Congratulations on taking your relationship to the next level!
Sharing your life with a partner and making a commitment is an exciting and challenging adventure. It will invariably introduce you to new interactions and new challenges. It is a great idea to look in advance at the issues you will be facing to be prepared when the time comes and to give yourself the best chance of making your marriage a success.
Maybe you have been married before or living together already. Whatever your circumstances, it is common to discover that you are attracted to someone who has some values and behaviors that are different from your own. Although it can be refreshing to be around someone with a different perspective and who has different ways of doing things, sometimes that difference can be annoying and frustrating! You will see how dealing with differences can strengthen relationships. This is because it provides the opportunity to understand your partner’s perspective and to take a good look at your own positions and coping skills.
Premarital Counseling covers the essentials of a healthy relationship. It will give you the opportunity to improve coping skills, trust, and communication. You can discover and identify what you want in the marriage and what you are willing to give. It will identify areas where you are truly compatible and those that may be less so. It will give you the opportunity to address and resolve differences and issues between you prior to them becoming problems.
Together we will identify what makes marriages succeed or fail, how to deal with criticism, defensiveness, withdrawal, and jealousy, how to communicate effectively with respect and empathy, how to avoid power struggles, how to keep the romance and spark alive, and how to have long-term success in a loving relationship.
Utilizing a PreMarital Questionnaire, we explore practical issues and important situations to prepare you for situations that often come up in marriage. The questionnaire covers issues on the following topics: Money, Work, Marriage, Communication Rules, Relatives, Anger, Ex’s Sex, Children, Alcohol, Feelings About Yourself, Family of Origin Issues, Blended Families, Vacations, and Physical Appearance.
To get an idea of how the questionnaire works, an example is shown below with the topic of Finances/ Money. Again, each topic has several questions related to the topic for each person to answer. See how you do with the following topic and questions.
Topic 1 – Finances/ Money
- Do you believe it is important to disclose your entire financial worth to each other before you get married?
- Would you expect your partner to disclose to you any personal debt that they have prior to your getting married?
- Are you willing to disclose any personal debt you have with your partner prior to getting married?
- Have you both already disclosed your current debt situation to one another?
- Does your partner pay their bills on time?
- How much money will you have? From which resources?
- Will all the money become “our money”?
- If one person makes significantly more than the other, how will that affect you emotionally as a couple?
- What are each person’s personal monthly expenses?
List: car payment, insurance, tithing, grooming clothing, etc…
- How will these expenses by paid for?
- Do you believe in living within a budget?
- Does your partner believe in living within a budget?
- Who will pay for joint expenses such as mortgages, utilities, meals?
Who pays for which bills?
- Savings, joint or individual account after marriage?
- Will there be a prenup? Why or why not?
- Will there be a postnup? Why or why not?
- Is there money that is NOT to be shared? i.e. inheritance, trusts, stocks…
- Will your joint income fund include financial responsibilities to other people such as ex’s or elderly parents?
- Do you or your partner plan for the future or live for today only?
- Would you start a college fund or trust once your baby is born, or wait, or not at all?
- Do you have life insurance? Who are the beneficiaries?
- Does your partner have life insurance? Who are the beneficiaries?
- Would you be resentful if your partner had someone other than you as a beneficiary?
- Do you have the same financial goals?
Then we go forward with the other topics and related questions to those premarital counseling topics.
In addition to the above, we will cover what makes marriages succeed or fail, how to deal with criticism, defensiveness, withdrawal, and jealousy, how to communicate effectively with respect and empathy, how to avoid power struggles, how to keep the romance and spark alive.
We take care of the things we cherish. Premarital counseling is a way you can take care of you, your partner, and your new life. I look forward to supporting you to have a loving, exciting, and fulfilling marriage with lasting success and happiness.