A lot of people go into marriage blind, immature, unhealthy, lonely, broken, hurting, holding onto past relationships, and oftentimes thinking marriage will fix their personal issues and heal their internal struggles. We live in a time where people believe that all their troubles will be over or will go away when or if they get married, and that’s not true. The truth is, marriage won’t make your problems go away and your issues will still be there. Marriage only magnifies or brings out of you, what you refuse to address prior to getting married.
For example: if you are lonely now, you will be lonely married, if you are immature now, you will be immature married, if you have a difficult time managing your finances now, you will have a difficult time when you get married, if you have anger problems now, you will have anger problems when you get married, if you and your fiance are fighting and have difficulties resolving conflicts and communicating now, you will the same problems when you get married.
Marriage is not the cure for the conflicts and issues that are occurring in your relationship, you can hope things will change after you get married, but the truth is, things will only get worse before they get better. However, there is one thing that can help you with all of this, premarital counseling. Yes, the one thing most people shy away from, don’t want to do, and for the most part see no need for it.
How would your life be different if you could discuss important issues prior to getting married, instead of discussing those issues while being married? Premarital counseling helps decrease frustration and anger about issues impacting the relationship, and when you know upfront what you are getting into and what your mate’s thoughts are about marriage, you will not be shocked when certain issues arise. Being informed, helps you to make some informed decisions, and this is what premarital counseling does, it helps you to be informed and make decisions with clarity and with your emotions.
Benefits of premarital counseling
Premarital counseling is worth the investment and important to the health and longevity of your relationship. It’s about taking steps towards addressing and dealing with issues that may be hard to discuss during the marriage, helps you create a plan of action for dealing with conflicts, provides you with the tools needed to build a healthy and solid foundation, helps you see situations from different perspectives, and teaches you how to respect each other’s differences.
It helps you deal with issues that have the potential affect your marriage
Anytime you’re trying to merge together to become one, your personal and relationship problems, thoughts, values, and beliefs automatically surface, the problems don’t magically disappear, and it becomes difficult to deal with the ups and downs of the relationship. That’s why it’s important to seek premarital counseling, to help you deal with issues that are impacting and have the potential to impact the marriage, and to identify what’s important to the both of you. It’s not enough to scratch surface and sweep everything under the rug and don’t deal with what’s really going on in the relationship and not express how you really feel. When you ignore issues in the relationship they get bigger, you take all of those issues into the marriage, and then you start to question why you got married or whether or not he/she is the one for you. My favorite statement is, “what you don’t deal with while dating, will be magnified and go to another level when you get married.
It helps deal with issues that has potential to impact marriage
It is an early intervention to help relationships
It’s important to not make getting married the goal, but the goal should be, to build a healthy, strong, lasting, and loving marriage. That’s why premarital counseling should be mandatory, and I consider it as early intervention, created to help you improve your relationship, learn effective ways to communicate, help you set realistic expectations, teaches you how to manage conflict effectively, gives you an opportunity to discuss and share your values and beliefs about important matters, such as finances, family, parenting, children, and your beliefs and values about marriage and what it takes to make a marriage last.
So, let’s look at 8 reasons why you should have premarital counseling:
If you or your mate have a history of childhood abuse, the marriage will be impacted.
If you or your mate have experienced domestic violence, the marriage will be impacted.
If you or your mate have different views on what infidelity is, the marriage will be impacted.
If you or your mate have unspoken expectations, the marriage will be impacted.
If you or your mate automatically assume you know what each other needs are, the marriage will be impacted.
If you or your mate have unresolved conflicts or resentment with your extended families or with each other, the marriage will be impacted.
If you or your mate struggle with expressing your frustrations and anger, the marriage will be impacted.
If you or your mate struggle with communicating and shutting down is your way of communicating, the marriage will be impacted.
Many people shy away from premarital counseling because of the fear of what may be revealed and because of the fear of the wedding being called off, but it’s better to work on issues beforehand, instead of waiting until you’re married to decide to deal with what you had a problem with prior to getting married. Working on the relationship early helps you grow together, so don’t make the mistake that many have already made, by not have premarital counseling before you get married. Consider premarital counseling and invest in your marriage before you get married.
Dr. LaWanda N. Evans specializes in helping couples build and maintain a healthy, loving, lasting, strong relationship. She teaches couples how to communicate to be heard and understood, how to manage conflicts and find solutions to the most difficult problems affecting their relationship, using the Gottman Method Couples Therapy approach. She provides relationship counseling, education, and development that focuses on improving communication, managing conflicts, affair recover, and premarital counseling and education. Dr. Evans is a Licensed Professional Counselor Supervisor, Healthy Relationship Expert, Relationship Therapist, Speaker and Author.