Admit it, you are nervous. Your partner said yes, the wedding day is planned, and now you must keep the first of your promises to the future Mr. /Mrs. Smith… premarital counseling.
What will the counselor ask? Will I be embarrassed? Will my beloved be so disgusted by my skeletons that she will run from me? Fear not, friend. Premarital counseling is a tool and not an examination.
What exactly is pre marriage counseling?
Pre marriage counseling is designed to help couples move beyond the butterflies and warm fuzzies of romance so that they may engage in robust dialogue about the impending marriage and the stressors that may come into play once the honeymoon is over.
Pre-marriage counseling is usually well rooted in family systems theory, a therapeutic approach that explores how our family histories may impact our futures. Through the use of genograms that partners submit before or during counseling, couples understand different factors and roles that have played a significant role (in the life of their partners) and how it can impact the impending marriage.
Ok, but what counseling questions will I be asked?
Premarital questioning runs the gambit of topics depending on the couple’s background, the counselor’s interest, and the potential need to look at a couple of areas in intricate detail.
Examples of pre-marriage counseling questions include:
- What are the gender expectations you bring to marriage?
- Do you have skeletons in the closet that your partner is unaware of at this time?
- What is your vision for children? Does this vision mirror your partner’s vision?
- Have you talked about finances? Are your finances healthy?
- Will there be an equitable division of labor in the home?
- Will you share bank accounts or have your own?
- What will do if you disagree on major issues? Do you have the emotional tools to work through the impasse?
- Have you been intimate before the marriage?
- Do you have any health issues that your partner is not aware of at this time?
While this list is by no means exhaustive, it provides a good overview of the questions that will be addressed in counseling. At all times, be honest. Listen to your partner. Be open about deepening your relationship through transparency.