).   Other issues that you must talk about also include consideration of adopting kids and the use of contraceptives.

 

Couples must share their experiences growing up, how each was brought up, how their parents and their siblings are, and what rules and techniques their parents used and if they will apply them in raising their own kids?

 

Religion And Spiritual Beliefs

For new couples, this may seem not big of an issue.  But when there are kids involved, it may, especially when it comes to disciplining and teaching them how to be good people.  Beforehand, questions on how each perceives God and how important religion is should be discussed with an open mind.

 

Setting Relationship Goals

Different couples have different relationship goals.  It may depend on how they see their future together, what they think will make them happy and contented with their relationship.

 

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Everybody aims for a relationship where he is accepted without judgment, loved, cared and understood.   Some want a secure married life where they can make every moment memorable.  Knowing each other’s interest and openly telling what each of them likes and dislikes could help couples be accepting of each other’s flaws.

 

But no matter what relationship goals you each have and you both set as a couple, one thing is for sure – everybody does so for the ultimate happiness they have been searching for.

 

Communication And Disagreements

Communication is vital in every relationship.  There are many decisions couples have to make together no matter how simple or complicated they may be.  How will you solve issues or conflict effectively if you will not talk about them?

 

Married life is a real thing, not a fantasy, not your happy ever after story, and it may or may not be your path to forever.

 

Attending premarital counseling where you and your partner will be given a chance to discuss all these things is essential.   The success of your counseling can dictate the success of your life as a couple.  Being able to answer your counselor’s questions and share your thoughts with your partner is a liberating experience for you both as a couple.

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