10 Benefits of Premarital Counseling

It is likely that you found this post because you are recently engaged or considering marriage with your current partner. First of all, congratulations! As with any major life transition, this decision may come with some amount of stress and anxiety, even if you feel totally secure in your relationship. One of the ways to make sure that your relationship has the best chance for success is to consider pursuing premarital counseling. 

As a whole, the benefits of completing premarital counseling far outweigh any drawbacks. The goal of this article is to provide you with 10 Benefits of Premarital Counseling, as well as to address some common concerns.

Why Premarital Counseling?

1. Couples can learn how to communicate clear expectations about the relationship.

As the old adage goes, “unexpressed expectations are premeditated resentments.” 

One of the most useful skills couples learn in therapy is how to clearly and kindly communicate their individual expectations so that their partner can understand where they are coming from. From there, the couple can collaborate on a plan knowing where each of them stand on an issue, rather than waiting for problems to arise because expectations were not communicated. 

2. Couples can discuss topics to gain a mutual understanding of what they may face in the future.

Our Atlanta premarital counselors make space for premarital couples to discuss issues they will face in the future, like parenting, life transitions, or future conflicts. When the time comes to make a decision about that topic, the couple feels more competent to tackle it together because they’ve had practice discussing the issue and generally know where their partner stands. 

3. It sets aside intentional time to reflect on your relationship and address topics that may be getting pushed under the rug.

It is common for couples to get to the end of an argument and still be unsure as to what the resolution is and how to make changes to avoid that confrontation again. After a while these unresolved issues tend to pile up, and the thought of rehashing an old argument seems pointless and exhausting. This is where a therapist can come alongside you to help unpack these issues and allow you to feel more confident going forward. 

4. It creates a routine of sitting down and addressing issues as they arise.

One of the best interventions our counselors share with couples is the suggestion to regularly meet together as a couple to discuss how things are going in your relationship. Meeting periodically can help you stay on top of problems as they arise before they become a larger issue. These regular meetings are also a great opportunity to express ways you feel loved by your partner- encouragement is one of the best positive reinforcers in relationships! 

Working with an Atlanta couples therapist provides the additional benefits:

 

5. Building communication and conflict resolution skills can provide immediate relief.

One of the benefits of working with a therapist is that in addition to administering the traditional premarital counseling material, they can pull from other theories and modalities in order to enhance and enrich the process. 

6. Becoming familiar with the process of therapy allows it to become a life-long tool.

Sometimes the biggest barrier for couples getting the counseling support they need is overcoming fears or stigmas often associated with the process. Starting your marriage with counseling is a great way to get oriented with the process so that if more help is needed in the future, you already have a foundation to build upon instead of starting from scratch. 

7. Identifying strength areas in your relationship builds motivation to keep doing what’s already working!

Therapy shouldn’t feel like you are being called to the principal’s office. Our Atlanta premarital counselors approach therapy with a strengths-based mindset, meaning that we are looking for ways your relationship is already working well, and encourage you to keep doing those things! 

8. Additional support and encouragement from a trained mental health professional helps when having difficult conversations. 

Discussing topics such as communication, conflict resolution, and extended family can often bring up some unresolved hurts or past injuries in relationships. It can be helpful to have an unbiased third party to guide you through these tricky conversations to allow you both to feel heard and understood by each other on these sensitive issues.  

9. Helping you navigate conversations during the wedding planning process makes big transitions easier.

Sometimes couples do not face serious challenges in their relationship until they are engaged or considering moving in together. This may be the first time topics like money, family relationships, unspoken expectations, and spirituality are discussed in a relationship. Working with a therapist during this time will allow you and your partner additional guidance and support to navigate these often challenging conversations. 

10. Completing assessments about yourself, your partner, your relationship, and your families of origin helps you gain valuable insights.

Our Atlanta premarital counselors often hear feedback from couples about how helpful it is to see their assessment results on various measures provided by the Prepare/ Enrich evaluation. Viewing your results from these assessments together can help you cement your own knowledge of yourselves and your relationship.

There is no “right” or “wrong” couple for premarital counseling. The process can be beneficial for couples who are considering engagement, already engaged, or recently married. Couples may come in already feeling positively about their relationship, or some come in feeling hesitant for one reason or another. 

The goal of premarital counseling is to provide couples with skills and helpful frameworks for addressing common relationship issues that they may already be facing or that they will face in the future. 

Many couples find that having conversations about issues before they emerge allows them to feel more confident handling these challenges when they come up. 

If you have any questions or concerns about the premarital counseling process, please reach out to one of our qualified Atlanta area premarital counselors for a free 15 minute consultation call.

Feel ready to book a session? Click here to schedule a session today at our Sandy Springs counseling office. We have a passion for couples in this phase of their relationship and would be thrilled to come alongside you in this season!

About Rachel Postic, APC

Rachel provides individual, couples and family therapy, including counseling for dating, engaged and married couples. She also conducts premarital workshops and groups.