Don’t most of us just love the idea of meeting someone special, falling in love and eventually settling down together? Most of us hope to formalize our union through marriage and living happily ever after, just like in movies and fairy tales. Once you settle in together to start your marriage, reality can, however, sink in really fast and this reality is usually way different from our expectations. The mere fact that you are bringing in two grown adults, with two distinct personalities and different ways of thinking to live together, is always a cause of friction from the get-go. Premarital counseling comes in handy in psychologically preparing someone for what to expect, and if not for anything else, that is the one reason why you should go for it. Why then should you consider it?
- Premarital Therapy Helps you Face Issues
Premarital counseling helps you face issues that may be overlooked simply because you are in love. It helps you figure out your partner’s stand on pertinent issues such as finances, resolving arguments, the number of children you intend to get (if any)and even how to deal with the in-laws. Without a plan, the chances are that once you get in the marriage setting, you’ll realize that the person you married is not who you “thought” they were. A difference in perspective causes a lot of friction in most unions and could lead to separation and divorce in the long run. Learning how to react when this happens saves a lot of pain and hurt that could be easily avoided by ironing out some of these issues beforehand.
- Effective Communication
We’ve all been in situations where we are trying to communicate to the other party yet doesn’t seem to “get it.” Take time to imagine how frustrating this can be with your spouse. Someone you see every day and have to talk to every single day? Yes, it can be utterly frustrating.
Premarital therapy equips you with effective communication skills that help you and your spouse get along better and avoid unnecessary misunderstandings and arguments that could be easily prevented. Counseling will help you be an active listener and help you respond better to what your partner wants and needs. With such skills, your marriage stands a chance of standing against the test of time through expressing love and not taking each other for granted.
- Divorce Prevention
We all know that the divorce rate is at an all-time high right now. The reality is that many couples getting married today have the odds stacked against them. If you’re not careful, chances are you won’t stay together long enough to thoroughly enjoy your happily ever after.
Premarital therapy helps you avoid divorce by up to 30%. Through counseling, you can face your fears and identify your values, beliefs, needs and desires, all of which contribute to your thought pattern. After all, we are our thoughts. Being able to communicate all this effectively will help you avoid divorce. Many people do not realize it, but the primary cause of divorce is a breakdown in communication. By learning how to articulate your issues and concerns, you will prevent them from escalating and finally culminating in divorce.
- Handling Finances
Once you’re married, money issues always crop up and if you’re not careful, could be the reason why you and your partner do not see eye-to-eye. Through premarital therapy, you can avoid getting into debt in the first place by settling for a wedding that you can both afford. Additionally, you can discover more on the credit report of your partner which will let you know exactly what you are, financially speaking, getting into. Sitting down with a counselor helps you create a plan for handling your finances. It opens up your eyes to habits that will have to change and others you will have to adopt if you are to survive financially in this union. It helps you figure out who is to handle what, clearly demarcating who will play which role with regards to money. Trust me; a counselor will save you from a massive headache on how to handle money matters.
It is wiser to get premarital therapy from a counselor who has been in marriage. They come in with a ton of real life experience and a wealth of knowledge on how to effectively tackle issues as they arise. They are a mentor of sorts. They will give you a different perspective given that they are on the outside of your union and can help you navigate through pertinent issues from a neutral angle. This person will help you see things that you did not even know existed, leaving you better equipped with tools and skills to handle them. There is something about having been married that helps you understand couples hoping to marry better, giving their union a fighting chance. Those hoping to get married should take full advantage of this mentoring just as you would in your career.
- Handling Expectations
Heading into marriage, everyone has expectations. Expectations and reality are fortunately/unfortunately, two very different things. As human beings, we tend to have very high expectations in marriage, not realizing that marriage and dating are two very different realities. Once you get married, and you wake up to this person every single day, you start seeing all their flaws up-close and personal. You also realize that all of a sudden, they don’t measure up to what you were expecting. A counselor will help you navigate through this wisely, if and when it happens.
- Intimacy for the Long Run
Once you’ve been married for a while, everything becomes very routine. This can be incredibly boring. Once the initial spark “fades,” many ask themselves if this is what they really signed up for. Sex is no longer as magical as it once was and can become pretty much plain and routine. What most couples, especially young couples, do not understand is that sex does not fully encompass intimacy in a marriage. It is one form of intimacy, but not the only one. Premarital therapy will help you have that hard and open conversation on how to handle sex issues. It will help you discover other forms of intimacy and help you prepare for the long haul, more so once you get children.
Marriage is not a bad thing. It is, however, not always a rosy affair. Getting prepared beforehand will definitely ease the pressure of settling into marriage and fully enjoying it.