Get on track before you head down the isle.
If you are engaged and planning on getting married, you may have thought about premarital counseling. Premarital therapy isn’t for everyone -- some couples have a solid foundation and effective communication to create a strong bond. However, my view of premarital counseling is that it can be helpful in some way for most couples planning on saying “I do.” Just as you wouldn’t fly a plane without flying lessons, premarital counseling acts like a safety course, teaching you how to handle terbulance and all the working parts of your relationship. Premarital counseling sessions are about helping couples learn the rules of communication, explore marriage expectations, and discuss strategy plans for the unexpected future. Most premarital therapy is used as a preventative tool -- think of it as a way to get your relationship solid before walking into the married world.
Lisa Brookes Kift explains how premarital counseling helps your marriage start on the right foot
The amount of money spent on weddings is incredible, and why not? it's an unforgettable and, hopefully, life-lasting union between two people who love and are committed to each other. It's interesting then, how few people choose to invest in premarital education while planning their wedding budget. Relationships require work to remain vibrant and healthy. I suspect that the reason premarital counseling is overlooked by couples is that they are caught up in the honeymoon bliss of their romance that they don't stop to think of what obstacles may come appear down the line and how they will deal with them together. Life will throw you a curve ball at some point, premarital counseling will help you have as many tools in your marriage toolbox as possible to assist you in your relationship when this happens.
Prepare for your life together
Remember back when you were a teen preparing to get your driver's license? In order to get a driver license, several hoops must be jumped through: a permit test about the laws, driving classes, several months of practice with a skilled person in the car, and finally a licensing test. The DMV has made sure to educate the American driver to prevent accidents and fatal car collisions (thank goodness), but how come having children or getting married requires so little attention?
Love isn't the only thing a relationship needs to stay alive. It needs attention, emotional security, and effective communication. Without all of these factors, you may lose the closeness and trust with your partner that is essential to your success.
How therapy can be helpful for relationships
Many people step into therapy questioning whether or not it will be helpful. My rule of thumb is that you won't know until you have given it a fair shot!
I personally believe that therapy is an extremely effective tool for helping people get through various struggles. As a therapist, I am not stuck in the middle of the storm, feeling every emotion or reacting to all the issues addressed. Instead, I get the chance to see the whole picture, without bias or subjectivity, whether I am helping an individual or a couple.