Why premarital counseling?
Counseling prior to marriage is accepting an opportunity to put strongholds in place for long-lasting respect, friendship, and happiness. Premarital counseling gives couples an opportunity to gain insights into growth-areas in their relationship, and identify strengths to build on. By understanding personality differences, couples can better prevent conflict and develop a better skill set to handling disagreements. Learning skills to manage conflict prior to the marriage can set the tone for healthy communication and understanding.
Added benefits include discussing expectations, setting realistic goals, and having a third party to help talk through on-going conflict. A counselor can pose concerns that haven’t naturally come up in conversation with your partner.
Is premarital counseling just for unhappy couples?
Many happy, content couples enter premarital counseling and find it helpful and fulfilling. Discussing one’s relationship and hearing their partner’s view can be constructive. Acknowledging previous challenges and talking through how they were resolved can be healing and promising to a beginning marriage.
PREPARE/ENRICH first provides each couple with an easy-to-use, confidential, online assessment. Assessments can be customized based on the background and needs of the couple, such as previous marriages, step children, older couples, or faith-based scales. After both partners complete their portion of the assessment, the therapist receives a copy of the report to be printed for use in counseling.
Topics covered in the assessment and program include a personality profile for each partner; relationship dynamics measured by assertiveness, self-confidence, avoidance, and partner dynamics; and 10 core scales of relationship health:
- Conflict Resolution
- Partner Style and Habits
- Financial Management
- Leisure Activities
- Sexuality and Affection
- Family and Friends
- Relationship Roles
- Children and Parenting
- Spiritual Beliefs
An optional workbook is provided to structure exercises to do between sessions including personal stress profiles, financial management planning, and family of origin maps, among others.
How long does the program take?
The online assessment should take each partner about 20 minutes to complete at home. The therapist and couple will determine the length of their individualized program based on their results. On average, couples meet for 6 -10 weeks to cover each topic and to close.
How much does it cost?
The PREPARE/ENRICH online assessment costs $35. Sessions with a therapist are billed according to their insurance or agreed upon session rate.
If you would like further information, please contact Christine Taylor, LPC, a certified PREPARE/ENRICH facilitator, at (847) 336-5621 x 123.